Twenty-three security personnel were killed and 33 injured last week in one of the deadliest Maoist ambushes ever in Bastar district of Chhattisgarh.
A CoBRA commando is still missing. When reinforcements reached the encounter site on Sunday, police found injured jawans, who tried to take refuge in abandoned huts, had run into Maoists lying in wait for this. Wounded troops were stabbed, shot and hacked to death. A fierce battle raged in the jungles of Bijapur district for hours on Saturday.
The area is a stronghold of dreaded Maoist commander Madvi Hidma, whose name has cropped up in every major attack in these parts since the massacre of Congress leaders in Jhiram Ghati in June 2013. In Saturday’s ambush, Maoists triggered blasts and then rained bullets and shells on the troops from well-camouflaged positions, inflicting heavy causalities.
One of the survivors of the encounter said that they were attacked by over 400 Maoists from three sides. The ambush lines stretched over 2km near Tekulguda village. Running gunfights broke out near Tekulguda, Jonaguda and Jeeragaon villages as the forces fought back hard to break out of the ambush.