Raipur: In yet another daring attack by the Naxals, the banned Maoist ultras on Monday killed at least 14 CRPF personnel and several others injured in south Chhattisgarh’s Sukma district. PM Narendra Modi has also condemned the Naxal attack in Sukma and condoled the killing of CRPF personnel in the ambush..
“Till now 14 jawans have been killed and 12 have been injured,” Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh was quoted as saying by media.
According to reports, a large number of heavily armed Naxal rebels laid a trap in Chintagufa area of Sukma district where an anti-Naxal operation was on since last ten days. The Naxals reportedly used villagers as human shield against the CRPF fire that restricted the force to retaliate.
The attack on the CRPF jawans took place when they were trying to recover the dead bodies and were also engaged in a fierce gunfight with the Naxals that started this morning.
The retaliatory firing by the CRPF troopers also led to some casualties on the Naxal side but it is yet to be confirmed.
“Thirteen CRPF men have died in a Maoist ambush near Kasalpara village of Sukma district today.The deceased personnel include two officials of the CPRF posted in Sukma,” RKVij, the Additional Director General (ADG), Naxal operations, Chhattisgarh said.
Kasalpara village is the same place where the CRPF had claimed to have killed 15 alleged Maoists on November 21 in an encounter.
An Mi-17 chopper which was flown in to rescue injured CRPF Jawans, had also come under fire from the Maoists, report said.
Meanwhile, the CRPF has launched massive search and rescue operations in Chintaguha area of Sukma after the Naxal ambush.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has strongly condemned the Naxal attack in the Sukma district. Singh will also reportedly leave for Chhattisgarh tomorrow morning to take stock of the situation there.
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan also condemned the Naxal attack on the CRPF troopers.
Former state chief minister Ajit Jogi also said, “This is very saddening, I offer my tributes to the martyred.”
Former home secretary RK Singh said that the fight against Naxals will go until they are wiped off, which will happen soon.
Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and her son and party vice president Rahul Gandhi also strongly condemned the attack and called for a thorough probe into the incident.
Today’s incident also mocks Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh’s recent remark in which he promised to rid the state of the Naxal menace very soon.
“The day is not far when Chhattisgarh will become Naxal-free, thanks to the joint efforts of state government and Centre in wiping out the Maoist menace,” Chief Minister Raman Singh said on Sunday.
Singh conveyed this to a delegation of National Security Advisory Board (NSAB) which called on him here.
The delegation headed by NSAB chairman and ex-Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran met Singh at his official residence and discussed different aspects of Naxalism.
They also discussed the security arrangements and measures being taken for the socio-economic betterment of people in the insurgency-hit region, at the meeting.
“The chief minister informed the board about various welfare schemes of the state government in LWE (Left Wing Extremism) areas, besides the joint efforts of Central armed forces and state police in counter-insurgency operation,” an official statement said.
The board advises Centre on national security after analysing various issues and visits various states in this regard.
Singh told the delegation the Naxal problem has been eradicated from Surguja region (north Chhattisgarh) and remains confined only to certain areas of Bastar and Rajnandgaon.
“The day is not far when the state and Centre will together wipe out the Maoist menace and succeed in making a Naxal-free Chhattisgarh,” the statement quoted Singh as saying.
“Central security forces, state police jawans and officers are fighting the menace of Naxalism with better coordination at every front. During past few months we have achieved some major success in this direction,” the chief minister said referring to a significant number of Naxals laying down their arms and arrest of many cadres.
Singh also said thrust should be given to execution of effective strategies to ensure security for people along with efforts to bring a positive change in their life style.