Bhubaneswar, Nov. 23: Thousands of supporters of Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh today took out a march to gather at Padapadala where the last rites of the two tribal men killed in Fridays police firing were conducted.
Carrying red flags and traditional arms, the men and women walked with the bodies amid heavy security. Five companies of personnel drawn from the CRPF, IRB, Cobra, Orissa Special Strike Force and District Armed Police Reserve have been camping there since Saturday.
Supporters from the deceaseds village and neighbouring areas reached Padapadala around 10am. Outfits leader Nachika Linga, who the personnel are on a lookout for, apparently attended the funerals. Police have been conducting raids across the block to nab Linga who led Fridays loot attempt at Narayanpatna police station.
The rites continued for over an hour with both the deceased — military commander Wadeka Singana and Nachika Andrew — being declared martyrs.
Meanwhile, 5km from Narayanpatna, some men under the banner of Bhima Vahini opened fire at security forces which provoked a retaliation. Seven members of the Vahini were arrested afterwards. Police have arrested 19 men in connection with Fridays attack and raids are on to nab more. Arrests include outfit leaders, including the boss of CMASs womens wing, Kumudini Behera, and legal advisor Sahadev Parida.
The personnel have also booked members on charges of murder, arson and rioting. All vehicles entering or leaving Narayanpatna are being checked. The situation is far for being normal, but it is under control, assured Koraput deputy superintendent of police P.K. Sahani. A jeep allegedly belonging to the sangh was also seized by the police.