11 held after Maoists’ Bihar massacre

PATNA: Indian police said today they had arrested 11 suspected Maoists accused of gunning down 16 villagers in a massacre in the east of the country linked to a land dispute.

The 11 were arrested on suspicion of murder, said police in Bihar state, adding they were looking for another 39 suspects.

“Eleven people, including the mastermind of the incident, were arrested, and the interrogation is on,” police inspector-general AR Kinni told AFP from Khagaria district, where the incident occurred.

The perpetrators are suspected Maoists who supported low-caste villagers in a long-standing dispute with landowners, police said.

“We strongly feel the Maoists were behind the incident,” district magistrate Abhay Singh said. On Thursday over 50 armed rebels raided Amausi village, 200 kilometres north of Patna, shooting the 16 landowners and their families, including five children, police said.