Two Maoists have been killed in an encounter with the police in Hazaribag's Batuka forests, hours before the 24-hour Jharkhand bandh called by the naxalites began on Tuesday.
"While one body of a Maoist was found, the other one was taken away by the Maoists after the encounter late on Monday night," Hazaribag Superintendent of Police Praveen Kumar Singh told newsmen in Hazaribag.
The self-styled Maoist zonal commander, Krishna Yadav, was leading his cadres in the exchange of gunfire with the securitymen during raids in the forests, ahead of the bandh, he added.
The police found one self-loading rifle, one .303 rifle, some ammunition and Rs 1.71 lakh in cash from the encounter spot under Keradari police station, Singh said.
The bandh, called by the Maoists against a host of issues, has not not affected normal life in the state.