Saturday, December 23, 2006

Three Maoist trainers killed in Maharashtra

Three Maoist trainers killed in Maharashtra
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Saturday, December 23, 2006

Notching up a major success in their anti-Maoist operations, police in Maharashtra killed three hardcore guerrillas conducting an undercover training camp along the state's border with Chhattisgarh.

Among the three Maoists, known as Naxalites, killed in the gunfight Friday in the Wangetura forest in this tribal district was a deputy commandant of the Maoists' Platoon Dalam, Shamru Samru alias Chaitu, and two of his trusted lieutenants.

In a swift operation, three teams of the 360 Commands Force of the Gadchiroli police, joined by a team each of Chhattisgarh police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), struck at the ongoing training camp forcing the outlaws to dismantle it, Superintendent of Police (SP) Shishir Jain told IANS.

The Maoists would have had many more casualties but for a claymore landmine blast triggered by their sentries guarding the camp to enable them to flee, said Jain, Gadchiroli district SP.

Four police constables suffered minor injuries in the retaliatory fire by the fleeing Maoists.

The police, who used two-inch mortar bombs and grenades in the assault, found half a dozen abandoned tents, three boxes of explosives and a generator besides a TV set at the camp site.

The concerted police strike was based on a tip-off about the camp obtained from the State Intelligence Department and confirmed by the Intelligence Bureau, Jain said.

Kanker (Chhattisgarh) district SP Pradip Gupta coordinated the action with his Maharashtra counterpart under an overall supervision of the Special Inspector General of Police (Anti-Naxal Operations) Maharashtra, Pankaj Gupta.

Friday's encounter was the 19th this year in which 20 Maoists were killed as well as three police officials as against 20 casualties suffered by the police last year, Jain said.


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