Naxals on Tuesday shot dead a 50-year-old Salwa Judum leader outside his house at Gangapur village in Bijapur district of Chhattisgarh, a senior police officer said.
The incident took place when Chika Mazi was taking a walk outside his house located near a crowded market when some armed ultras fired at him, killing Mazi on the spot, Additional Superintendent of Police BPS Rajbhanu told PTI.
The murder triggered panic among people who ran helter skelter after the gunshots were fired. On receipt of information, police reached the spot and shifted Mazi's body to a hospital.
"Mazi had actively participated in Salwa Judum movement in Naxal stronghold of Bastar and had built a good rapport with the villagers," Rajbhanu said.
He said the rebels were after Salwa Judum leaders after the movement was started in 2006 in Bastar region and were targeting those associated with the now defunct force.
The Supreme Court had last year ruled that creation of Koya commandos and Salwa Judum was in violation of the Constitution and termed as illegal and unconstitutional the appointment and arming of civilians as Special Police Officers in the movement.
Meanwhile, Naxals are observing a "protest week" to stop training given to Army in the Bastar region, and has also announced a bandh in Dandkaranya region on June 7.
The Maoists on Tuesday felled trees and dug up roads as part of their ongoing protests in Dantewada district, police said