The variety of Maoists killed in an encounter with safety forces over the weekend might be between 12 and 20, based on residence ministry and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) officers conscious of the developments, with intelligence inputs suggesting that the extremists used grenade launchers within the ambush that claimed the lives of not less than 22 safety personnel.

While the physique of 1 Maoist cadre was recovered in a search operation after one of many deadliest assaults lately, the casualty determine of the ultras was anticipated to be a lot increased, one of many folks cited above mentioned.

Also Read | The 22 soldiers who were killed in Chhattisgarh Maoists attack

The info on the Maoist deaths was backed by surveillance inputs captured by a Heron drone which indicated that two tractor-trolleys had been used to ferry the lifeless extremists again into deep forests, the individual added.

“Our estimate is that between 12 and 20 Maoist cadres have been killed or else they would have not asked for two tractor-trolleys. They tried to encircle CoBRA, black panthers and DRG-STF troops but were not successful. We will retaliate on our own terms,” mentioned a senior CRPF official who requested to not be named.

The Maoists regrouped and tried to encompass one other space on Sunday morning after the preliminary assault, however the try was repelled, and safety forces reached their base safely, the CRPF official mentioned.

The casualty numbers within the ambush on each side had been excessive because the encounter came about within the nerve centre of the Maoist operations, the Bijapur-Sukma space within the Bastar area, one other official mentioned.

The official added that the Maoists used barrel grenade launchers within the assault, which resulted in a number of deaths, many because of splinter accidents. The safety forces additionally retaliated with grenade launchers hooked up to computerized weapons, the official mentioned.

Wireless intercepts indicated that the Maoists managed to trace the motion of the safety forces, however the Heron drone additionally picked up actions of a number of Maoist groups, a fourth individual mentioned a evaluate of the incident indicated.

Around 11.10am on Saturday, a firefight broke out between the forces and the Maoists, with grenade launchers being utilized by each side, the individual added. The staff of the safety forces, about 460 of them, later moved in direction of an open space to facilitate the evacuation of the injured. The troops retrieved the physique of a girl from the Maoist group together with an INSAS rifle in an operation later.

Also Read | After Maoist attack in Chhattisgarh’s Sukma, Amit Shah vows befitting reply

Union residence minister Amit Shah on Sunday held a top-level assembly with senior officers in New Delhi on the incident. Home secretary Ajay Bhalla, intelligence bureau director Arvind Kumar and senior CRPF officers had been current on the assembly.

While CRPF director-general Kuldiep Singh was in Raipur, the house ministry’s adviser on Maoist actions, Ok Vijay Kumar, was in Jagdalpur to evaluate the scenario.

Shah, who’s scheduled to chair one other assembly on the incident on Monday, mentioned a befitting response will likely be given to these chargeable for the Maoist assault.

“Our securitymen have lost their lives, we will not tolerate this bloodshed and a befitting reply will be given at an appropriate time,” Shah mentioned. He added that each side suffered losses and the precise casualty figures had been being ascertained.

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