Malkangiri: A total of 180 Maoist cadres and over 500 sympathisers of the Red rebels surrendered Monday before security forces at a special public relations programme held at the BSF camp in Gurupriya at Swabhiman Anchal of this district. Those who surrendered burnt effigies of various Maoist leaders and pledged their allegiance to the Odisha government in the presence of BSF DIG Shailendra Kumar Sinha and Malkangiri SP Nitesh Wadhwani. The ultras said they have surrendered because they want to return to the mainstream. They also expressed satisfaction on the development works being implemented by the Odisha government. They also took an oath in this regard. Several materials like clothes and sports goods were distributed to all those present on the occasion.
Sources said people in the area were once finding it difficult to lead a normal life which was once a safe haven for the Maoist. The order of the ultras was the norm. Maoists used to kill people dubbing them ‘police informers’if anyone opposed them. They also prevented the people from raising the Tricolour on Independence Day and Republic Day.
However, things started changing for the better after the construction of Gurupriya bridge. Various developmental works undertaken by the Odisha government and the establishment of a BSF camp also boosted the confidence of people living in the area. The success in getting so many people surrender at one go has been achieved due to the joint operation by the district administration, Odisha Police, BSF, the district voluntary force and personnel of the Special Operation Groups, the DIG and SP said. The ultras who surrendered also expressed their opposition towards the Maoist ideology by burning their dresses while giving like ‘Maobadi (Maoist) Murdabad’, said an official.
The militia includes both men and women who hail from Dabal Pahad, Ralegada, Chintalduli, Korrapalli, Tekpadar, Palankrayi, Tatipahad, Eskapalli, Sarukabandha, Durgam, Banajholi, Chikatpalli, Jajpalli, Gajalmamidi and Sitapalli villages in Ralegada gram panchayat locality under the jurisdiction of Papermetla police station Commandant Binod Soren of 88 BSF Battalion, SDPO Anshuman Dwivedi, police official Lakshmi Narayan Muduli and Jodamba IIC Chandrakant Tandi were present on the occasion.