Maoist bandh hits life, ultras kill a tribal in Kandhamal

Bhubaneswar
21 Oct 2017

Normal life in five southern Odisha districts was hit in a dawn-to-dusk bandh called today by Maoists, who allegedly killed a man in Kandhamal district and abducted a woman during the agitation.
The 12-hour bandh was called by the Bansadhara-Ghumusura-Nagabali division of the CPI-Maoist demanding immediate arrest of culprits in the gang rape of a minor at Kunduli village in Koraput district, a stop to violence against tribal women and solution to the Mahanadi water row. It affected life in Rayagada, Kandhamal, Kalahandi, Gajapati and Ganjam districts despite deployment of BSF, CRPF, SOG and general police in sensitive places to ensure peace, officials said. During the bandh, government buses remained off the roads in the five districts, official sources said. Private transportation vehicles were in operation in urban centres, where, schools, colleges and shops remained open, they said.
The rebels blocked NH-59 with logs near Tagada bridge, Baliguda and Tumudibandh in Kandhamal district. Banners urging people to make the agitation a success was put up by them at several places. On Bhawanipatna-Rayagada route, there was complete halt to vehicular traffic. Vehicular movement in Boudh district was also affected due to the bandh despite heavy security arrangements by the district administration, they said. The body of a man allegedly killed by Maoists was recovered by the police from a place in Kandhamal-Kalahandi border. "We can say whether the man was killed by Maoists only after proper verification," DGP R P Sharma told newspersons here. Villagers said that a group of armed rebels came to the village at around 1 am and forcibly took away the man, identified as Mohan Majhi and killed him this morning.
The ultras also allegedly abducted a woman suspecting her to be a police from Lahidi village near Gumudumaha in Kandhamal district during the bandh. Her whereabouts are yet to be known. CPI-Maoist Umakant termed the ruling BJD government s movement against the construction of barrages on the upstream of Mahanadi river by Chhattisgarh as "shedding of crocodile tears." He called upon peoples movements in Odisha to fight against Chhattisgarh government s alleged move to deprive farmers of their rights on Mahanadi waters.
The gang rape, against which the maoists have called the bandh, took place on October 10 in which a student of class nine was allegedly tortured by four men in combat uniform near Kunduli in Koraput district. The Maoists had killed a 'gaon saathi' in Kandhamal district four days ago.