Maoists gun down key Salwa Judum leader

Raghu Singh, 55, was leading the Salwa Judum movement in Bijapur district's sprawling Bhopalpatnam area. He was shot dead by Maoists in the area. He had a few weeks ago sought police protection, saying he feared for his life.

Maoists trapped him, pumped bullets into his body and then slit his throat. Singh died on the spot, according to Avinash Mohanty, superintendent of police Bijapur.
Mohanty denied knowledge of Singh seeking police cover. "I don't have an idea whether he had sent application seeking police cover in the wake of threat to his life," he said. 

Singh is a close aide of Mahendra Karma, the man credited for launch of the Salwa Judum movement in June 2005. His killing has sparked fear in Bhopalpatnam locality, some 520 km south of state capital Raipur.

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