Cherla (Kothagudem): The killing of abducted ex-MPTC N Srinivas Rao, even as his safe return was expected, has sent shockwaves among politicos in agency villages and all over the district.
He was elected Peddamidisileru MPTC in the previous election and his term was due to end officially this August. Rao’s killing is the first incident in Telangana after the formation of the State wherein a ruling party leader was abducted and eliminated by Maoists. This incident has become a cause of concern for leaders of all political parties.
Though there were incidents of political leaders getting abducted by Maoists, they were left off later. It might be recalled that in 2014, TRS Bhadrachalam constituency in-charge Mane Ramakrishna and four others were abducted from Pusuguppa village of Cherla mandal in Kothagudem district. They were released after two days of confinement without any mediation. Based on that experience, Srinivas Rao’s family members, Adivasis and the police had expected the release of the former MPTC.
Sources said an Adivasi leader had met Maoists on Thursday and mediated for the return of Srinivas Rao, which was expected to happen on Friday. The Maoists had also killed Buchaiah, an Adivasi from Cherla, in February 2017 after branding him as a police informer.
Meanwhile, the district police sounded an alarm in the agency villages of the district and intensified their search operations. The local leaders have reportedly been put on alert following the latest killing.
Kothagudem Superintendent of Police Sunil Dutt, reacting to the incident, condemned the killing of Rao and described the incident as a heinous act. He said Maoists killed a farmer just to create panic and threaten the Adivasis.
He dismissed the allegations that Srinivas Rao was a police informer. “He is not an informer but a farmer who used to help villagers and earned a good reputation. We will take serious action against the Maoists who resort to anti-social acts,” he added.