Sunday, November 05, 2006

Naxals test-fired rockets at Burugundala

Naxals test-fired rockets at Burugundala

Special Correspondent

Leaders felt they could be used for causing nuisance to police

# Rockets manufactured under Kumaraswamy's supervision
# Instructed to manufacture 1,600 rockets, 40 launchers

CHENNAI: Rockets manufactured in engineering units here for a naxalite group in Andhra Pradesh were test-fired at Burugundala in the Nallamala forest to evaluate their efficiency.

When the tests were conducted, a central committee member and a State committee member of the banned outfit were present. They felt that though the rockets were ineffective, they could still be used for causing nuisance to the police.

The manufacturing here was allegedly done under the supervision of Thota Kumaraswamy alias Tech Madhu alias Srinivasa Reddy, who is associated with the group. The central committee member instructed him to manufacture 1,600 rockets and 40 launchers. According to a note sent by Andhra Pradesh police to the Centre, the group sent Mr. Kumaraswamy to Chennai in 2003 for rocket/rocket launchers projects.

These included development of shoulder-mounted rocket launchers and rockets. Mr. Kumaraswamy, along with his wife Siva Kavi Sudharani alias Vasantha, also belonging to the naxalite group, escaped on September 9 from their house at Ambattur on Chennai's outskirts.

This was after rocket shells and launchers he sent to Vijayawada and Vedayapalem were seized by the Mahboob Nagar and Prakasam district police.

The couple escaped from Chennai on a motorcycle to Tiruvallur, parked the vehicle at the railway station and boarded a train.

Police hunt

The Tamil Nadu `Q' branch police launched a hunt for the couple who later surrendered before the Andhra Pradesh police. The police also seized photographs, diary, documents and other articles during their search at the couple's house.

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