Rajnandgaon: Naxals have set ablaze four vehicles, including two engaged in a road construction work, in Madanwada area of Rajnandgaon district and exchanged fire with police on Friday who are on their trail.
"A group of 15-20 armed Naxals torched four vehicles parked at an under-construction bridge between Baseli and Sahpal villages under Sitagaon police station limits late last evening," Rajnandgaon Superintendent of Police Sundarraj P said today.
He said the vehicles included a truck, a poclain machine, a SUV and a motorcycle.
The Maoists also threatened the contractor and workers to stop the construction work.
In the wake of the torching incident, a joint team of security forces launched a search operation in Madanwada and Kohka region, located around 200 kms from the state capital, to trace the ultras during which a gun-battle ensued today.
However, no harm was reported on both the sides in the skirmish.
"While carrying out the combing operation following the incident today, a composite squad of Special Task Force (STF), ITBP, and district force got a tip-off about the presence of a group of cadres between Kaneli and Belgaon village under Kohka police station limits.
"After they raided the spot, a gunfight erupted between both the sides. However, ultras soon fled the spot after finding that the security forces were zeroing in on them," he added.
Police found a wireless set, a radio, a camera flash, besides a huge cache of Maoist-related materials from the spot, he said, adding that the combing operation was still underway in the region.