Jharkhand: Six personnel of CRPF’s elite COBRA battalion were injured on Wednesday in a bomb blast after an encounter with the outlawed CPI(Maoist) at Tumbahaka forest in Jharkhand’s naxal-affected West Singhbhum district, a senior police official said here.
However, none of them were injured seriously and they were airlifted to a Ranchi hospital, West Singhbhum superintendent of police Ashutosh Shekhar told PTI. The left wing extremists triggered the blast when personnel of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), its Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (COBRA), Jharkhand Jaguar of the state police and the district armed police were conducting an anti-naxal operation in the forest, he said. The LWEs opened fire at the security forces when they advanced toward them. This prompted the security forces to retaliate and the naxals, forced to retreat triggered the blast. A massive search operation is on to track down the extremists, the SP added.
The West Singhbhum district police is carrying out an intensified operation against LWEs for the past several weeks in naxal-dominated areas which forced a number of them to lay down arms, Shekhar said.
Among those who surrendered to the police were eight extremists considered to be close to top Maoist leader Misir Besra, who carries a bounty of Rupees one crore on his head.
The police have appealed to the youths who have joined the LWEs to take advantage of the government’s surrender and rehabilitation policy and lay down their arms.