Former anti-displacement leader killed

Pakur (Jharkhand): Valsha John, a woman who hailed from Kerala`s Ernakulam district and spearheaded an anti-displacement movement against a private company at Pachwara village in Pakur district, was killed by unidentified men.

"She was beaten with sticks and then axed to death at around mid-night on Tuesday. An FIR has been filed against unknown men," Pakur Superintendent of Police Amarnath Khanna told reporters here.

Valsha (52) had been staying in the village for about 12 years and led a protest against coal mining by Panem coal company Limited three years ago, he added. According to locals, the stir began after villagers feared displacement following coal mining. "She was away from the village for sometime and some villagers protested when she returned in the first week of November. Only after a probe can we give some details," the SP added.

Deputy Inspector General of Police, Santhal Pargana, V K Pandey said the police suspect that reports of her subsequent withdrawal from the stir might have been the reason behind the incident.