BHUBANESWAR: Maoists finally released Malkangiri collector Ravella Vineel Krishna on Thursday. The collector, abducted on February 16, was freed at Doliamba, a village bordering the Chitrakonda-Balimela forests, 750 km from here.
Malkangiri District Rural Development Agency (DRDA) project director Balwant Singh received Krishna. According to initial reports, around 15 Maoists dropped the collector at Doliamba village where a meeting of local tribal people was held. One of the local Maoists explained that the collector was abducted for the cause of tribals who were being 'exploited' and 'oppressed' by the state administration.
The reports said the collector was held on a well-guarded hilltop, eight km from Doliamba. Armed militia was deployed all-around the hill to repulse any possible attempt of attack by security forces.
Suspense and drama preceded the collector's release as Maoists demanded immediate release of their ideologue Ganti Prasad and a host of other leaders. They asked interlocutors G Hargopal, R Someswar Rao and Dandapani Mohanty to come to Malkangiri for further discussions. Mohanty on Wednesday had rejected the fresh demands of the Maoists saying "they are not acceptable at this stage."