Malaria has killed one policeman and affected at least 20 deployed to fight Maoist extremists in Orissa's Sambalpur district, a policeman said Saturday.
The state government has deployed over a hundred men of the Orissa State Armed Police in three villages of Sambalpur district where Maoists had killed five people last month.
"There is no basic healthcare in the villages where we are posted. We are not even getting clean water," said Raju Barali, who is suffering from malaria himself. "When we are fighting disease, how can we fight Maoists?"
"We are sending a medical team to the area to examine their health," a senior district health official said.
Leftist extremists dominate large hilly and forested areas at the Orissa-Andhra Pradesh. They have expanded their base to western Orissa's Sambalpur, about 317 km from here, in the past two years.