Bhubaneswar/Berhampur: It was a two hour-long operation that led to the capture of Sabyasachi Panda in the middle of Thursday night. Berhampur SP Anirudh Singh led a small team comprising an SI and four constables to the house in Dera Street of Kamalabaripeta under Bada Bazar area of Berhampur around 11.30 pm.
The idea was not to raise alarm and keep the Intel inputs limited to a small group. When the team reached Chandra Rao’s house in the crowded locality, Sabyasachi got wind of the danger and tried to flee. He hid himself in a small room and the police team had to approach it through the rooftop.
The police formally asked him to give himself up but he locked himself from inside. The cops broke open the door and arrested the fugitive. But the man they had in their custody looked completely different from what his pictures portrayed him as. Sans the moustache and glasses, Sabyasachi was was clean shaven. When asked to identify himself, he said, “I am Sabyasachi Panda.”
Although he had a gun, Sabyasachi did not use it probably realising that his escape would be futile. The Maoist leader is believed to be in the City to seek medical attention for his eyes, spinal cord and legs.
Berhampur Police is trying to ascertain the role of Rao, who is said to be out of town for last several months over health issues.
Later, Sabyasachi was produced before the Sub- Divisional Judicial Magistrate, Berhampur amidst tight security. The court sent to him judicial custody for a day and granted remand to police for 10 days beginning Friday.