Ahead of general elections, security personnel recovered a huge cache of arms and explosives after busting a Maoist camp at a forested area in Odisha bordering Chhatisgarh, police said on Sunday.
The security forces recovered 3 single barrel muzzle loading (SBML) guns, one 8 mm pistol, 70 detonators, eight landmines, five-kilogram gun power and 7 bundles of wire used to explode improvised explosive devices (IED).
Security personnel launched a joint combing operation of local police, state’s Special Operations Group and BSF on Thursday following an intelligence report that around 50 rebels active in Chhatisgarh and Odisha were camping in the forest under Raighar police station area of Nabarangpur district, about 550 km southwest of Bhubaneswar.
On Saturday, when they spotted the camp, an exchange of fire ensued between the rebel and security men. Not able to match the police firepower, the Maoist escaped from the spot. There was no casualty from either side.
“They have been targeting security forces in Chhatisgarh. We suspect they had the intention to do the same in Odisha and create disturbance before the general elections,” south-west inspector general of police Yeswant Jethwa said.
On March 11, Maoists ambushed a team of security men in Chhatisgarh’s Sukma district leaving 11 CRPF personnel, four state policemen a civilian dead.