Maoists ask people to boycott election in Wayanad, commando force initiate action

As per reports, the four-member Maoist group, led by CP Moitheen, came to Wayanad’s Kambala around 6.10 am on April 24.
Maoists ask people to boycott election in Wayanad, commando force initiate action
Screengrab/ Mathrubhumi News
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Two days before the second phase polling of the Lok Sabha election in which Kerala votes, suspected Maoist presence was reported in Kambamala, near Thalapuzha of Wayanad district. Early morning on Wednesday, April 24, the Maoist group came to the plantation area and asked residents to boycott the election. As per reports, the four-member group, led by CP Moitheen, came around 6.10 am.

Upon receiving the news, Police and Thunderbolts, the elite commando force of the Kerala police under the Indian Reserve Battalion, initiated operations in the forest zone of Kambamala. The police have identified the four-member gang as CP Moideen, Santhosh, Soman, and Ashique.

Video footage captured on a mobile phone from the scene shows two members of the group talking to the residents. Both of them  carrying weapons. “There is no benefit to voting in the election,” one of them said.

Kambamala is a plantation area and most residents are plantation workers. The residents reportedly turned down the Maoists’ demand, which led to a conversation between the residents and Maoists for around 20 minutes.

In September 2023, a gang of Maoists had raided the office of Mananthavady divisional manager of the Forest Development Corporation in the same village, Kambamala, and also threatened the employees. They demanded better residential facilities for plantation labourers. They also destroyed the cameras that were installed by the police for Maoist surveillance.  

The plantation workers staged a protest after this and demanded security, since the Maoist incursions were repeated there.

In November last year, police captured two Maoists after an exchange of fire. They were identified as Chandru and Unnimaya, both allegedly top cadres of the Bansura Dalam of the Communist Party of India (Maoist). 

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