BHUBANESWAR: The three women Maoists who were killed in an exchange of fire between the Red rebels and security forces at Ampani Ghat on the border of Kalahandi and Nabarangpur districts on Saturday, belonged to Mainpur division of the Maoist outfit. Security personnel are yet to ascertain their identity. The encounter had taken place at Sahajkhol Reserve Forest area.
Informing this to mediapersons, DIG S Shyni said two .303 rifles, a 9 mm pistol, a 12 bore gun, 65 rounds of live ammunition, one tiffin bomb, 15 detonators, 15 metres of electric wires and Maoist literature were seized from the spot by security forces, comprising the Special Operation Group and the District Voluntary Force (DVF).
She said the Mainpur division comprises Maoist cadres from Gariabandh district of Chhattisgarh. The Maoist division has been active in Kalahandi, Nabarangpur districts of Odisha, bordering Chhattisgarh and Gariabandh district of the neighbouring state. She said as Maoists operating in Kalahandi are not able to recruit local cadres or create base for the outfit, they are roping in cadres from Chhattisgarh. Shyni added that there is an attempt by the banned outfit to establish a corridor through Kalahandi.
In 2015, there were six combing operations in which Maoist camps were destroyed
Till April this year seven combing operations have taken place in which Maoist camps were destroyed
In the last one year, two women Maoists were killed at Chura mountain range while, another was killed in Gundi Dangar during exchange of fire
According to reports, the strategic location of reserve forest is helping the Maoists elude the security forces.
They had set up camp at the place and held meetings in villages nearby instigating people against the Government. They were also making efforts to lure youths into the outfit. The DIG said that security personnel have intensified combing and steps are being taken to increase CRPF deployment in the area.