Twenty kilos of high-intensity explosives and blasting devices were recovered from Korchi, 65 km north of Gadchiroli district headquarters on Sunday morning.
The recovery comes close on the heels of a second MI 17 Army helicopter joining combing operation for the Naxalite group that gunned down 17 commandos last week.
Additional Superintendent of Police (Gadchiroli) Dr Manoj Sharma told Hindustan Times on Sunday that the explosives and other blasting material were found during a road clearance (and search) operation.
The explosives were kept in a cavity on the road to disrupt communication in the interiors.
Sharma said the Naxalites were resorting to “every possible trick” to hamper progress of search parties in jungles by creating obstacles.
“The jungles have been mined while attempts are being made to disrupt road communication,” Sharma said.
Meanwhile, the second Indian Army MI 17 helicopter was pressed into operation on Sunday, Sharma said. Two more will be made available this week.
Sharma said that a contingent of about 2,100 Central Reserve Police Force personnel had arrived in Gadchiroli.
Eight companies of CRPF and 27 companies of the Border Security Force have already been pressed into election duty early this month. The total number of para-military personnel in the district is now over 5,500.
In a joint strategy chalked out by the Maharashtra police along with the Chhattisgarh government, the combing operation has begun from both sides in order to first round up and then flush out the Naxalites.
Sharma also said that during Thursday’s encounter around 35 to 40 Naxalites were suspected to have been killed though none of the bodies had been found.
“As we are moving ahead in the area, we are collecting information from villages. From the information we have so far, it is clear that at least 35 to 40 Naxalites were seriously injured and their treatment was sought in those villages,” said Sharma.