Odisha top cop singles out Maoist attack as major challenge

Bhubaneswar: Identifying Maoist activities in the state as the single major challenge for Odisha Police, DGP Prakash Mishra on Friday asked the senior officers to act tough against the offenders.

“We will intensify anti-Maoist operation and work till end of the menace,” DGP Mishra told reporters after inaugurating the 57th Senior Police Officers’ conference at Cuttack.

Mishra said that efforts are on to nab the Maoist leader and head of the Odisha Maobadi Party (OMP) Sabyasachi Panda. “OMP leader Panda is no more a threat for the police. It is now confined to only six-seven members,” the DGP said adding that efforts are on to nab Panda.

Stating that Panda, responsible for the abduction of two Italian tourists from Ganjam-Kandhamal border in 2012, the DGP said, “Panda has not responded to the appeal made by the police. Therefore, there is effort to nab him.”

To a query, the DGP said police would continue to hold possession of the areas released from Maoist hold.

Referring to the rising incidence of crime against women, he said the state police would act tough against those involved in such acts.

“Steps would be taken to provide adequate security and protection to the women who are subjected to harassment and physical torture,” the DGP added.

On the rise in accidents and robbery on National Highways, the DGP said steps are being taken to strengthen highway policing.

The two-day meet, being attended by over 110 senior officials including all district Superintendents of Police, range IGs and DIGs, commandants of all armed police battalions, officers of Home Guards and Fire Services, State Vigilance and other police establishments, would deliberate on a host of issues.

The issues to be taken up included the Maoist menace, crimes against women, community policing, human rights violation, protection of weaker sections, highway and coastal policing.

The concluding session of the conference is scheduled be held here.