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Page last updated at 15:51 GMT, Tuesday, 16 June 2009 16:51 UK

Maoist 'rampage' in West Bengal

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Hundreds of Maoists backed by thousands of villagers have seized the ruling party's last stronghold in a troubled part of India's West Bengal state.

Armed rebels are reportedly patrolling roads around the village of Dharampur in the Lalgarh area after police fled. Three people were killed, reports say.

Rebels have been entrenching themselves in Lalgarh since last November and now have almost total control of the area.

In the latest incident they set fire to an abandoned police post and reportedly demolished the house of a local communist leader.

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