Nine Indian Security Personnel Killed in Blast Allegedly Triggered by Insurgents

The site of the IED blast in Sukma

Aside from the nine soldiers who died in the latest attack, six were injured, four of whom are reported to be critical.

The incident is said to have taken place between Kistaram and Palodi in Chhattisgarh's most deadly district, a place known to be a Naxal strong hold.

The attack comes almost 11 months after 25 CRPF jawans were killed by a gang of nearly 300 Naxals at a construction site in Sukma. "As per information received 9 CRPF personnel attained martyrdom and 3 are injured", he added.

Today's attack comes nearly 11 days after security personnel killed 10 alleged Naxalites in the state. "The CRPF and security forces had been trying to dominate the area".

A senior CRPF official in Raipur said the patrol squad had launched the search-cum-area domination operation from Kistaram towards Palodi, located around 500km from here, in view of the visit of Sukma Superintendent of Police Abhishek Meena in Palodi on Tuesday.

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Reports pouring in from Chhattisgarh said a gunfight broke out in the area during morning between specially trained COBRA force and Naxals and the vehicle that was targeted was a reinforcement rushing to the area.

The Congress also described the attack on the CRPF today in Chhattisgarh's Sukma as a mindless and ruthless strike on security forces by the ultras and expressed solidarity with the families of those killed, while hoping that the injured would soon recover. "I pray for speedy recovery of the injured jawans".

In April a year ago, 25 CRPF jawans lost their lives in a Maoist attack.

The attack was in retaliation for an encounter between the CRPF and Naxalites earlier in the day at around 8 AM. In Chattisgarh alone, in the past one year, there have been 272 Maoist-related incidents, with 58 Maoists killed and an equal number of security forces martyred.

Mr Awasthi said although the Intelligence Bureau had sounded an alert in the Bastar region, there was no security lapse on the part of the road opening party of the CRPF.

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