PATNA: Four masked men with AK-47 rifles opened fire at school buses parked outside a private school in Bihar’s east Champaran district on Monday, leaving two drivers injured. The children were inside classrooms at that time.
The firing shattered the glasses of two buses and left holes on the bus walls. It injured school bus drivers Bikram Prasad and Ram Narayan Prasad, who were standing near the buses. They were rushed to a nearby hospital.
An atmosphere of panic engulfed the Cambridge Public School at Lakshmipur which falls under Raxaul police station. Police said that at around 11 am, when classes were on, four masked men on two motorcycles started firing at the school buses. They fled the spot after firing several rounds.
“Thank god the children and teachers were all inside the school at the time,” said Satish Giri, director of the school, which is located along the Kathmandu-New Delhi national highway. “I do not have any enmity with anyone. I am totally bewildered by this incident,” added Giri.
While sources said AK-47 rifles were used, a police official said bullets were fired from one AK-47 rifle and a .9 mm pistol. Deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Rakesh Kumar said, “A probe is underway. We have formed three teams to conduct raids.” “We are interrogating the locals to find out the motive behind the incident. There is no clue regarding who the target was,” he added. No one had been arrested till Monday night.
Sources attributed the incident to an attempt by criminals to extort money from the school owner and businessmen in the area by creating an atmosphere of fear.
In another incident in the district, police recovered a cooker bomb from near a hardware items shop at Sirni Bazar under Malahi police station on Monday. Bhanu Kumar, the shop owner, had allegedly been asked by some people to pay protection money. The bomb was diffused soon after recovery, said an official.