Maharashtra: 13 Maoists, including 7 women, killed in jungle gun-battle with police

Maharashtra: 13 Maoists, including 7 women, killed in jungle gun-battle with police

Gadchiroli (Maharashtra), May 21, 2021

Notching a significant victory, the Maharashtra Police on Friday gunned down 13 Maoists, including seven women, in a fierce gun-battle in the deep forests near Etapally, officials said here.

The 90-minute encounter between the Maoists and the crack force of C-60 commandos, which started around 6 am today in the Paydi-Kotmi jungles, may have resulted in at least 4-5 more of the rebels getting injured but they escaped in the jungle.

Home Minister Dilip Walse-Patil visited the Gadchiroli Police headquarters and felicitated the top police officers including Sanjay Saxena, Sandip Patil, Ankit Goyal, Manish Kalvaniya, Sameer Shaikh and Somay Munde, Bhausaheb Dhole, all Indian Police Service (IPS) officers, among others.

An official spokesperson for the Anti-Naxal Operations (ANO) said that, early today, following a tip-off that a group of Maoists were planning to come to the local villages for their regular extortion purposes, a team of C-60 commandos was deployed to carry out combing operation in the forests.

At that time, a gang of around 60-70 heavily armed Maoists opened indiscriminate firing in the direction of the police teams.

The police first made appeals to the rebels to lay down arms and surrender, but they failed to comply and the commandos responded with fire.

After about 90 minutes, the Maoists escaped in the thick forests ending the dawn encounter in which the police extracted a heavy toll on the rebels' side.

A subsequent search of the vicinity revealed the bodies of 13 Maoists, including 7 women and six men, and they belonged to the dreaded groups active locally.

The police also recovered weapons like AK-47s, SLRs, Carbines, 303 revolvers, 12-bore rifles, and a huge stock of ammunition and explosives, besides articles of daily use from what appeared to be a temporary camp area.

The district police and surrounding areas have put on alert in other talukas for any retaliatory attacks by the Maoists.

This is the second important success in the anti-Maoist crusade of the Maharashtra Police in the past seven months after an October 2020 encounter in Gyarapatti forests saw five Maoists, including three women, shot dead.

IANS

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