Great escape:Police fails to nab Maoist leaders

Bhubaneswar: Maoist leaders escaped after an encounter with security forces during a raid on a camp at Jadu Loisingh forest in Sambalpur district on Wednesday. Maoist leaders Girish Mahato of Jharkhand, Kunu Dehuri of Orissa and others escaped from the camp as the Maoists and security personnel traded fire, Sambalpur Superintendent of Police Nikhil Kanodia said.

The Maoists fired 150 rounds, which was retaliated by 300 rounds and 16 grenades by the security forces but none was killed or injured, Kanodia said.

The encounter broke out when the security forces began a combing operation in the area after a group of about 15 armed Maoists set fire to vehicles and equipment of ARSS, a private construction company at Mundher village.

The security forces recovered a gun, three cartridges and five grenades from the camp. The security forces comprised the Special Operations Group, CRPF and District Voluntary Force. Police sources said the gun seized was snatched from the security guard of the private construction company.