Four abducted policemen released

Staff Reporter

Combing operation intensified

Normal life remains paralysed

BERHAMPUR: Four personnel of the Orissa State Armed Police (OSAP) were abducted and later released by Maoists under mysterious conditions in the naxal infested Malkangiri district of south Orissa.

According to police sources these jawans of the OSAP remained as hostages of the naxals for over 18 hours. They were released by their abductors without any harm done to them on Saturday. But the naxals allegedly took away the mobile phones of the policemen, around Rs.12,000 with them and the grocery items they were carrying to their anti-naxal police camp. The Maoists had abducted these OSAP personnel on Friday while they were returning back to their camp at Janabai from a market at Chitrakonda after marketing for their ration.

According to the Malkangiri district Superintendent of Police (SP) Satyabrata Bhoi, the jawans were travelling in a private jeep along with locals. Around 10 naxals stopped the jeep. They sorted out the police personnel who were taken to a naxal camp operating in the nearby jungle. The other persons in the jeep were allowed to travel in the jeep to their destinations.

Investigation begins

Following this abduction combing operation was intensified in the area which borders naxal infested areas of Andhra Pradesh. But before the police could track them down, the four abducted jawans returned to their camp at Janbai at around 1 p.m. on Saturday.

The real reason behind this sudden abduction by naxals and the release of hostages unscathed without any demands remains a mystery. Police officials have started an investigation to find out the real reason behind the whole affair.

It may be noted that the Maoists are observing People’s Liberation Guerilla Army (PLGA) week from December 2 to garner support for their outlawed organisation.

Apart from it normal life remained paralysed in Kandhamal, Gajapati and Rayagada districts of south Orissa for the second day on Saturday due to the two-day bandh call by Maoists to protest the killing of a man by Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) forces in Gajapati district in November.

Despite tightened security was intensified police patrolling bandh disrupted vehicular traffic in these three districts. Shops and markets in most remote areas remained closed but offices and educational institutions were open with low attendance. Effect of the bandh was more evident in Mohana and Adaba areas of Gajapati district, Bisamakatak, Chandrapur, Gudari areas of Rayagada district and Daringibadi, Raikia, Kotagada, Tumudibandh, Brahmanigaon areas of Kandhamal district. Road communication between Berhampur and three districts was completely disrupted.

Through posters and banners demanded removal of security forces including CRPF and demanded Rs. 10 lakh compensation for the family of the man killed at Kutuniganda in Gajapati district by CRPF bullet.