BHUBANESWAR: A 43-years-old journalist was allegedly killed in an improvised explosive device(IED) explosion triggered by Maoists in Kalahandi’s Madanpur Rampur block, police said on Saturday. The journalist was identified as Rohit Biswal, a local scribe working with Odia daily, Dharitri.
Kalahandi Superintendent of Police, confirming the incident, said IEDs were placed targeting the police.
As per preliminary information, Biswal had visited the spot to take visuals of posters put up by Maoists asking the villagers in the region to boycott the upcoming Odisha rural polls, after receiving a tip-off about the same. The posters were put up near Karlakunta bridge in Mohangiri area which passes through a forest region and is far from human habitation.
According to sources in the police department, they had inputs on the posters at 9 am on Saturday morning. A police team, including a CRPF team, was mobilised to inspect the spot.
“Whenever such posters come up, there is a possibility that IEDs have been planted targeting the police. But that does not happen every time. Our team was alerted but before we reached the spot, the unfortunate incident happened. The area is still being sanitised by our bomb squad. We can recover the body from the spot only after ascertaining that there are no more IEDs,” Kalahandi SP Dr Vivek told to sources.
Kalahandi’s Madanpur Rampur block, which shares its border with Kandhamal and comprises dense jungles, has heavy presence of Maoists. The district is one amongst the six districts in the state with the presence of Left Wing Extremism.