10 Maoist terrorists killed in Chhattisgarh encounter

Meanwhile, the Congress government of Chhattisgarh has said it will hold talks with the affected stakeholders in the Left-Wing Extremism areas to end the Naxal menace

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Raipur: Ten Maoist terrorists were killed in an encounter with security forces in Chhattisgarh Thursday, police said. The face-off took place in forests under Bhairamgarh police station area of Bijapur district when a joint team of security personnel was out on an anti-Naxal operation, state Director General of Police DM Awasthi told reporters here.

“Police received a specific input about the presence of Maoist Divisional Committee members Rajman Mandavi and Sukhlal with 50-60 cadre in the interiors of Bhairamgarh forest. They were reportedly conducting a training camp for the lower-rung cadre there,” Awasthi said.

The anti-Maoist operation

Acting on the tip-off, around 200 members of the combined squad of the Special Task Force and the District Reserve Guard launched the operation in the night of Wednesday, the DGP said.

“When the patrolling team was in the forest near Borga village, around 450 km from the state capital Raipur, at around 11 am on Thursday, the Naxals opened fire on them that led to the gun-battle,” Awasthi said.

“The intermittent firing lasted for two-and-a-half hours. When the exchange of fire ended, bodies of 10 uniform-clad Naxals were recovered from the spot along with 11 muzzle loading guns and a 315 bore revolver,” the DGP said. A large cache of explosives was also recovered from the spot, he said.

Terming it as a successful intelligence-based operation in the beginning of 2019, Awasthi said such operations will continue. Reinforcement has been rushed to the spot to assist the patrolling team to evacuate the bodies, he said.

“The identity of the killed Naxals and other details will be known once the security forces return,” Awasthi added.

In 2019, this is the biggest anti-Maoist operation in terms of the number of Naxal militants the security forces were able to kill.

This is also the first major anti-Naxal operation since the Congress government came to power in the State. The new regime has said it will hold talks with the affected stakeholders in the Left Wing Extremism areas to end the Maoist menace.