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Three Maoists including two women surrender before Odisha police
Three Maoists associated with the Sabyasachi Panda of Odisha Maobadi Party surrendered before the superintendent of police Ashis Kumar Singh at Chatrapur Ganjam district of Odisha on Tuesday. The surrendered rebels include area committee member Laxman Raita and two women members Mamita Gomanga and Ester Raita.

PERTINENTLY, THE state government had announced a reward of Rs 3 Lakh for the capture of Laxman Raita and Rs 1 lakh each for two women members. Raita was involved in the kidnapping of two Italian tourists by Sabyasachi group. Six associates of Sabyasachi, including these three, have surrendered before the Ganjam S.P. till now.

Sumitra Mallick (20) was an associate of Sabyasachi, who surrendered on 16 November; Somson Mallick (25) a main courier of Sabyasachi, surrendered along with Sona Majhi (22) on 22 November.

The Maoists, during their surrender ceremony, alleged that senior rebel leaders sexually exploited the women cadre. According to Mamita, her hands and legs had been tied by Sabyasachi to prevent her escape while some cadres from Chhattisgarh also raped her. Raita also alleged that women cadres were raped by Chhattisgarh cadre in connivance with Panda.

In the presence of pressmen, all th three rebels alleged that Panda was involved in 'regular extortion of money from traders amd liquor vendors. "We are fed up of the wrong ideology of violence," they told media.

Further, Laxman also claimed that on 14 November he had gone to nearby village to procure materials of day to day use when the exchange of fire took place between Sabyasachi group and security forces in the Baliguda forest. "After that I did not prefer to return to Sabyasachi and prefered to surrender," Laxman said.

Meanwhile, Panda issuing another audio statement criticized the police for indulging in vilification campaign against the Maoists, particularly against him. The government launched an operation against him, using the peace talks as veil, he alleged.

He, however said that he was still open to the peace process if the government shunned violence. State police sources told this citizen journalist that Panda's tone suggested that he has been on the defensive following the intensive operation initiated by the security forces and 'wants to give himself up, but is looking for suitable opportunity for his surrender'.

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