Dreaded woman Maoist commander killed in Maharashtra

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Gadchiroli (Maharashtra), April 20 (IANS) Security forces gunned down a dreaded woman Maoist leader, carrying a cash reward of Rs.6 lakh on her head, in a gun-battle in the thick forests of Bhamragad, an official said here on Wednesday.

The fierce gun-battle between the commandos of the Anti-Naxal Operations (ANO) force and the Maoists took place on Tuesday during a regular combing operation undertaken by the security forces.

While a majority of the Maoists fled into the jungles, police later recovered the body of Sarita Kolu Kovase, 26, deputy commander of the Perimili Dalam, and the wife of the its commander, Dolesh Madi Atram alias Sainath.

Police have recovered an arms cache from the area including one SLR with 36 live rounds of ammunition, three magazines, a radio, one mine, wire bundles, sets of clothing, publicity banners, a medical kit and naxal literature from her.

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“Sarita had joined the Dalam around 10 years ago and has been among the most wanted for 60 crimes including murder, kidnapping and ambush,” the official said.

Police are hopeful that her elimination would deal a paralysing blow to the Dalam and further weaken the Maoist influence in the areas even as the security forces carry out a campaign to lure them back into the social and national mainstream.

In 2016 alone, police have succeeded in convincing 23 dreaded Maoists to surrender and rehabilitate themselves. Besides, nine were arrested and five have been shot dead.

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