Chikkamagaluru: Naxals put up posters, warn villagers against voting
Chikkamagaluru: People of Budakabailu village in Sringeri taluk woke up Friday morning to find posters allegedly pasted by Naxals on walls of shops, water tanks, at the bus stop and other places, advising them to boycott the taluk and zilla panchayat elections to show their opposition to the tiger project, which could lead to their eviction from forests and for better water supply and roads . Seeing the posters, the Anti -Naxal Force and the Sringeri police swung into action to remove them and began a combing operation in the area to flush out Naxals, if any, in the region to make sure the polls on Saturday are held peacefully. Chikkamagaluru Superintendent of Police Santosh Babu told reporters later that it was not clear whether the Naxals were behind the posters.
Naxal gunned down in Chhattisgarh
A naxal was today gunned down in an exchange of fire with security forces in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Sukma district, police said. The skirmish occurred in the forests of Tarlaguda village under Golapalli police station limits between a joint team of security forces and rebels, a senior police official told PTI. A composite squad of Special Task Force (STF) and District Reserve Group (DRG) led by Sukma Superintendent of Police D Shravan and Additional SP Santosh Singh were carrying out anti-naxal operation in the interiors of Golapalli, around 500 kms away from the state capital, for the past few days, he said.
Chhattisgarh Police: 31 Maoists killed since January 1 this year
Chhattisgarh Police on Friday said at least 31 bodies of Maoists have been recovered since the start of the year with nine alleged Maoists being killed in six big operations in the past three weeks alone. Senior police officers said the number was achieved after a shift in strategy that has seen an increased use of District Reserve Group (DRG), a unit of the state police, that has among its recruits several surrendered Maoists.
Bastar Inspector General of Police SRP Kalluri said, “The turning point in Bastar has been the use of the DRG. I have no hesitation in saying that much of the credit goes to lower rung surrendered Maoist cadres, who have specific information. They never lose their abilities in a jungle, and they are motivated to see that Naxalism ends so that they can go back to their villages.” Besides the number of dead, the police have also arrested 141 Maoists with 90 arrested from Sukma district alone so far this year. “There have been encounters and arrests. Now even SPs are heading operations,” said DM Awasthi, Special DG, Anti-Naxal operations.
Two Maoists arrested
Reportedly involved in landmine blast that killed 2 BSF personnel
Two Maoist militias, who reportedly triggered the landmine blast that killed two Border Security Force personnel, including a deputy commandant, were arrested in Koraput district of Odisha on Friday. They were identified as Basudev Pradhani (37) of Kadkipani village and Bhagaban Minarbalia (28) Mathpadiaguda. According to police sources, both were part of the Maoist group that had triggered the landmine blast on January 8 afternoon, targeting the BSF personnel travelling on bikes on the Ramgiri-Dandabadi road inside Kaliajhula jungle under Boipariguda police station limits.
The slain BSF personnel were head constable Sibasish Panda and deputy commandant Sunil Kumar Behera. They were part of the 143rd BSF battalion, now deployed in Koraput district, for anti-Maoist operations. The BSF troop targeted by the Maoists was returning to their base at Ramgiri after combing operation in the region following murder of a trader named Bapi Samant at Dandabadi village in the same police station area on January 7 night. According to the anti-Naxalite cell of Koraput district, Basudev and Bhagaban were also involved in Bapi’s murder.
Both these Maoists were part of Boipariguda area committee under Malkangiri-Koraput border division of the outlawed CPI-(Maoist) organisation. As per initial findings, they were key members of this area committee of Maoists with close links with its leaders. They were working for the Maoists for the past five years, police sources said. Initially they were only providing food, shelter and strategic support to the Naxalites. Later they got promoted as militias to get directly involved in violent acts of Leftist extremists. The arrest coincides with the visit of Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to Koraput on Friday to review the anti-Naxalite operations continuing in the region.