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Snigdhendu Bhattacharya, Hindustan Times
Kolkata, September 19, 2013
It was not an encounter that killed top Maoist leader Koteswar Rao, alias Kishenji. Betrayed by moles within the ranks, he was caught, tortured and murdered in cold blood – or so said Maoist leader Ganapathy in his letter addressed to comrades. The 17-page letter adds to the claims of the state’s human rights organisations.

“It was a fake encounter. Our beloved leader comrade Kishenji was caught by the police, brutally tortured and killed by the enemy with the help of coverts,” Ganapathy wrote.

The crisis in the Maoist ranks practically began with Kishenji’s death in West Midnapore’s Burishole forest in November 2011. The politburo and central military commission member was the rallying point for Maoists after the death of Cherukuri Rajkumar, alias Azad, in July 2010.

Jail security upped

Security was tightened in 55 jails of Bihar following an alert by the Union home ministry that Maoists would target them to free their imprisoned cadres and leaders. The alert came after the security forces recovered the 17-page letter of Ganapathy addressed to senior Maoists. Over 1,000 Maoists are lodged in jails of Patna, Gaya and other places.