At least 20 people have been arrested from a town in Orissa’s Koraput district on charges of rioting and arson. They also attacked a local police station and looted weapons from policemen after injuring them, officials said Monday.

The people were arrested Sunday from Narayan Patna, about 500 km from Bhubaneswar, where a mob of over 300 attacked a police station Friday afternoon and looted weapons, Deputy Inspector General of Police Sanjeeb Panda told IANS.

The people who attacked the police station were activists of the Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangha (CMAS), a Maoist-backed outfit. They were protesting frequent police patrolling in the area by paramilitary forces and police, Mr. Panda said.

The police had opened fire that day when the mob tried to loot weapons, killing two tribals. A police inspector was also injured when the mob attacked him.

The situation continued to remain tense in the town with CMAS activists refusing to cremate the dead bodies of those killed in the Friday police firing. They have announced that they will hold a massive rally Monday.

“More than a thousand armed policemen have been deployed at Narayan Patna,” Mr. Panda said.

The CMAS has denied any links with Maoists and said it was fighting for the rights of tribals in the region.