The Maoist leader who allegedly killed Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Laxmanananda Saraswati in Kandhamal in August 2008 and then surrendered was on Wednesday given a reward of Rs 10 lakh by the Andhra Pradesh Police.
In Andhra Pradesh,senior police officers said,Maoists who surrender get the reward they carry on their heads.
Had a policeman caught him,then he would have got it. But when a Maoist surrenders,he gets either the reward money announced on his head or the money announced in states surrender policy,whichever is higher, said an official.
Dunna Kesava Rao,41,is the first surrendered Maoist in Orissa to get the reward after the scheme came into effect in February this year.
The money was handed over to Raos mother by a team of Andhra police officials at Jharpara jail in Bhubaneswar,where the former rebel is currently lodged.
Rao alias Azad,a resident of Andhra Pradesh Srikakulam district,allegedly led the group of the 40-odd Maoists who gunned down Saraswati and four of his disciples at his Shankaracharya Kanyashram at Jalespeta. Saraswatis killing sparked the 2008 Kandhamal riots that left 38 people dead.
Rao,a member of the Orissa State Organising Committee of CPI (Maoist) headed by Sabyasachi Panda,surrendered before the Andhra Pradesh police in May last year. Besides Saraswatis killing,he is also accused in several cases in Orissa and Andhra Pradesh,including attacks on police stations and policemen.