Kandhamal villagers still living in fear

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Kandhamal, Apr 16 (ANI): Shadow of last year's communal riots still looms large over villagers in Kandhmal in Orissa, making them ask for security on the polling day.

Though the people are coming back to their villages, they are still living under a shadow of fear.

And with the elections due to be held on April 16 in the state, they want proper security arrangements from the administration to be safe enough to cast their votes.

"We want to cast our votes, but we are scared to do so. Our polling booth is five kilometers away from our village. We are under threat and the government is not providing us protection in our village. If the CRPF or police will provide us security, then we are ready to go and vote, otherwise we can't," said Duryodhan Mallick, a resident.

The police on their part have taken strict security measures and are promising to ensure free and fair polls in the region.

"We have made proper security arrangements which include mobile patrolling, area domination, special operations in Maoist infested areas and security arrangements for voters residing in relief camps. We hope that there will be free and fair elections," said S. Praveen Kumar, Superintendent of Police (SP), Kandhamal. By Sharda Lahangir (ANI)

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