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Toddler caught in ‘crossfire’

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K. Suresh at a private hospital in Bhadrachalam. —
K. Suresh at a private hospital in Bhadrachalam. —

D. Chandra Bhaskar Rao

Tribal boy’s fingers chopped off in police-naxal tussle

BHADRACHALAM: One-and-a-half year-old Kattam Suresh had three of his fingers gone for ever and even the thumb was partly slit. The tribal boy from Maraigudem, a Chhattisgarh village, has been undergoing treatment for the past ten days in a private hospital in the temple town. The loss of fingers was attributed to a freak accident in the kitchen. His father Doolaiah had no other option but to remain tight-lipped. “Otherwise, it will be difficult to save my child,” he says.

But the near and dear visiting the toddler in the hospital, made no secret of brutal way his fingers were chopped off.

It is the handiwork of none else but the same band of people who killed the boy’s mother, Kattam Kanakamma and eight others at Gumpadu, a forest village in the neighbouring Dantewada district almost a fortnight ago.

Those who raided the village put the community to torture for information about the Maoists’ whereabouts. Failing to elicit information about the activities of the outlawed Left-wing extremists, they allegedly unleashed a reign of terror.

The little boy who was crying on the mother’s body also incurred the wrath of assailants.

Kanakamma who hailed from Maraigudem had been to Gumpadu along with her child to visit her parents and paid the price.

Some villagers allege police role, while others blame the Salva Judum for the killings.

Rude shock

Doolaiah who was in for a rude shock after knowing about the fate of his family, rushed his child to the temple town.

Some private doctors hesitated to treat the boy fearing that it may invite the wrath of the police.

He avoided going to the government hospital since it would catch the attention of the police who might brand him as a Maoist. ‘I had no other go but to lie to get my child attended by the doctors, he confessed.


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