Six security personnel were killed and another was critically wounded on Sunday when Maoists detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada district. The deafening blast, on the Bacheli-Cholnar road, targeted a jeep in which seven security personnel were patrolling in a remote area, killing five of them instantly, Inspector General of Police (Bastar) Vivekanand Sinha has reportedly said. A sixth person succumbed to his injuries later. The explosion was so powerful that the jeep was shattered into many parts.
The bomb went off the moment the moving vehicle came over it, leaving a small crater on the road. Troops of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) have rushed to the spot where the attack took place.
DIG (Dantewada Range) Ratan Lal Dangi said the Naxals triggered the blast between Cholnar and Kirandul villages when a joint team of the Chhattisgarh Armed Force and the District Force, in an SUV, was escorting a vehicle carrying material for road construction work.
"Three personnel belonging to the CAF and two of the District Force were killed in the IED blast while two others sustained injuries," the official said, reported PTI.
The ultras also looted the weapons of the police personnel, he said, adding that reinforcement was rushed to the spot soon after the incident.
"We have sounded a high alert in the area and launched a search operation for the Naxalites," Sinha reportedly said, adding that the lone survivor would be taken to Raipur for better treatment,
The blast took place two days before Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh is set to hold a public meeting in Dantewada. Officials said security would be further increased for the Chief Minister's meeting.
The team was surveying a road being built between Kirandul and Cholnar when it was attacked.
Condemning the Dantewada IED blast, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh said, "Naxals are against development and they usually target our soldiers. We will strongly retaliate against such incidents."
Naxals are against development and they usually target our soldiers. We will strongly retaliate against such incidents: Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh on Dantewada IED blast in which 6 jawans lost their lives. pic.twitter.com/MPyBehEZeU— ANI (@ANI) May 20, 2018
Mourning over the loss of 6 jawans' lives, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said, "It is a sad incident where 6 jawans were killed in an IED blast in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada. The naxals targeted the jawans by planting IED rather than fighting them face to face."
It is a sad incident where 6 jawans were killed in an IED blast in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada. The naxals targeted the jawans by planting IED rather than fighting them face to face: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Madhya Pradesh's Satna pic.twitter.com/uT9BDYuhEC— ANI (@ANI) May 20, 2018
With Agency inputs