Maoists bomb houses of poll candidates

Dhangadhi, February 1:

Houses of Bishnudevi Rawal and Kumarbahadur Shah, mayoral and deputy mayoral candidates of the Tikapur municipality, were destroyed in blasts carried out by the Maoists today.

The Maoists detonated five bombs simultaneously in the area where the District Police Office, the District Prison and the branch office of the Nepal Rastra Bank are located, this evening, a Dhangadhi-based security source said.

A large number of security personnel has been mobilised in the Dhangadhi bazaar following the blasts, the source said.

At least 200 rounds of gunshots were heard in the area from 8:10 pm to 8:35 pm, locals said. The Maoists began firing from the east and the police retaliated later, the District Police Office said.

Meanwhile, the Maoists rained bullets on the Sukhkhad-based unified security base camp at 8:45 pm.

There were no damages as the attack was launched from afar, the security source said.

The Maoists also detonated a bomb in the house of the recently-elected mayor of the Taulihawa Municipality, Ramdas Gupta, at 9 pm. The explosion has devastated the house,

the source said. Windowpanes of the New Road (Pokhara)-based office of the Pokhara Sub-Metropolitan City were destroyed in a blast carried out by the Maoists, a report said.

The Maoists detonated bombs near the residence of the superintendent of police at 6:45 pm today, a report from Tanahun said, adding that there were no casualties. The rooftop of morgue of the Damauli hospital was damaged in the blasts, the Tanahun District Police Office said.

Panicked people ran helter-skelter for security following the blasts. Security men conducted checks on vehicles on the Prithvi highway after the bombing.