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Naxalite Leader Dinesh Gope Arrested after 20 Years

NIA had declared a reward of Rs 5 lakhs, besides the reward of Rs. 25 lakhs announced by the Jharkhand Government for leads on Dinesh

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Raju Vernekar
Raju Vernekar
Raju Vermekar is a senior Mumbai-based journalist who have worked with many daily newspapers. Raju contributes on versatile topics.

INDIA. Mumbai: The hardcore Naxalite Dinesh Gope, involved in over 100 criminal cases, and giving a slip to police for the last two decades, was nabbed by National Investigation Agency (NIA) from New Delhi on Sunday.

Dinesh was taken to Ranchi in Jharkhand by air amid tight security arrangements at around 5 p.m. on Sunday. He was remanded to eight days of custody by a special NIA court in Ranchi on Monday.

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“A self-styled Supremo of the People’s Liberation Front of India (PLFI), a proscribed Naxal outfit of Jharkhand, Dinesh Gope, Kuldeep Yadav, Badku of district Khunti in Jharkhand was arrested in connection with a terror funding case. NIA had declared a reward of Rs 5 lakhs for leads on Dinesh, in addition to the reward of Rs. 25 lakhs announced by the Jharkhand Government,” the NIA statement read. 

He was earlier charge-sheeted by the NIA in the case (RC-02/2018/NIA/DLI) related to the recovery of demonetized currency of Rs. 25.38 lakhs from the operatives of PLFI. In this case, one of the two cases against the PLFI that the NIA Ranchi Branch is looking into, he was missing. He was depositing the demonetized currency in a bank account at a petrol pump, to be later collected through levy/extortion. The illegal money was then invested through banking channels and dubious Shell companies in the names of close associates and family members.

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According to NIA investigations, over 102 criminal cases have been registered against the accused in Jharkhand, Bihar, and Odisha. Most of these cases relate to murders, abductions, threats, extortion, and raising funds for the PLFI, a militant Maoist outfit formed in 2007 in Jharkhand and also a splinter group of the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist).

As per the NIA investigation, the PLFI, earlier known as the Jharkhand Liberation Tigers (JLT), was responsible for hundreds of terror incidents in Jharkhand. The outfit used to lure unemployed youth by providing them with motorbikes, mobile phones, and easy money, and after imparting training, it used to equip them with lethal weapons to carry out terror incidents.

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An encounter had taken place between a Dinesh-led PLFI squad and security personnel in the forest area under the Gudri Police Station of West Singhbhum district of Jharkhand on February 3, 2022. Several rounds were fired in the encounter before the rebels sneaked into the forest and Dinesh managed to escape.

Gope had been absconding since then and had been taking shelter at different places while making all efforts to re-establish the PLFI’s stronghold in Jharkhand. He used to extort money and execute attacks through his PLFI team members to terrorize businessmen, contractors, and the public at large, NIA investigations have shown.

The case was initially registered as No. 67/2016 on November 10, 2016, at PS Bero, Ranchi, and re-registered by the NIA on January 19, 2018. The police had filed the first chargesheet against four people on January 9, 2017. Subsequently, the first supplementary chargesheet was filed against 11 accused, including Dinesh. The second Supplementary chargesheet was filed on July 23, 2022, against five individuals and three private limited companies. The NIA had also attached 14 bank accounts and two cars, along with cash and immovable property worth more than a crore, to the case.

Extortion was PLFI’s major source of income, and it has been targeting coal traders, railway contractors, and various private entities involved in developmental projects in various districts of Jharkhand. Dinesh had invested these funds in dubious shell companies, including M/S Palak Enterprises, M/s Shiv Adi Shakti, M/s Shiv Shakti Samridhi Infra Pvt. Ltd., and M/s Bhavya Engicon, formed in partnership with other PLFI associates and his family members. 

The extorted money was also transferred from Jharkhand to other places through a network of hawala operators. In July 2007, Masi Charan Purty, a renegade of the CPI-Maoist, along with several of his followers, joined Dinesh to raise PLFI as a Naxal outfit. Though Masi Charan Purty was arrested, the PLFI spread its activities under Gope’s command. “He used to collect huge amounts of extortion money, which was used to procure sophisticated weapons, including AK 47s and foreign-made Rifles, such as HK 33,” the NIA statement added.

Also Read: 10 DRG Jawans and a Driver Killed in Naxal Attack in Dantewada in Chhattisgarh


  • Raju Vernekar

    Raju Vermekar is a senior Mumbai-based journalist who have worked with many daily newspapers. Raju contributes on versatile topics.

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