Seven Chhattisgarh Policemen killed in IED blast triggered by Maoists

Seven state police jawans were killed on Sunday morning when Maoists allegedly blew up their vehicle with an improvised explosive device (IED) in Dantewada district, the police said. The Maoists also looted six automatic rifles of the police personnel after the blast and fled into the jungles.

The injured policeman has been airlifted to Raipur and his condition is said to be critical, the police said.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh tweeted on Sunday evening, “Deeply anguished to know about the death of Chhattisgarh police personnel in an IED blast in Dantewada today. My thoughts are with the bereaved families of the martyred police personnel.”

“The deafening blast near Cholnar targeted a jeep in which seven security personnel were patrolling a remote area,” said Vivekanand Sinha, Inspector General of Police.

Road construction work is currently being taken up between Kirandul and Palnar villages in Dantewada, PTI reported. The Maoists also took away the weapons of the police personnel, officials said.Among those who died in the attack were Head Constable Ramkumar Yadav, Constable Tikeshwar Dhruv and Assistant Constable Shalik Ram Sinha from the District Force. From the CAF’s 16th battalion, Head Constable Vikram Yadav and constables Rajesh Kumar Singh and Ravinath Patel got martyred. CAF Constable Arjun Rajbhar, who was airlifted to Raipur, died during treatment.

Chief Minister Raman Singh condemned the attack calling it “cowardly”. “Our police personnel have sacrificed their lives while guarding a road construction site. Their sacrifice will always be remembered,” he said.

“This proves that Naxalites do not want villagers and tribal people of this district to have access to even basic facilities such as roads. Incidents like these cannot dampen the courage and determination of our police force and officials, employees and labourers associated with road construction,” Singh added.