An area commander of the People’s Liberation Front of India (PLFI), a break-away group of Maoists, and his bodyguard were arrested from Odisha-Jharkhand border area on Friday by the Rourkela police and their Simdega counterparts in Jharkhand.
The two identified as area commander Surya Don and bodyguard Churu were nabbed after an exchange of fire for half an hour in Jharkhand territory. A huge cache of arms and ammunition were also seized from them.
Rourkela SP Himanshu Lal accompanied by Additional SP (Operation) Gopal Gupta, Additional SP (Trainee) Sarah Sharma and District Voluntary Force personnel left for the area where they were joined by Simdega SP Prabhat Kumar.
The raid by the joint team was conducted when members of PLFI, who allegedly indulge in extortion, loot and other criminal activities, had assembled for a training camp atop a hill near Girjatoli area under Jaldega police limits in Simdega district in Jharkhand Jaldega. As the police team surrounded the area, the ultras opened fire on the securitymen. The securitymen retaliated and the exchange of fire continued for nearly 45 minutes. At a joint press conference, Lal and Kumar said that the seizures included twelve .315 Bolt Action Rifles, 230 rounds of live ammunition, two hand grenades, three magazines and other camp materials.
PLFI has been active in the region for the last couple of years. The organisation suffered a major setback when 10 members of the gang were arrested recently.