COIMBATORE: A man suspected to be Deepak alias Chandu, an arms trainer of the People's Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA), was detained at a remote tribal village near Anaikatti in Coimbatore district on Saturday by a Tamil Nadu Special Task Force (STF) team.
The STF has been conducting a combing operation in the West Zone to look into any Maoist infiltration following the recent Kerala police firing in Attapadi forest.
STF officials said that the Maoist, Deepak, from Chhattisgarh, works on the frontlines of the banned PLGA to sett up a base of Bhavani Dalam (squad) in tri-junction jungle, spread over Tamil Nadu- Kerala- Karnataka forest boundaries. However, the man they detained denied he was an arms trainer. He claimed his name was Sinic, and that he hailed from Madhya Pradesh, officials said.
The team was between Chembukarai tribal village and the foothills of Perumalmudi hills, at the Kerala-Tamil Nadu border, on Saturday morning when they received a tip that three suspects persons had camped at Moola Gangal, a mid-forest of the range.
Based on the tip, the officials said they reached the location. However, two of the suspects escaped while the third was caught as he fell into a gorge and sustained multiple injuries while attempting to flee. One SBBL gun was seized from him, officials said.
"He was caught inside the jungle in Thadagam police limit in Coimbatore district. The mishap caused an injury in his left leg," said a senior official from STF.
The team brought him out of the forest by foot, a journey that took five hours. He was taken to Mangarai village and then to Government Primary Health centre at Veerapandi village. He was brought to Coimbatore Medical College Hospital at around 6.30 pm and admitted for treatment. While he was being taken to the hospital, he allegedly raised a slogan for praising the movement. He is likely to be arrested on Sunday, officials said.
"As per our investigation, his name is Deepak alias Chandru from Chhattisgarh state. However, he claims he is Sinic from Madhya Pradesh. He is a Hindi-speaking person and knows a bit of Malayalam, Tamil and few other languages. We are continuing to investigate his identity," ADGP Sunil Kumar said. Police is also investigating which organisation he belongs to and if he had participated in any recent camps or was present during the firing in the Kerala forests.