Maoists gun down contractor

Close on the heels of the abduction of two Italian tourists in Kandhamal, the Maoists shot a contractor to death in Bargarh district on Sunday morning leading to a lot of panic in the region. The  deceased contractor – identified as  Mohd Itar Mahamad – was entrusted with the construction of a check dam at Patrapali, under Paikmal block in the district.

The Maoists came down in a group in the morning and forcibly took the contractor to a neighbouring jungle and gunned him down. Itar hailed from a neighbouring Badtunda village.

Police sources said the victim was involved in a dispute with locals over the ceiling on surplus land and had received threats for his forceful occupation of land belonging to some landless villagers. “Some poor villagers had received the land under ceiling surplus, but he was occupying the land forcefully. The matter was pending in high court,” said Padmapur SDPO, NC Dansana.

He said police recovered the dead body in the evening on Sunday and a case has been registered with the local police. The body will be handed over to the family of the decesed after autopsy on Monday.

“About 20-25 people in uniform came to the spot and asked the contractor to follow them. They also instructed us to stay calm as they did not want to do us any harm. We found him dead when we went to the spot after hearing the gun shot,” said a labourer engaged in the construction work.

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