Koraput: Claiming to have snapped ties with the Maoist-backed Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh (CMAS), a group of 134 tribals, including at least 18 wanted rebels, have deserted the outfit in Odisha`s Koraput district, police said on Monday.
The tribals belonging to Dumsil village, which is considered as an epicentre of the Sangh activities, appeared at Narayanpatna police station on Saturday and conveyed their decision to sever ties with the Maoist-backed Sangh.
"The tribals vowed to lead a normal life. They have realised that being in the CMAS got them nothing. We are exploring legal possibilities to help the tribals, who are in our wanted list," said SP (Koraput) Awinash Kumar.
With more and more people quitting the Maoist-backed outfit in Narayanpatna area, police are now hopeful of arresting CMAS president Nachika Linga, who has been on the run for the last four years.
"We have information that more tribals of Dumsil are planning to desert the Sangh. It will leave Linga with little option. Either he has to surrender before the police or face arrest", a senior police officer said.
So far, 944 tribals from different villages have deserted the outfit, police said.