Woman Maoist killed in gun battle with police

Malkangiri: A woman naxalite was shot dead in a fierce gun battle with security forces at Chandameta forest on Odisha-Chhatisgarh border during an operation which led to the rescue of some villagers held hostage by the ultras.

The armed exchange took place between a joint team of security personnel and the ultras in Chandameta village forest under Darbha police station limits last night.

Acting on a specific input about some people from Kandanar village being held hostage by Naxals inside the forest, the joint squad of state police’s District Reserve Group (DRG) and CRPF was dispatched to carry out searches late last evening.

While they were cordoning off the forest area near Chandameta, which is located around 400km away from the state capital, the exchange took place between the security forces and a group of armed rebels.

Engaged by the security forces and finding them zeroing in on them, the ultras fled to the dense forest taking advantage of the cover of the night, he said.

Thereafter, during a search at the spot, the body of a woman Naxal was found. A .315 bore and some .12 bore guns were also recovered during the operation.

The slain Naxal has been identified as Piso, a native of Jheeram village.

Blood stains at the spot indicated that some ultras might have been injured in the gun battle, sources said adding that a search in the area is underway.