The Telangana Police have stepped up patrolling and combing operations in Bhadradri-Kothagudem district, along the Chhattisgarh border, after drone cameras spotted Maoists entering the state on three different occasions. Special Intelligence Branch officials said that there has been an increase in movement of Maoists in the area and they appeared to be regrouping and holding meetings.
The Maoist leadership asked their Telugu cadre, who have been operating in Chhattisgarh, to move to Telangana and East Godavari district in Andhra Pradesh to diffuse tensions between Telugu and Chhattisgarh cadres, officials said.
In the last 30 days, eight Maoists have been shot dead in alleged encounters in the forests along the border with Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra. On Wednesday night, three Maoists, including two women cadres, were shot dead in Chennapuram forests in Bhadradri-Kothagudem district and police recovered a rifle and explosives. Superintendent of Police Sunil Dutt said that a combing team came across a group of Maoists on Wednesday afternoon and there was an exchange of fire, but the Maoists managed to escape.
“We launched a combing operation in the area to track the escaped Maoists and late in the evening there was an encounter in which three of them were shot dead,” Dutt said.
Movement of naxals was also reported in Komaram Bheem Asifabad district where two Maoists were shot dead in another alleged encounter recently. Another Maoist from Chattisgarh, Dudi Devulu, who allegedly died en route to a hospital, was shot dead by police in Gundala in Bhadradri-Kothagudem on September 3. The CPI (Maoist) released a statement accusing the police of staging a fake encounter. “He was going to a hospital when police caught him and shot him in cold blood,” said the statement.
In the first week of this month, Director General of Police M Mahender Reddy toured the border districts for three days to review security and strategy to deal with the Maoists.
On September 6 night, a police team had a narrow escape as Maoists triggered an IED at Tippapuram in Bhadradri Kothagudem. A few hours after the explosion, there was an exchange of fire between Maoists and a police team in which two Maoists were shot dead.
“At all the encounter sites we found arms and explosives. In the kit bags we found literature and letters urging the cadres to target elected representatives and security forces. The letters also urged cadres to avenge deaths of their comrades killed in fake encounters,” an official said.
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