Twelve Maoists gunned down in Chhattisgarh & MP, toll may rise

2 weeks ago 12

RAIPUR: At least 10 Maoist insurgents, including a woman, were gunned down in Bijapur in one of the biggest security ops in Bastar division of Chhattisgarh on Tuesday. Additionally, two

Maoists

, carrying a combined reward of Rs 43 lakh, were killed in a night shootout in MP's Balaghat district,

police

confirmed Tuesday.
The seizure of a light machine-gun, AK-47 rifles and several under-barrel grenade launchers in Bijapur suggests the presence of a high-ranking Maoist leader among those killed.

According to police, the toll may rise as several other insurgents were wounded.
Since the Vishnu Deo Sai-led BJP govt took office last Dec, a total of 47 Maoists have been killed in the state.

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22 Maoists killed in C'garh since LS polls announcement
Police sources attributed the success of the operation to accurate and timely technical intelligence. Authorities were alerted Monday evening about the movement of around 100 heavily armed Maoists in the Gangaloor region, a known insurgency hotspot near the Telangana border. Responding to the intelligence, a joint force comprising CoBRA commandos, CRPF, District Reserve Guards, and Special Task Force mobilised to intercept them.

The shootout ensued around 6am Tuesday when

security forces

engaged the Maoists in the forests between Lendra and Korcholi villages in Gangaloor. The

gunfight

resulted in the recovery of the bodies of four Maoists initially, followed by six more and additional weaponry and Maoist material.
The operation is ongoing, with further details expected as it progresses, Bastar range IG P Sundarraj told TOI. "The slain Maoists will be identified after the bodies are brought to base," he said. They are believed to be from PLGA Company No 2. With heightened security operations ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, 22 Maoists have been eliminated in the fortnight since the announcement of election dates. Deputy CM Vijay Sharma expressed concern over the recovery of automatic weapons, highlighting the need for further investigation into their source.
In MP, a gunfight broke out around 9pm Monday in Kerajhari forest of Balaghat district, situated near the border with Chhattisgarh, and continued for over two hours. Upon conducting a search of the area early Tuesday, police discovered the bodies of 38-year-old Maoist divisional committee member Sajanti, also known as Kranti, and area committee member Raghu, alias Sher Singh, aged 54. Both were wanted in multiple cases of murder, kidnapping, and arson, with bounties announced by police in three states - MP, Maharashtra, and Chhattisgarh.
(Inputs from Bhopal, Jabalpur)