Maoists had a diabolical plan to loot arms and ammunition-laden trucks of BSF, but it was lack of coordination among the cadres that resulted in the ambush on Tuesday morning.
This came to fore during preliminary investigation into the incident by the security agencies. The Maoists had blasted a landmine planted under a culvert in Sunki valley on NH-26 which blew up a BSF vehicle killing four jawans on the spot. Two others, who were critically injured, were rushed to Visakhapatnam.
Investigation revealed that Maoists had planted three land mines in different culverts in Sunki valley and even prepared trenches in Sakaria hill. They had also stored food packets in the area with a plan for prolonged fight against the security forces.
However, the cadres at the grassroots hastily blew up one culvert on the fateful day suspecting that the BSF vehicles were carrying arms and ammunitions. They could not link the other two land mines during the attack.
Sources said over 100 Maoists belonging to Koraput-Srikakulam dalam from Narayanpatna, Bandhugan, Ichapuram, Salur and Pottangi were involved in the ambush.
Eighteen BSF jawans were on their way to Visakhapatnam in three vehicles when the incident took place. While the first vehicle crossed the mined culvert, the second was fired upon by Maoists, who were in large number. As the third vehicle with six jawans was negotiating the stretch, the Maoists detonated the landmine. Additional cadres were even stationed to carry arms and ammunitions, but their plan failed.
Due to the fierce encounter that ensued, Maoists had to flee leaving behind the food packets and other essential commodities that they had stored in the trenches. Eleven BSF jawans, who escaped the blast, held the fort for more than an hour.
On Wednesday, armed forces recovered 20 kgs of aluminium nitrate kept hidden in an agricultural field, a few metres from the attack spot, during a combing operation.
On Thursday, BSF DG Subhas Joshi visited Koraput and met 11 BSF jawans. Police have detained 11 locals from Sunki area for interrogation.