22 Jawans Killed, 31 Injured In Encounter With Maoists On Sukma-Bijapur Border in Chhattisgarh

22 Jawans Killed, 31 Injured In Encounter With Maoists On Sukma-Bijapur Border in Chhattisgarh

Hummingbird News Desk

NEW DELHI, 4 APRIL: At least 22 jawans were killed and 31 were injured in a fierce gunbattle with a platoon of over 300 People’s Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA) of CPI-Maoist in Jonnaguda in Chhattisgarh on Saturday, 3 April. One jawan is still missing. The encounter took place along the Sukhma-Bijapur border, where the security forces launched a major operation with 2000 personnel on Friday, 2 April. It is said to be the biggest Maoist attack this year.

Inside Post Content (After X Paragraph)

The encounter broke after the Maoists ambushed a team of security forces near the Jonaguda village, which falls under Jagargunda police station in Sukma.

Both the state police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) confirmed that 22 bodies were recovered in a massive search operation even as the identity of the security personnel is yet to be confirmed.

Of the 22 personnel, nine belong to the CRPF, while the remaining are from state police’s District Reserve Guard (DRG) and the Special Task Force (STF).

Five of the 22 bodies of the security personnel were recovered on Saturday and the 17 more bodies were found out on Sunday after a massive search operation was launched by a joint team of the CRPF, DRG and the STF from early Sunday. The Cordon and Search Operation (CASO) was still on.

These 17 security personnel, including seven from the CRPF, were missing since the operation concluded after around a nine hour-long gunfight between the Maoists and a joint team of CRPF’s elite CoBRA (Commando Battalion for Resolute Action) unit and Chhattisgarh police’s DRG and STF.

The 20 injured personnel were stated to be out of danger and recuperating in the hospital.

The officials confirmed that at least two bodies of the Maoists were also visible on the spot near the Tekulgudem village under Tarrem police station where the shootout began at noon on Saturday in a deeply forested interior area. There are reports of heavy damage to the Maoists too.

Union Minister Amit Shah has cut short his poll campaign in Assam and is returning to Delhi.

Earlier in the day, Shah spoke to Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel over the phone and had a detailed discussion on the gunfight with the Maoists.

During the conversation, the Chief Minister apprised the Home Minister of the ground reality of the encounter.

The Home Minister said the state and the Centre will jointly win the battle against the Maoists and assured the Chief Minister of all necessary help. He informed the Chief Minister that he had issued instructions to the Director-General of CRPF to visit the site of the incident.

What Happened on Saturday

Intelligence agencies had warned the security forces about Maoists planning to plant IEDs in Bijapur. Based on the intelligence inputs, more than 400 personnel of CRPF, CoBRA unit, DRG, and special task force launched a joint anti-Maoist operation on April 2.

Security forces were on alert after Maoist commander Hidma was spotted in Bijapur. Hidma carries a reward of ₹25 lakhs. A group of 60-80 Maoists were also spotted in Bijapur shortly before the attack.

According to the reports, Hidma led Saturday’s attack with the help of other Maoists groups. When the security team from the Tarrem security base camp was moving through a forest area in Jonaguda, the Maoists attacked.

Reportedly, the forces were scattered and trapped along a two-kilometres long stretch of forest area. The Maoists used lightweight machine guns and even rocket launchers during the encounter.

Heavy gunfire was exchanged, and the encounter lasted for three hours at Tekulagudem under the limits of the Tarrem police station.

Officials also claimed that Maoists also suffered huge losses and were seen taking the bodies of their dead in two tractors. A top officer who was part of the anti-insurgency operation said, “It was a conscious decision. We have been at the stronghold and hideout of Maoists. We went well-prepared inside. It was a fierce battle which was bravely fought by forces.”

Image Courtesy: @twitter

Share and Enjoy !

Below Post Content

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *