Raipur: A Maoist was today shot dead in a fierce gun battle with security forces in Sukma district of the state on the eve of Naxal’s “Martyr’s week”, police said.
“The skirmish took place in forests under Polampalli police station limits (in south Bastar) between a joint team of security forces and ultras,” superintendent of police, Sukma, Indira Kalyan Elesela told PTI.
On the eve of ‘Martyrs Week’ to be observed by Maoists from tomorrow, the alert was issued to all police stations and camps to maintain extra vigil to prevent and counter any attack or sabotage activity, he said.
“After receiving specific inputs about the presence of a huge group of cadres near Polampalli under the leadership of Maoist commanders Aapu Pada and Bhima, a composite squad of Special Task Force (STF) and District Reserve Group (DRG) were pressed into action immediately,” the SP said.
When security forces were cordoning off interior jungles, a group of around 60 insurgents opened indiscriminate fire on them, triggering a heavy gunfight between the two sides, the SP said.
“During the search conducted following the encounter, the body of a naxal, a country made gun (with double barrel), and pamphlets were recovered from the spot,” he said. The operation is still going on in the area and further details are awaited, he added.
Meanwhile, security has been heightened across the naxal-affected Bastar division which comprises districts of Dantewada, Bijapur, Bastar, Narayanpur, Kondagaon, Sukma and Kanker in view of the ‘Martyrdom Week’.
According to a senior police official, naxal pamphlets and posters asking their cadres and people to observe “martyrdom week” were recovered from some places in Bijapur, Sukma and Kanker districts. Police have increased patrolling in the border areas neighbouring Odisha, Telangana and Maharashtra, the official added.