Special DG (Anti-Naxal Ops) DM Awasthi addressing a press conference in Raipur on Tuesday.
Special DG (Anti-Naxal Ops) DM Awasthi addressing a press conference in Raipur on Tuesday.

Dantewada Naxal attack: BJP MLA advised not to take route, says police

ANI | Updated: Apr 09, 2019 22:21 IST

Raipur (Chhattisgarh) [India], Apr 9 (ANI): BJP MLA Bheema Mandavi was among the five people killed on Tuesday evening when Naxal's attacked his convoy in Dantewada region of Chattisgarh, two days before the region goes to vote in the first phase of the country's Lok Sabha elections.  
Police said it had advised the legislator against visiting the area without adequate security but his convoy took the route from Kuakonta to Syamgiri to visit the area and was attacked with an improvised explosive device some four kilometres away from Kuakonta.
Special DG (Anti-Naxal Ops) DM Awasthi said, "Mandavi was out for an election campaign with DRG 50 jawans on 25 motorcycles. He returned around 1 pm to the party's office in Dantewada and told the DRG chief that there is no need of security since his campaign was over for the day."
"Later, he went to Kirantur party office with three security vehicles. After meeting with workers, he was going to Bacheli. Police Station in-charge of Bacheli Aditya Singh got the information that Mandavi will pass Kuakonda," he said.
According to special DG Awasthi, the BJP legislator was informed that there is no adequate security on the route he is planning to go but he did not accept and went there.
Naxals attacked the convoy in which Mandavi was travelling, and killed all five including his driver and three Personal Security Officers (PSO).
A high-level meeting has been called by Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel following the attack. A reinforcement of CRPF has been rushed to the spot. 
The Election Commission has sought an urgent report on the attack from the Chhattisgarh government and the state Election Officer.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi took to Twitter and condemned the attack saying that their sacrifices will not go in vain.
"Shri Bhima Mandavi was a dedicated Karyakarta of the BJP. Diligent and courageous, he assiduously served the people of Chhattisgarh. His demise is deeply anguishing. Condolences to his family and supporters. Om Shanti," the Prime Minister tweeted.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh also condemned the attack and tweeted: "Anguished by the death of BJP MLA Shri Bhima Mandavi and four Chhattisgarh police personnel in an IED attack in Dantewada today. I extend my deepest condolences to their bereaved families."
"I spoke to Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Shri @bhupeshbaghel regarding the IED attack in Dantewada and expressed my grief over the martyrdom of state police personnel. He has also apprised me of the ground situation in Dantewada," he said in another tweet.
Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel said in a message on twitter: "Our MLA's fellow Bhima Mandavi and four others have been victims of the Naxalite attack. This is another big and highly condemnable attack on parliamentary democracy after the Jeerum attack. I am extremely distracted, I am shocked. I do not have words to express sorrow. Humble tribute to the martyrs"
"We once again reiterate our commitment to our fight to strengthen parliamentary democracy. I am reviewing the incident with top officials. I have given the instructions for the officers that bullets of Naxalite should be answered in their language," he said in another tweet
Congress president Rahul Gandhi tweeted: "The Naxalite attack of Dantewada Chhattisgarh is very sad. I pray to God to give peace and strength to the soul of the departed soul and the family."
Former Chief Minister Raman Singh said, "I'm in contact with central ministers; spoke to PM an hour ago. I will go to Dantewada and meet families of deceased...Congress ki boli aur goli ka asar dikhne laga hai."
Chhattisgarh will witness Lok Sabha polls in the first three phases- April 11, April 18 and April 23 for its 11 Parliamentary constituencies. (ANI)