Singh, 42, a part-time reporter for a local Hindi daily Prabhat
Khabhar, was shot dead in Khunti district while he and two friends were visiting
a construction site on the Pasrabeda-Khatanga route, according to news reports.
Local citizens told news media that a group of 10 to 12 Maoists had gunned him
down and that Singh’s friends were able to escape.
A letter found in Singh’s pocket said he had been killed because he
was carrying out government work without the PLFI’s permission. Singh also ran
a construction business in the area. The letter, which was allegedly signed by members
of the People’s Liberation Front of India (PLFI), a breakaway Maoist faction, said:
“No one can work in the area without approval of the PLFI,” according to
Hindu reported that Singh was allegedly killed in a dispute over
collection of a levy on a road-building contract.
News reports said Singh had written about activities of the rebels
for the past 16 years. M Taleem Vannan, the superintendent of police of Khunti
district, said police were investigating the murder.