A woman Naxalite was killed in an encounter with the Maoists in Balaghat, 431 km south east of Bhopal on Saturday, claimed the police.
Superintendent of Police (SP), Balaghat district, Sachin Atulkar said that a woman Naxalite was killed in the exchange of fire with ultra-leftists in the forests at Bamni.
"We are trying to ascertain her identity", he said. Police said that she was wearing the Naxalite outfit and was part of the dozen-odd Naxals present then.
The movement of a suspected Maoist sympathiser was being tracked when he was taking grains and other goods for the Naxals in forests.
The Hawk Force team that was following him, reached the Naxal den.
Police claim that they surrounded the Naxalites and asked the latter to surrender but the Maoists fired instead and in the ensuing exchange of fire, a Naxalite woman was killed.
There was sporadic firing from both sides as Naxals allegedly wanted to take the body along, but later they escaped. The woman's body was recovered after the encounter ended, though she is yet to be identified. The encounter began in the morning at around 9:30 am and ended in the evening.
Though officials said that her identity is yet to be ascertained, they suspected that she hails from Chhattisgarh. Balaghat, which is located on the border of Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh, is a Naxal-infested district. Though there was a comparative decline in Naxalite activity for a long time, of late, there has been a rise in Maoist movement here.