Raipur: Two Naxals, including a hardcore Jan Militia commander who was carrying a reward of Rs 1 lakh on his head, were on Thursday gunned down and another injured in two separate gun-battles in Chhattisgarh's insurgency-hit Bastar division.
A 22-year-old cadre Kunjam Linga, who was active as Jan Miltia Commander under Jagargunda Area Committee of Maoist was killed in a skirmish with a joint team of security forces in the restive forests of Chintagufa police station area in Sukma district, Sukma Additional Superintendent of Police Santosh Singh told PTI.
Acting on an intelligence input about the presence of a group of 8-10 ultras in Tekalpara area of Chintagufa, a composite team of 206th battalion of CoBRA (Commando Battalion for Resolute Action), CRPF's 150 battalion, District Reserve Group (DRG) and district force had launched a combing exercise in the region, he said.
Sensing the presence of security forces near Tekalpara, a group of armed Naxals opened indiscriminate firing on the forces triggering a gun-battle between both the sides.
On finding Naxals escaping from a spot taking the cover of thick trees along a nullah, another team of police, positioned on the other side of rivulet launched retaliatory action on them, the ASP said.
However, the Naxals managed to flee taking the advantage of dense jungle, he added.
During the search, body of a rebel besides one muzzle loading gun was recovered from the spot, the officer said.
Later, an injured Naxal Sodhi Mang - a Jan Militia member was spotted hiding behind a rock and was arrested, he said.
Police noted that the arrested Jan Miltia Commander Kunjam Linga was a prominent cadre of the region who was carrying a reward of Rs 1 lakh on his head.
According to the officer, he was allegedly involved in several deadly Naxal incidents including Kasalpada ambush in Chintagufa (2014) in which 14 security force personnel were killed and as many others injured.
He was also allegedly involved in the attack on Special Task Force (STF) party last year in Pidmel (Sukma) in which seven personnel were martyred
and 10 others injured.
In another incident, a Naxal was killed in an exchange of fire between a team of District Reserve Group (DRG) and ultras in Bastar district.
The skirmish took place in the forested hill of Korli under Mardum police station limits this morning, Inspector General of Police, Bastar Range SRP Kalluri told PTI.
While a team of DRG led by Sub Inspector PK Shukla was carrying out a search operation in the interiors of Mardum, located around 400 kms away from the state capital Raipur, an encounter broke out with Naxals in the hills of Korli, he said.
After a brief exchange of fire, Naxals fled to the dense forests, he added.
Later the body of a Maoist and one muzzle loading gun rifle were recovered from the spot, the official said.
A total of 26 ultras have so far been killed in separate gun-battles in the Bastar region this year, the IG said.