Maoists continue to damage school buildings in Jharkhand

     Suspected Maoists have damaged scores of school buildings in Jharkhand, badly affecting spread of education in the backward areas of the state. The rebels, who have been termed as one of the gravest threats to India's security by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, have damaged or demolished around 77 concrete school buildings in Narayanpur district of the State. Maoists frequently made demand on the education department authorities to put with a percentage of resources given to them to improve the infrastructure of the schools. "Under Narayanpur district around 77 concrete buildings were either damaged or demolished. We are continuing schools in alternative buildings made of tin-shades," said H R Gourela, Deputy Commissioner, Scheduled Tribe Welfare and Development Department of Narayanpur district. Authorities have made alternative arrangements but they fail to enthuse children, teachers said. "Children are excited about education but in the absence of proper infrastructure, their presence is quite low," said B S Komra, a schoolteacher in Bharanda village. However, they were not sure who exactly were behind the attacks. "This is yet unknown who was behind the attack. Villagers said that a group of unknown people came and damaged it. No villager was there at that point of time," added Komra. Reportedly, there are around eight Maoist groups operating in Jharkhand, which clash quite often with each other over command of the areas to extort levy from the locals. Maoists have ignored repeated calls to renounce violence and negotiate across the table. they have stepped up their attacks during the past few past months, prompting the government to go after them in a concerted strike.

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