Thiruvananthapuram: Police are looking for a group of Maoists who have allegedly taken shelter in a forested area in Kannur and Wayanad districts near the Kerala-Karnataka border.
Locals in Chittari colony near the border have been quoted as saying that the Maoists, including a woman and three men, gave them Rs 2,500 recently to buy food for them.
But the Maoists disappeared into the jungles after sighting a team of excise personnel.
Home Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan told a news agency that Kerala Police is conducting the search with help from Karnataka Police.
"Yes, the movement of the Maoists has been identified. We are strengthening the combing operations, and this will be intensified in the coming days," he said.
Apparently, pamphlets have been distributed in the area in the name of the Western Ghats Special Zonal Committee of the Communist Party of India-Maoist.
The pamphlet, issued in the name of a Jogi, accused `Western imperialism` of intruding into the Ghats, thereby driving away locals who have thus far protected the forests and its wealth.
Three days of the police hunt has not led to any breakthrough.