KOLLAM: In the wake of exchange of fire between suspected Maoists and Kerala Police commandos in Mananthavady taluk in Wayanad on Sunday, the district police stepped up vigil and raised alarm in the border areas. As the district has a large forest area, the police have chalked out plans which will leave no stone unturned. According to the police and forest officials, Kollam is a main area as it has dense forests in various border areas.
The district itself has two forest divisions- Thenmala and Punalur. The Thenmala division comprises Kulathupuzha, Aryankavu, Edamon teak plantations and reserve forests and Punalur division comprises Anchal and Pathanapuram ranges.
Police officers in the border areas said that constant vigil and rapport with adivasis were essential to combat the Maoists. District Special Branch DySP V Vijayakumaran Nair told Express that till now, there was no Maoist threat in the district. He said that for combating the same, the Special Branch with the help of the rural police had chalked out some precautionary measures.
For this, a meeting was called on Monday by Kollam Rural SP S Surendran.
“During the meeting, many people said that they had seen strangers in their locality. This would be taken seriously. According to initial findings, they are not Maoists. But we are not taking it lightly,” he said.
According to Thenmala SI Rajesh, the strangers might be workers in rubber estates or tea plantations. But he said that an inquiry would be conducted to find out the same.