VISAKHAPATNAM: Maoists kidnapped four persons, including a woman, from Onukudeli area near the Andhra-Odisha border in the late hours of Saturday. While the woman was released on Sunday evening, the three others continued to be held captive by the rebels.
The Maoists said the four persons were kidnapped for extorting money from poor tribals and informing the police about their movements in the Agency area. Among those picked up by the rebels were B V Ramprasad and Janaki Routh from Onukudeli area and Lakshman Pangi and Daya Challan from Bada Durai and Channa Durai villages neighbouring Onukudeli. They claimed that Ramprasad, a suspended employee of Machkund hydroelectric power project, is a police informer and Janaki was dealing in illicit liquor trade. The rebels said both Lakshman Pangi and Daya, who were Maoist sympathisers in the past, were collecting money from innocent tribals in their name.
“All the four were warned earlier, but they did not heed our warning. That is why we kidnapped them,” the Maoists said in a press release. While Janaki being a woman was released, the others were still kept in captivity. In another note signed by Chandramouli of AOB zonal committee, a warning was issued to Gopi Sami Reddy alias Jugal and his son Gopi Sandesh alias Suryam. Both father and son were former Maoists and Sandesh had recently surrendered. In the letter, they claimed that both the father and son duo were causing harm to their movement by disclosing vital information on their cadres and landmines to the police. They alleged that because of their disclosure four of their comrades were killed in encounters and a number of planted landmines were discovered by the police team. They warned the duo of serious consequences if they did not mend their ways.