In its ongoing exercise to clip the wings of a strong urban network of Maoists, Chhattisgarh Police on Tuesday claimed to have arrested a Naxal conduit who was allegedly involved in mobilising villagers against the Rowghat rail line project in Kanker district.
Badri Gavde, said to be a Congress worker and staying and operating from Antagarh block of Kanker, was apprehended yesterday, Superintendent of Police (Intelligence), Rajnesh Singh told a news agency.
"Gavde confessed that had been doing liaisons with some leaders of Congress for getting the party ticket to contest Vidhan Sabha election," Singh said.
On the direction of his senior cadres, Gavde, a self- styled social worker, had founded an organisation 'Rowghat Bachao Jila Sangharsh Samiti' to mobilise villagers against the proposed Dalli-Rajhara Rowghat Rail Line meant to haul iron ore from the proposed Rowghat mines, the SP said.
He had also arranged secret meetings of NGO workers with the top Maoists during which they chalked out strategies to oppose Rowghat project, he said.
Earlier, Gavde's name had surfaced in the statement of Virendra Kurre, the main accused arrested in connection with the last year's arson and violence in JK Laxmi Cement Plant, he said.
"At that time, Kurre had revealed that Gavde, a native of Tadoki village in Kanker district, was associated with the protest against development projects," he said.
He also admitted to playing a key role in fixing Maoists' meeting with prominent people from Delhi in the forests of Abhjmad.
With this fresh arrest, so far nine Naxal conduits, all residents of Kanker region who were allegedly part of the channel providing logistic and financial support to Maoists, have been held, he said.
Initially, three Naxal couriers were nabbed from Abhanpur when they were carrying ammunitions from Raipur to Kanker for the cadres last week. Next day, their questioning led to the arrest of two more Naxal couriers.
Later, two prominent businessmen and one other person were held in this connection, he said.