Almost two weeks after several people were killed in the alleged Maoist-police encounter along the Andra-Odisha border, the CPI (Maoist) has issued a statement on Friday saying as many as nine people who were killed were unarmed Adivasis and not Maoists.
They also claimed that the police had killed several Adivasis who were fishing in a river nearby the Maoist camp.
Some unarmed Adivasi youngsters, both men and women, from the neighbouring villages, who were with us at that time started to run towards a nearby village when the cops came. The police shot indiscriminately at those who were running away and also the Adivasis who were fishing in the rivulet adjacent to our camp and killed some. Many of the Adivasis were injured in the firing and some of them were arrested aliveThe CPI (Maoist) statement
The statement also says four Adivasis, who were taken into custody on the encounter day were killed in the next day morning.
On the next day, 25 October, some more additional police forces were brought in and the whole area was searched to prevent our comrades from escape. Four ordinary Adivasi young men and women who were already in the hands of the police, were killed and another story of the encounter was concoctedThe statement
The statement also lists details of the 31 people shot down in the encounter including the nine Adivasis, on 24 October by a joint team of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha police.
The villagers had also complained that many among them are missing since the encounter day.
The Maoists has also demanded a judicial enquiry into the incident.