Maoist leader accuses Odisha of failure to honour promises

Bhubaneswar, May 20 (PTI) Accusing Odisha Government of failing to fulfil promises made during recent hostage crisis, top Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda today said rebels may turn violent if the administration resorted to suppression. In a fresh audio message to a section of the media, the top leader of Odisha State Organising Committee of CPI (Maoist) alleged that the state government had failed to keep its commitment made during the hostage crisis. Claiming that his wife Subhashree Das alias Mili Panda was falsely implicated in Nayagarh attack case, the Naxal leader rued woman rebel Arati Majhi was yet to be freed. Panda criticised the statement made by Odisha Home Secretary U N Behera on May 15 that the state government had been following the commitments made during hostage crisis involving two Italian nationals and an MLA. “The state is taking all possible steps and will honour the commitments made during the hostage crisis in letter and spirit,” Behera had told reporters. Criticising the violence by left wing extremists, the home secretary had said “while the state is taking all possible efforts to maintain peace and order, Maoists continued violent activities killing innocent civilians and security personnel.” Refuting Behera’s claim, Panda said that no violence had taken place in the areas under the control of Odisha State Organising Committee of the CPI (Maoist). “If the state government uses suppressive steps against them, the rebels would (then) be forced to resort to violence,” he said. The top state official had pointed out that since March 14, the day two Italians were abducted, Maoists had killed four civilians and as many number of security personnel. Five police persons were also injured during the period. PTI SKN SUS

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