RAIPUR: Chhattisgarh state vice-president of Samajwadi Party was hacked to death by naxals in Marimalla village of restive Bijapur district.
Santosh Punem, 39, who was also engaged as a contractor, was kidnapped by rebels late on Tuesday eveninf from the construction site where he had gone to inspect some road-related work.
“Punem, a resident of Bijapur, was inspecting the road construction work on Tuesday late evening when the naxalites brutally killed him. But we came to know about it on Wednesday morning by the villagers who spotted his body. A team of security personnel left for the Marimalla village to bring back his body. The vehicles engaged by him for the contract works were also set ablaze by the rebels,” Bijapur district superintendent of police Divyang Patel told the Express.
Fearing booby trap, took over 10 hours for the security forces to cautiously reach the village to get the body.
“The Maoists tried to create some hurdles for the forces that delayed the troopers to access the body. The forces were much vigilant as they marched ahead,” the district police chief said.
The police suspected of ambush trap or attack by the naxalites planted for the forces who might arrive for the body.
Bijapur is among the seven worst Maoist-affected districts in the conflict zone of Bastar, south Chhattisgarh.
In another incident, the security forces arrested three Maoists in Sukma district. According to the police, they were said to be involved in various attacks including the 2017 Burkapal ambush that killed 25 CRPF jawan.
Punem last year contested the state Assembly polls from Bijapur seat on the SP's ticket.