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Odisha on high alert as Martyrs’ Week of Maoists begins


Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Koraput/ Rayagada, July 28:

The border districts of Odisha have been asked to remain on high alert and take all possible measures to foil attempts by Maoists to create violence during their Martyrs’ Week which began today, a senior official of the Odisha police said.

Maoist banner at Muniguda's Hatadahikhal ( pic- Simanchal Panda)
Maoist banner at Muniguda’s Hatadahikhal ( pic- Simanchal Panda)

The left wing ultras observe the Martyrs’ Week every year from July 28 to August 3 in memory of the their slain comrades and usually resort to violent activities during this period.

In view of this, massive search and combing operations have been carried out in all Maoist-prone areas of the state, the senior official said.

Banners exhorting people to pay respect to the slain Maoists have appeared at differennt parts of Koraput, Malkangiri and Rayagada. In Rayagada’s Muniguda block, a large banner announcing the observance of the Martyrs’ Week has  appeared on the main road at Hatadahikhal.

Reports from Koraput said that over 500 personnel comprising the district police, BSF, SOG and CoBRA units have been pressed into action in Nayaranpatna, Bandhugan, Lamtaput, Pottangi, Nandapur and Boipariguda areas of the district to flush out the Maoists.

The district administration has cancelled 14 buses in Koraput-Rayagada, Jeypore-Malkangiri, Jeypore-Parvatipuram, Jeypore-Paralakhemundi, Jeypore-Phulbani, Jeypore-Rayagada, Jeypore-Gunupur, Jeypore-Kashipur and Koraput-Gupteswar routes in anticipation of possible attacks by the red rebels.

“Apart from this, buses plying in Jeypore-Bhadrachalam, Jeypore-Motu, Jeypore-Malkangiri, Jeypore-Padia and Bhawanipatna-Motu routes through Malkangiri have been cancelled for a week till August 3”, Rajendra Pujari, Jeypore divisional manager of the Odisha State Road Transport Corporation (OSRTC), told reporters here.

Besides, some trains have been diverted and short-terminated for a week.

According JN Majhi, station manager of Koraput station, the Vishakhapatnam-Koraput-Kirandul Passenger train would ply up to Jagdalpur till August 3.

Elaborate security has been beefed up in Koraput district headquarters with deployment of security forces at sadar police station, traffic square and Housing Board colonies.