Srikakulam: A fortune-teller and a priest were arrested by the Srikakulam police on Sunday for allegedly conspiring to kill AP transport minister Kinjarapu Atchannaidu.
The police also recovered a lorry tyre into which explosives had been fixed, which was being used as a “stopper” at a crossroads.
They have been identified as Murapaka Kalidas Sharma of Parvatipuram in Vizianagaram district and Josyula Sankara Rao from Rayagada district of Odisha.
The duo had made the prediction through a print media journalist over the phone on September 28 in 2017.
Addressing the media here, superintendent of police Dr C.M. Trivikram Varma said that eight slurry explosives and eight electronic detonators were recovered from a lorry tyre that was set up at the Peddabammidi junction on the NH-16 within the limits of Kotabommali police station.
The police officer said that the accused worked as priests and fortune-tellers. They pretended to see risks to the lives of VIPs in their horoscopes. The plan did not succeed too well so they modified it.
They called up a print reporter, pretending to be Maoists from the Chandranna group, and told him there was a risk to the life of the minister.
The district SP deployed five police teams, two of which were sent to Rayagada and Paralakhemundi in Odisha. Bomb disposal squads and road opening parties were deployed for combing operations in and around Nimmada and Kotabommali.
In the combing operation on Saturday, eight slurry explosives and eight electronic detonators were recovered from the lorry tyre.
Sankara Rao was arrested in Meliaputti in AP and Kalidas from his ashram at Parvatipuram in Vizianagaram on Sunday. Police said they had procured 13 slurry explosives and 13 electronic detonators but used eight.
Tekkali circle inspector (CI) K. Bhavani Prasad, Srikakulam special branch CI, G. Srinivasa Rao, Kotabommali and Tekkali SIs A. Laxman and G. Rajesh were part of the operation....