Maoists shot dead two persons in Odisha’s Malkangiri district suspecting them to be police informers even as a bandh was being observed by the ultras on Wednesday demanding withdrawal of security forces and halt to anti-naxal operations.

A group of heavily armed ultras stormed into Bahiliguma village in remote Chitrakonda area late Tuesday night and gunned down Satirao Hantala (45) and Laxmi Khara (37) after calling them out of their houses, Malkangiri Superintendent of Police Akhileswar Singh said.

The assailants left the place immediately after committing the crime and swiftly disappeared into the nearby forest, he said.

Hantala was believed to have worked for the Maoists earlier but appeared to have snapped ties later, the police said.

The ultras apparently killed the duo as they suspected them to be police informers.

Security personnel rushed to the area soon after the incident and a combing operation was launched to track the ultras, the police said.

The killing coincided with a bandh called by Maoists of Andhra-Odisha border area demanding immediate withdrawal of security forces including BSF from the area and halt to anti-naxal operations, official sources said.

Though the bandh had little impact in the area, vehicular movement was disrupted as many opted against moving out as a precautionary measure, they said.