MANGALORE July 6: A group of people, suspected to be naxalites, barged into the house of Keshav Hegde at Hulgarbailu in the Sringeri police station limits in Chikmagalur district late on Wednesday. The 12-member group took away a single-barrelled breach-loading gun and Rs. 54,000 in cash from the house. The group also reportedly threatened the family against informing police about the incident.
Ashit Mohan Prasad, Inspector-General of Police (Western Range), said here on Thursday that the personnel from the Sringeri police station learnt of the incident on Thursday morning. The Anti-Naxal Force and the local police combed the region, but met with no success. Police had stepped up vigil in the area, he said.
Vipul Kumar, Superintendent of Police, Chikmagalur, said over phone that the group descended on Mr. Hegdes house around 9.30 p.m. and knocked on the door for half an hour. Mr. Hedge did not open the door suspecting that they were naxalites. It was only when the group threatened to break down the door that Mr. Hegde let them in, he said.
The group, which had snapped the telephone wires before entering the house, is said to have talked to Mr. Hegde about their way of life before making good their escape with the gun and money. They also scattered pamphlets in and around the house. The place where the incident occurred is almost an hours drive from Sringeri and located in difficult terrain, he said.
Director-General and Inspector-General of Police K. R. Srinivasan reviewed the ongoing operations against naxalites, at Karkala on Thursday. Mr. Kumar, who was busy with the Hulgarbailu incident, could not attend the meeting.