Suspected Maoists set ablaze a mobile phone tower of a private telecom giant at Gannavaram village in Bhadrachalam mandal shortly after Wednesday midnight.

The incident occurred about 25 km away from the temple town of Bhadrachalam. It comes just 20 days ahead of the general elections in the district slated for April 30.

Sources said that a group of suspected rebels set afire the battery room and other vital equipment of the mobile phone tower after pouring petrol on the components at the cell site in the village around 1.30 a.m.

Panel boards, batteries and other transmission apparatus were completely damaged in the incident. The incident came to light in the early hours of Thursday when some local villagers noticed the burnt equipment lying at the cell site.

The cellular phone services in the coverage area of the damaged cell site were reportedly paralysed following the incident.

The suspected rebels left behind a poster in the name of Maoist district committee near the damaged cell site.

Sources said that the poster contained slogans denouncing elections, Opencast Mines, Operation Green Hunt and Polavaram project.