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Not a fake encounter, says District Police Chief

District Police Chief Shiva Vikram has denied reports that the Maoists killed in an encounter with the police have shown willingness to surrender.

He said such reports were baseless. It had been two years since the government announced schemes for the surrender for Maoists, offering them rehabilitation and exemption from criminal cases. Mr. Vikram said there was no positive response from any of the Maoist to the government offer for surrender.

He said the Maoists began firing at a Thunderbolt commando team who were searching the forests on Monday. The commando team was approaching a shed they found in the forest near Manjakkatti .

The police said Maoists Karthik, Aravind, and Rama were killed when the commandos returned fire. Mani Vasakam and two others had withdrawn from the scene after the shootout on Monday.

The police said Mani Vasakam and others attacked the police and revenue officials when they were about to conduct an inquest of the bodies on Tuesday morning. The large team of inquest officials, including the RDO and doctors, had to lie down to escape the Maoist attack for about two hours.

The commandos had given the revenue officials cover when the Maoists led by Mani Vasakam attacked. Mr. Vikram also denied the allegations that the police attack was one-sided. He said the local people were witness to the shootout that took place between the police and the Maoists. He denied the allegations that it was a fake encounter.

Source: thehindu.com

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