Nagpur: At least seven naxalites were killed and several others injured in an encounter with police at Bhatpar jungle in Gadchiroli district bordering Chhattisgarh early this morning, police said.
Acting on a tip-off that around 100-armed ultras were holding a secret meeting in Bhatpar jungle, a Naxal hotbed, three separate companies of anti-naxal squad C-60 reached there in the morning, cordoned off the area and challenged them, according to reports reaching the divisional headquarters here.
The Maoists immediately opened indiscriminate firing and the gun battle continued for over two hours.
Bharat Thakur, the sub-divisional police officer (SDPO) of Aheri, who led the operation, said police party found four bodies of the ultras at the spot while "the naxalites succeeded in taking away three bodies during the battle."
"We have already intensified coming operation in the area immediately after the encounter and the toll may rise," he added.
The ultras killed in the encounter were yet to be identified.
Three police personnel sustained minor injuries in the gun battle.
The Gadchiroli police had killed six Maoists, including a divisional committee member and a dalam commander, in January this year near Govindgaon in the district.