With speculation rife about prominent Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda launching a regional outfit in Odisha, the central committee of the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist) has expelled him from the party for anti-party activities.

Mr. Panda, who hit the headlines in the aftermath of the killing of Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Swami Lakshmanananda four years ago and abduction of two Italian nationals a few months ago, was working as secretary of the Odisha State Organising Committee of the CPI(Maoist) since 2008.

In a 16-page letter released last month, Mr. Panda openly declared that he was completely dissociating himself from the People’s War line and its revolutionary practice, according to a press release issued by CPI (Maoist) Politburo Member Anand on Friday night.

“In the most abominable, crooked and conspiratorial manner, he [Mr. Panda] betrayed the party and revolution and the great cause of the toiling masses, particularly the oppressed masses of Odisha and proved himself to be a renegade,” Mr. Anand said in the release.

“His 16-page letter is full of rotten lies and distortions. It is an open secret that he hurled them with the evil and appalling intention of fulfilling his selfish political motives that serve the ruling classes,” Mr. Anand said in the release dated July 16.

That Mr. Panda had developed differences with the Central Committee of the CPI (Maoist) had become clear recently when he released an audio statement describing himself as secretary of the Odisha Maoist Party instead of secretary of the Odisha State Organising Committee of the CPI (Maoist).