Bhubaneswar, Feb 21 (IANS) A 24-hour statewide bandh called by Maoists hit normal life in parts of Orissa Monday, police said.
The rebels, who abducted Malkangiri district collector R. Vineel Krishna and junior engineer Pabitra Mohan Majhi Feb 16, have called for the shutdown to exert pressure on the government to fulfill their demands, including halting of anti-Maoist operations by security forces, release of all political prisoners, the scrapping of accords with MNCs and compensation for the families of Maoist sympathisers killed in police custody.
Government buses stayed off roads in many areas of Koraput, Rayagada, Malkangiri, Gajapati and Kandhamal districts – which are considered a Maoist strong hold – a senior state police officer told IANS.
Railway services were also affected in the districts of Rayagada and Koraput, he said.
Shops remained shut and private vehicles also went off the roads in interior areas of these districts, he added.
The Maoists, through posters and leaflets, listed their demands for the safe release of the hostages and warned a delay by the government could have dire consequences.