A day after Maoists killed around 30 policemen in ambush attacks in Chhattisgarh, a group of rebels fired on Monday night at a security forces camp in West Bengal's Lalgarh area, where the government has launched a massive operation to push out the leftwing rebels.
The Maoists fired at a security force camp in Dharampur in West Midnapore district, on the 26th day of the operation launched by the government against the radicals. The securitymen returned the fire, forcing the rebels to flee.
Inspector General of state police (Western Range) Kuldip Singh said the ultras fired 20 rounds. But unofficial sources said the Maoists fired at least 100 rounds.
There was no report of any casualties among the forces. Dharampur is part of the Binpur I Block, of which Lalgarh is the headquarters.
Earlier in the day, students, teachers and parents in two schools of the area held demonstrations demanding that security forces withdraw their camps from their schools.
The head master of Gohmidanga High School said the security forces should withdraw their camp within three days. Students at the Binpur High School boycotted classes demanding the forces vacate their school.
After the students and the parents of the school launched an agitation and even kept some securitymen locked inside the school, the government agreed to shift the camps from within the schools in a month.
The huge security operation in areas in and around this enclave was launched by the state government on June 18, after the rebels had virtually made it a "free zone".
Maoists are active in areas under 21 police stations in the state's three western districts - West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia.