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Continuing their campaign against ‘police informers,’ suspected Maoists killed two more people in Gadchiroli, taking the total number of civilian murders in the past twelve days to 7.
“Two persons, Nirmal Goswami and Samru Kosmi, in their forties, were shot dead by Naxals on the night intervening Friday and Saturday, branding them to be police informers, near Markegaon village in Dhanora tahsil,” Superintendent of Police, Shailesh Balkawade told media

“The Naxals had left a pamphlet saying the two were passing on information to the police. That’s not true. They were not our informers. We always accept when there is anyone who is really our informer since we have to take care of his family under the government scheme, ” Balkawade added.

The Superintendent of Police attributed the series of civilian killings in Gadchiroli to “Naxal frustration due to their recent failures.”

“Last year was the worst year for the Naxals, with 50 of them getting killed in our operations. Also, last year was the first year in Gadchiroli’s Naxal history when no policeman was killed. This has really frustrated them (Naxals) and hence they are resorting to the killing of poor tribals,” he added.

The Naxals had gunned down three villagers from Kasnasur in Bhamragad tehsil on January 21 holding them responsible for last years police ambush of 40 Naxals. Later, they also killed two more people.

Incidentally, Markegaon village had hit headlines in 2009, when 15 policemen were killed in an ambush by Naxalites near the village. It was followed by two more encounters that year in which 33 more policemen were ambushed elsewhere in the district. The year was worst for the police which had lost 52 of their men fighting with the Naxals.