BHUBANESWAR: Three Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel were ambushed during an exchange of fire with the Naxals in Patdhara Reserve Forest in Nuapada district on Tuesday.
The martyred jawans are assistant-sub inspectors Shivpal of Haryana and Sishupal Singh of Uttar Pradesh and constable Dharmendra Kumar Singh of Bihar. The Odisha government has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 20 lakh each to the next of kin of the jawans who laid down their lives in the operation.
Sources said the security personnel were engaged in road opening party (ROP) duties between Bhainsadani and Patdhara company operating bases of the CRPF when the red ultras attacked them at about 2:30 pm.
"Nuapada SP Pratyush Diwakar and senior officers of CRPF have reached the spot. Combing operation has been intensified in the area and more teams of CRPF and Special Operation Group (SOG) have been sent to the spot," said a senior officer of Odisha Police Headquarters.
DGP Sunil Kumar Bansal said that the operation will continue in the area to trace the Maoists and asserted that the sacrifice of the martyrs will not go in vain. Though Nuapada is still under the purview of the Security Related Expenditure (SRE) scheme, the district has not witnessed any major Naxal violence in the last 10 years.
In May 2011, at least 10 police personnel including an Addl SP rank officer of Chhattisgarh were killed in a landmine explosion followed by firing by Maoists close to the border with Odisha. The incident had taken place inside Sunabeda Reserve Forest, which runs adjacent to Odisha's Nuapada district and Chhattisgarh’s Gariaband district.