37 maoists arrested in Malkangiri in one year

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Bhubaneswar, Apr 29 (UNI) With the arrest of three Maoists during a joint operation by the Special Operation Group and Orissa police yesterday, as many as 37 left wing ultras were nabbed in the Naxal dominated Malkangiri district during the last one year.

Malkangiri Superintendent of Police Satish Kumar Gajbhiye said, ''Never in the history of anti-naxalite operation in Malkangiri so many hardcore Maoists were arrested by the police from the district in one year.'' He claimed that the SPG and police have been able to move to the most inaccessible areas inside the dense forest to nab the ultras and foiled their several attempts of landmine explosions targetting the police station and other places in the district.

Mr Gajbhiye said three hardcore maoists were arrested and sent to jail custody yesterday after a fierce gun battle inside the Jalmudi forest.

The naxalites, he said first opened fire when a patrolling party was returning to its base camp after a combing operation.

The rebels fired nearly 15 to 17 rounds to which the patrolling party retaliated and fired 37 rounds and managed to nab as many as eight from the camp.

But later, five of them were released after interrogation as they had no records of any maoist activities in the recent past.

The rest three identified as Soma Kabasi, Bhima Kabasi and Deba Kabasi were hardcore ultras and wanted by the Malkangiri police in series of incidents.

The SP said one SBBL gun, one live Tiffin bomb and highly explosive materials were seized form their possession.

The three maoists, Mr Gajbhiye said were mostly involved in the extortion in the district.

UNI DP PP RL HT1512

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