Maoists bandh evokes mixed response in state

Bhubaneswar: The two-day country-wide shut-down called by Maoists evoked mixed response on the first day today in Odisha amid disruption of vehicular movement and closure of shops in some places.

Road traffic was affected in several areas of naxal-infested districts like Malkangiri, Rayagada, Gajapati, Sundargarh and Kandhamal during the bandh called by red rebels in protest against the killing of their top leader Kishenji.

Shops and busienss establishments remained closed in Kalimela, Motu, Padia and Chitrakonda areas of Malkangiri district, police said.

Security was tightened in all Maoist-infested districts as a precautionary measure, while force deployment was strengthened near jails, armouries and government buildings, a senior police official said.

Patrolling was intensified in vulnerable areas and borders with neighbouring states like Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal were sealed amid thorough checking of vehicles, he said.

In Sundergarh district, shops and markets were shut in areas bordering Jharkhand and remote places.

No untoward incident was reported from any place of the state and the bandh has remained peaceful so far, police said.