Berhampur, Dec 2 (LocalWire) Road communication in Maoist-infested areas of southern Odisha districts was hit as CPI (Maoist) cadres began observing the People’s Liberation Guerilla Army (PLGA) Week on Sunday.
The PLGA Week is observed every December 2 to 8 to mark the establishment anniversary of the outfit.
Though private owners operated their buses as usual, Odisha State Road Transport Corporation (OSRTC) refrained from operation in all southern districts.
“We have decided not to operate any bus in the Maoist-infested districts from December 2-8,” said OSRTC’s Berhampur divisional manager in-charge Dhiren Kumar Das.
As many as 47 buses of different OSRTC units in Berhampur, Bhanjanagar, Phulbani, Rayagada, Jyepore, Malakanagiri, Nabarangpur, Vizagnagaram in Andhra Pradesh, Cuttack and Bhubanswar remained off the roads, sources said
In Kandhamal, all buses of the corporation, known as Biju Gaddi, operating in interior pockets have been suspended for the next four days, said the corporation’s Phulbani unit head Jugala Kishore Pradhan.
Out of 16 buses, only eight buses of the corporation are plying in the district.
Private operators, however, decided to operate their buses as usual.
“We are keeping an eye on the situation. If it turns worse, we will withdraw our service temporarily. Till then, the buses will ply as usual,” said a private bus owner PK Pati.
Meanwhile, security has been tightened in Kandhamal and Gajapati districts.
“We have alerted the forces. The combing operation has been intensified in the district, while we are checking all vehicles at all strategic locations,” said Kandhamal Superintendent of Police (SP) Prateek Singh.
He, however, ruled out deployment of extra security forces. ‘We are managing with the existing forces,” he said.
Similarly, Gajapati SP AK Das said the combing operation is being continued in Maoist-infested areas like Adava and Mohana.
No untoward incident has so far been reported from any of the districts, said the police.
The outlawed outfit generally concentrates on new recruitment during the observance of the PLGA Week every year.
They also pay homage to Maoist cadres, killed in police encounter, during this observance.