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DGP Abhay asks Maoists to surrender to make Odisha free from Left-Wing Extremism

Phulbani: A day after two Maoists were gunned down in Kandhamal district, Odisha Director General of Police Abhay on Friday appealed to members of the outlawed organisation to surrender as the security force is determined to make the state free from Left-Wing Extremism.
During a visit to Kandhamal district to review the situation, the Director-General of Police (DGP) said, the Maoists should shun violence and return to the mainstream by taking advantage of the “attractive” surrender and rehabilitation policy announced for them by the state government.
“We once again appeal to Maoists operating in Kandhamal and elsewhere in Odisha to lay down arms. They should join the mainstream as the state government has a very generous surrender and rehabilitation policy for them,” Abhay told reporters after holding a meeting with senior police officers.
The DGP said that the police is determined to make Kandhamal a Maoist-free district as done in five other districts recently.
“Our aim is to eliminate Left Wing Extremism (LWE) from the entire state,” he said.
If the Maoists fail to surrender, they will have to face tough action as anti-naxal operations will be stepped up to eliminate the LWE menace from the state, the DGP said.
The police chiefs call comes a day after two Maoists, including a woman, were gunned down during an exchange of fire with security personnel in a forest in Tumudibandh area.
A fortnight ago, the Odisha government had approved a proposal of the state police to exclude Angul, Boudh, Sambalpur, Deogarh and Nayagarh districts from the areas that are entitled to benefits under a central scheme for LWE-hit places.
No naxal activities had been reported from the five districts in the past two years, a senior police officer said.
As many as 11 districts have been removed from the list of Maoist-hit areas in a span of two years, he said.
While 13 Naxals had surrendered before the police in 2019, 17 Maoists joined the mainstream so far in 2020. At least seven red rebels were neutralised in Kandhamal district this month, the police officer said.
At present, ten of the 30 districts in the state have Maoist presence — Koraput, Malkangiri, Nabarangpur, Rayagada, Sundergarh, Kandhamal, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Bargarh and Bolangir, he said.
Apart from carrying out anti-Maoist operations, development activities in the affected areas have also helped curb Naxal activities, the officer said.
Seven major roads are under construction in Malkangiri, another LWE-hit district, he said.

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