Two commandos of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) were killed and six other CRPF personnel, including an officer were injured in an encounter with the Naxals in Chhattisgarh’s Bijapur district on Monday, officials said.
A Naxal was also killed in the gun-battle, they said.
The gunfight started around 10.30 am in a forest in Irapalli village under Pamed police station limits, located over 400km from Raipur, when security forces were out on a counter-insurgency operation, a senior CRPF official said.
The patrolling team of 204th battalion of CoBRA (Commando Battalion for Resolute Action) had launched the operation on Sunday evening from Tippapuram camp in forests along the border of Sukma-Bijapur districts, he said.
When security personnel were advancing through the Irapalli forest, they came under fire from Naxals, triggering a fierce gun-battle between the two sides, he said.
“Two constables – Vikas Kumar and Purnand Sahu – were killed in the gunfight, while six others, including an officer, sustained injuries”, he said.
While Mr Kumar was a native of Banda district in Uttar Pradesh, Mr Sahu hailed from Rajnandgaon district of Chhattisgarh.
The injured CRPF personnel were identified as deputy commandant Prashant Kumar, head constable Ajit Singh and constables Giriwar Oraon, P Pawan Kumar, Bibha Basu Mahata and Pawar Pandurang, he said.
The exchange of fire lasted for about two hours after which the Naxals escaped into the dense forest, he said.
According to the official, a Naxal was also killed in the encounter and a weapon was recovered from the spot.
The injured personnel were being airlifted to the state capital Raipur for treatment, he said.