Alleging that Maoists who died on April 22 at Gadchiroli district were killed in a fake encounter, the Telagana state committee of the CPI (Maoists) on Saturday claimed that the cadres were poisoned to death by the police.
In a press release issued in Telugu, the Maoists alleged that with the help of informers, security personnel poisoned the food of the cadres. They claimed that after the Maoists died, the police personnel pumped a few bullets into the bodies of some cadres and threw them into Indravati river, while saying that the toll could go up in post operation searches. The release stated that the alleged encounter took place a few days before April 22.
It added that in name of ‘Operation Samadhan’, the Union and state government had jointly undertaken a series of attacks on the Maoists. It accused the government was waging a war against adivasis to make way for multi-national companies. The release claimed the attacks started after Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Bijapur district in Chhattisgarh on April 14.
When contacted, SP Abhinav Deshmukh said: “These are baseless reports. How can so many people be sedated or poisoned? Each one of them will take his or her own time to be sedated, making it obvious to the others that something was amiss. That’s why we have preserved the viscera.”
“Maoists are very intelligent. They never will eat simultaneously. They eat in batches to rule out any foul play. So, to say that they can be easily sedated and then be killed is a figment of rumour monger’s imagination,” said another senior officer.
Meanwhile, local residents from Gattepalli had approached the police on Thursday to report that around five girls and three boys had gone missing from the village on April 21. They had alleged that the eight youths had accompanied senior Maoist Sainath, who was killed in Sunday’s operation. It is suspected the eight may have died in the operation.