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Kidari Sarveswara Rao and former lawmaker Shivari Soma are shot dead by Maoists.

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Kidari Sarveswara Rao, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) lawmaker from Araku Valley and former lawmaker Shivari Soma were shot dead by Maoists on 23 September in Visakhapatnam district when the duo were returning from an event in Livitiput, 15 km from Araku Valley.

As per information gathered, the two leaders were shot dead from point-blank range.

The attack is assumed to be planed after the recent bauxite mining contract in the region. The two leaders had gone to negotiate with the Maoists but were shot from point-blank range by Maoists. It is reported that a troop of about 40-50 Maoists took part in the attack. The two leaders were stopped by the group of Maoists which even include women while returning from an event. They had conversations with the armed troop of Maoists on the controversial issue of mining in the area and were later killed by them.
Police sources shared that the group of Maoists used people as human shields to escape and even took away the weapons of the personal security officers of the lawmaker.
As per information received, both the leaders were facing threats from Maoists in past and even Mr Rao had faced the protest by tribals for allegedly obtaining mining lease in the name of his brother-in-law. The tribals had claimed that extraction of black stones was damaging their homes.

Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh Nara Chandrababu Naidu expressed shock and grief for the loss. He recalled the contribution of Kidari and Siveri in the development of agency areas and expressed condolences to their family members

Naidu said “Such attacks and murders are a blot on humanity. All believers in democracy should condemn this attack. Kidari’s and Siveri’s efforts for development of tribals and agency areas are unique,”

Visakhapatnam Range Deputy Inspector General of Police CH Srikanth shared  “A group of Maoists came along with the villagers and blocked the MLA’s car. As the personal security officers of the legislator and the ex-legislator got down, they snatched two rifles from them and shot Sarveswara Rao and Soma dead.”

The Police officials suspect the involvement of Ramakrishna, secretary of  Maoists Andhra-Odisha Border Committee behind the attack and killing of the two leaders.

Araku Valley also known as the operational base of Maoist central committee member Ramakrishna is a tribal region that shares a border with Odisha.

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