Three personnel of the Chhattisgarh police's District Reserve Guard (DRG) were killed in an encounter with Naxalites in Sukma district of the state on Saturday, a senior official said.

The face-off took place around 9 am between Jagargunda and Kunded villages when a team of DRG was out on a search operation, Inspector General of Police (Bastar range) Sundarraj P told PTI.

Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel expressed grief over the incident and said the martyrdom of these police personnel will not go in vain.

Giving details about the incident, the IG said the DRG team had launched an operation from Jagargunda police station limits, located over 400 km away from capital Raipur.

Assistant sub-inspector Ramuram Nag (36), constables Kunjam Joga (33) and Vanjam Bheema (31) were killed in the exchange of fire, he said.

Reinforcement was rushed to the spot and the bodies of the deceased personnel were brought to Jagargunda, he said.

A search operation is still underway in the area, he added.

Police officials claimed that around half a dozen Naxalites were killed in the exchange of fire and their colleagues managed to drag their bodies inside the forest.

On February 20, two police personnel were killed in a Naxalite attack in Rajnandgaon district of the state.

DRG is the state police's frontline anti-Naxal force.