Naxal leader Rama Krishna not in custody: Andhra Police tells HC

New Delhi: Top naxalite leader Rama Krishna is not in the custody of Andhra Pradesh Police, the Hyderabad High Court was, on Thursday, informed by the police.

Following submission from the state police, the court asked the petitioner, who is Krishna alias RK’s wife, to produce before it any material with regard to him and gave her two weeks.

A division bench of justices CV Nagarjuna Reddy and MSK Jaiswal had earlier directed the Andhra Pradesh government to file counter affidavit informing the court whether RK was in police custody or not, by Thursday while hearing a habeas corpus plea filed last week by RK’s wife Kandula Sirisha.

In the wake of an exchange of fire on Andhra-Odisha border on October 24 in which 24 Maoists were killed, doubts were expressed by RK’s wife and relatives and party comrades that he might be in police custody.

In the habeas corpus petition, RK s wife Sirisha sought directions to the state government to produce the outlaw before the court and to record his statement for appropriate action.

Responding to the petition, Visakhapatnam Rural District Superintendent of Police Rahul Dev Sharma filed an affidavit before the court that the husband is not in the custody of police.

“In fact the records reveal that the husband of the petitioner is a member of the Central Committee of CPI (ML), which is a banned Organisation and there are around 40 cases registered against RK at various police stations of Andhra Pradesh.

“The police could not apprehend the husband of the petitioner till date in connection with those pending criminal cases,” the SP submitted.

The senior police officer further submitted that the incident of exchange of fire has occurred in the territory of Odisha state and requested the court to dismiss the petition.

Referring to the affidavit of AP Police that RK is not in their custody, the court told the petitioner, “In absence of material, if you (petitioner) have any material produce it,” after which the petitioner sought time to file reply.

The court then posted the matter after two weeks to enable the petitioner to file material, if any with regard to RK.

AP Police had on Wednesday informed the High Court that joint teams of AP and Odisha police had to “fire in self-defence”, which resulted in the death of 24 Maoists in Malkangiri district of Odisha area on October 24.