Staff Reporter

KHAMMAM: Tension gripped the forest villages in Yellandu and Gundala mandals as a Maoist sympathiser was gunned down reportedly by underground cadres of the CPI (ML New Democracy) in retaliation to the killing of their party leader, Pulusu Venkanna, in Polaram village late on Saturday night.

According to reports, armed members of the Madhu dalam of the New Democracy whisked away Banothu Kolia, a tribal youth from his farm around midnight and shot him dead.

Kolia was reportedly identified with the Maoist activities in the area and had been at loggerheads with the New Democracy activists for quite some time.

The long lull in the tribal habitations was shattered with the two killings.

A police outpost was put up in the village and additional forces were deployed in the area.