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10 killed as Maoists ambush police party

Friday August 19, 2011 11:20:29 PM, IANS

Raipur: Nine policemen and a civilian were killed as Maoist rebels Friday ambushed a police party in Chhattisgarh, India's worst left-wing insurgency-affected state, police said.

"There is a massive attack on dozens of policemen in the jungles of Bijapur district. We are struggling to take reinforcements to the attack site since the area is heavily mined and densely forested," Bijapur police chief, R.N. Das, told IANS over the phone.

The attack site, some 500 km south of Raipur, is in the restive Bastar region.

The attack took place in the evening when dozens of policemen were returning from a jungle terrain on foot and in a tractor. The vehicle was blown to smithereens in a blast.

A police officer based in Bijapur's Bhopalpatnam area where the attack took place, said that the Maoists trapped policemen in "a well-planned and well-executed ambush".

"The policemen were boxed-in from all sides by heavily armed militants," the officer told IANS over phone.

Some of the policemen were carrying their rations in a tractor while a few of them who were unarmed and in plain clothes were returning after being granted leave, he said.

"We are trying to get the exact situation as reinforcement is finding hard to reach to the site," Additional Director General of Police (Maoist Operations) Ramnivas told reporters in Raipur.

"There were two encounters and our force handled the first one effectively but in the second battle they got ambushed," he said.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Raman Singh held an emergency meet here with the state police chief Anil Navaney and Chief Secretary P. Joy Oommen to discuss how to rush support to a few policemen reportedly critically injured in the ambush and who were lying in a pools of blood at the attack site.



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