Security forces have gunned down eight Naxals during an encounter on Monday between the soldiers of Chhattisgarh Police's District Reserve Guards (DRG) and 206 and 208 CoBRA units of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) in Saklar village of Sukma district in the state. At least two DRG troopers have also been martyred in the encounter.
Officials added that one Maoist has been seriously injured in the encounter and a "Bharmar" gun has also been recovered. According to Sukma SP Abhishek Meena the process to evacuate the bodies of the dead soldiers and Maoists have started even as the encounter is still going on.
All the Maoists belonged to the People's Liberation Guerrilla Army of the Communist Party of India (Maoist). The joint operation was launched in the core area of Maoists stronghold and the encounter has been a major success.
Security personnel had killed two Naxals in Bijapur district of the state on Sunday. One police personnel was injured during the gunbattle. The encounter on Sunday had started when teams of DRG and Special Task Force (STF) were carrying out a combing operation as part of the anti-Naxal drive in Gangaloor and Madded areas of the state.
Superintendent of Police Mohit Garg told PTI that a combined squad of DRG and STF was cordoning off the jungles between Nilamadgu and Korinjed in Madded area, 450 km from Raipur, when it came under fire from the rebels.
The exchange of fire lasted for 40 minutes after which the Naxals fled, he said. "A DRG jawan sustained a bullet injury in the neck. He is being shifted to hospital," Garg said.
The body of a Naxal was recovered along with one .303 rifle and one muzzle-loading gun from the spot, he said. Elsewhere, an exchange of fire broke out between a DRG team and Naxals around 2.30 pm in a forest near Borje village in Gangaloor area, the SP said.
A reinforcement party was rushed to the spot which too came under fire around 4 pm, leading to a fierce gun battle, he said.
Later, the body of a Naxal along with two rifles and a 'tiffin' bomb was recovered from the spot. The identity of the killed Naxals was yet to be ascertained, the police officer said.
(With inputs from PTI)