02:50 GMT +316 October 2019
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    Indian police (File)

    Maoist Rebels Gun Down Dozens of Paramilitary Policemen in Central India

    © AFP 2019 / PUNIT PARANJPE
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    Maoist insurgents on Monday killed 26 personnel of the Central Reserve Police Force, a paramilitary force, in an encounter in Sukma in the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh. The attack took place in Bastar region, a stronghold of the Maoists.

    ​New Delhi (Sputnik) — According to eyewitnesses, about 300 Maoist guerrillas cornered the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel who were providing security cover for workers engaged in road construction work in the area. The Maoists, who vastly outnumbered the security forces, fired at them with automatic weapons, killing 26 CRPF personnel.

    Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed deep sorrow about the attack and said the "sacrifice of martyrs will not go in vain."

    Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh also expressed anguish over the incident.

    The attack is one of the worst in recent years in the Bastar area.

    Prime Minister Modi is personally monitoring the situation while Minister of State for Home Affairs is heading for Chhattisgarh state to take stock of the situation. The state Chief Minister Raman Singh held an emergency meeting.

    Bastar district in the state of Chhattisgarh remains the most Maoist-affected area in India. For a long time, Indian forces have been fighting to flush out the Maoist insurgents from the hilly and forested area of Bastar. However, their efforts are met with similar attacks on the security forces every time.

    Maoists control a vast, forested corridor-like tract that runs through the states of Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Maharashtra, West Bengal and Odisha. The rebels almost run a parallel government in the areas under their control.

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    Tags:
    Maoist group, attack, Central Reserve Police Force, Rajnath Singh, Narendra Modi, India
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