leaders Muppalla Lakshmana Rao, aliasGanapati
, and Mallojula Venugopal, alias Sonu, are reportedly planning to surrender to join the mainstream.
Both are believed to be suffering from ill health for long. While the police are tight-lipped on the rumours, civil liberties organisations allege that cops are playing a psychological game by floating news about their proposed surrender.
While Ganapati served as the general secretary of CPI-Maoist party, Sonu is a politburo and central committee member. According to sources, Telangana police are working secretly to get both Maoists to surrender. “The secret operation (for their reported surrender) has been going on for the past five-six months,” a senior officer involved in anti-Maoist operations told TOI.
Police have reportedly assured the middlemen, who have links with both Ganapati and Sonu, that no case would be filed against the duo and they would be provided the best possible medical care.
Ganapati, 74, a former school teacher from Birpur in Karimnagar district of undivided AP, is said to be suffering from various health ailments for the last seven years. He had stepped down from leadership role due to his health issues and gave the baton to Namballa Kesava Rao, alias Basava Raj, of Srikakulam in 2018.
Hailing from the upper caste Velama community, he carries a reward of nearly Rs 3 crore on his head, currently the highest in the country.
Ganapati has eluded arrest for over four decades since he was arrested for violence and arson at Jagtial in Karimnagar in 1977.
The other leader, Venugopal is the Dandakaranya area chief of the banned outfit. He is the brother of Mallojula Koteswara Rao, alias Kishenji.
Venugopal carries around a bounty of Rs 1 crore on his head. The 60-year-old is believed to be behind many attacks on security forces, including the Dantewada attack, in which 73 CRPF jawans were killed