KB Asifabad: On Saturday night, gunshots disturbed the tranquil at Kadamba village that had remained peaceful for the past decade. Villagers woke up to the news of the exchange of fire between police forces and Maoists, and the buzz of the media who rushed to the village.
Surrounded by dense forests, the peripherals of Kadamba used to be a safe haven for the ultras till 2000. Consequently, it earned a dubious name for being the shelter for naxalites. It saw an encounter of Maoist with police in 2004, but since then, the village remained peaceful which also got into the development mode.
“The village remained in the limelight for encounters of extremists until 2000. It is situated on the fringes of the forests, which were considered to be the stronghold of the ultras. However, it was recently converted into a gram panchayat. It has a school and anganwadi centre and is undergoing development in many aspects,” Sarpanch Buram Rajeshwari told Telangana Today.
With the population of 729, villagers of Kadamba were surprised when large contingents of police force descended on the village, besides OB vans and several media vehicles since early morning of Sunday. Locals said some persons of neighbouring villages partied on the premises of a temple of tribal deity, Bheemana, which is located close to the spot where the encounter took place. The shrine sees thronging of aboriginal tribals on weekends. Some devotees sacrifice chickens as a token of gratitude for their well-being and consume liquor at the sacred place.
“With the latest incident, none would dare to visit the holy spot for few days. Even the encounter of the Maoists would remain afresh in the memoirs of the dwellers for quite long. The residents would hesitate to enter the wild for firewood. So do the shepherds for grazing the cattle. It might take some time to restore normalcy,” a resident opined.