BHOPAL: Two wanted Maoists, including a woman cadre of the CPI(Maoists) Tanda Dalam, were gunned down in an encounter with police and special anti-Naxal force in Balaghat district of Madhya Pradesh on Tuesday-Wednesday intervening night.
The slain Maoists identified as Mangesh and Nande, both carrying rewards of Rs 8 lakh each declared by MP and Chhattisgarh government were gunned down by the Hawk Force (special anti-Naxal force of MP police) and Balaghat district police following an encounter in the dense forests in Lanji area at around 1 am.
“There was a brief encounter between the special force-district police team and the 10-12 strong group of CPI (Maoists) Tanda Dalam operating in the dense forests around the tri-junction of MP, Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra. While two of the armed Maoists were killed in the exchange of fire, luckily none of our men sustained injuries or casualties. Remaining members of the armed rebels managed to escape due to heavy rain and darkness in the dense Pujaritola jungles under Lanji police station area,” Balaghat district police superintendent Abhishek Tiwari told The New Indian Express on Wednesday.
The search operation post encounter continued till 5 am, after which the cops made the details of encounter public.
An SLR rifle and a 315 bore rifle and multiple live rounds of bullets have been recovered near the bodies of the slain Maoists (who hailed from Chhattisgarh’s Bastar) and investigations are underway to ascertain their involvement in past Maoists violence incidents in MP and Chhattisgarh, said Tiwari.
The encounter happened in Pujaritola jungles which are proximate to the dense forest-replete route of the new red corridor being planned by the CPI (Maoists) between Kavardha district of Chhattisgarh and Dindori district of MP.
Presently, only two districts of MP, including Balaghat and Mandla are Maoists affected districts, but two platoons, Vistar Platoon-2 and Vistar Platoon-3 of the CPI(Maoists) Kavardha-Balaghat (KB Division) are working on the plans to establish a left-wing extremist (LWE) corridor from Kavardha to Dindori via Balaghat and Mandla districts.
The slain Maoists were part of the Tanda Dalam, which is considered a feeder group to the two Vistar platoons.