Rejecting the demands for withdrawal of security forces and release of prisoners by Maoist-backed tribal agitators, West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadev Bhattacharjee on Tuesday night said the police have been asked to move to the detained Rajdhani Express to rescue the passengers.
"We can't just accept such demands like withdrawal of security forces and release of some prisoners," the chief minister told a press conference in Kolkata, on the detention of the Bhubaneswar-Delhi Rajdhani Express by the People's Committee against Police Atrocities, at Banstala in West Midnapore district.
He said the police were attacked by the agitators and one driver received gunshot injuries. "The police are moving towards the detained Rajdhani Express cautiously. Our purpose is to free the area and remove agitators from the train," he said.
"Our aim is to free the area of agitators, rescue the passengers and the drivers and ensure resumption of the train's journey," the chief minister said.
He said a few hundred passengers were detained in the train and the drivers were sitting in a nearby area surrounded by the agitators.
To a question, he said it would not be correct to compare the release of Sankrail officer in-charge Atindranath Dutta in exchange for arrested tribal women, to today's incident.
"Don't try to compare the two incidents. Don't mix the two up," he said.
"Police have come to a visible distance and senior officers, including the chief secretary, home secretary, the director general of police and others are monitoring the situation from the Midnapore Circuit House," he said.
Bhattacharjee said railway officers were also trying to reach the spot.
"No way has been found as yet. Along with PCPA agitators, Maoists too are in the field," he said.
Bhattacharjee said his Orissa counterpart Naveen Patnaik had contacted him and he had held two rounds of talks with Union Home Minister P Chidambaram.