Claiming responsibility for the gunning down of two local CPI(M) leaders in West Midnapore, top Maoist leader Kishenji on Sunday night vowed to give a “befitting reply to the killing of two tribal villagers at the hands of security forces“.

“We own responsibility for the killing of CPI(M) leaders Khagen Mahato and Gopal Mahato for their anti—people activities and corruption. But we will give a befitting reply for the deaths of two villagers and injury to many at the hands of security forces, which virtually turned this into a ’bloody Sunday’,” Maoist leader K Koteswar Rao alias Kishenji told PTI over phone from an undisclosed location.

He alleged the joint forces opened fire under the pretext of fighting Maoists on a rally of 3,000 tribals in West Midnapore district on Sunday.

Kishenji said while at least nine persons were injured in the firing, many others were still missing.

He said the Sidhu Kanu Gana Militia wing of the PCPA will be strengthend for “future activities”.