A trooper of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) was killed and 10 security persons were injured on Sunday in a landmine blast triggered by Maoists in a forested area of Gaya district.
Police headquarters sources said six Maoists were also killed in the gunbattle that followed, but their bodies are yet to be recovered.
Deputy inspector general (CRPF) Umesh Kumar said the incident took place after a unit of the CRPF's CoBRA (Combat Battalion for Resolute Action), Special Task Force and the Gaya police launched a combing operation in the forests after being tipped off about the gathering of a large number of ultras for meetings to chalk out a strategy for a bandh on Monday.
The shutdown is being called in protest against the custodial death of Maoist leader Madan Yadav in Aurangabad district of south-central Bihar a few days ago.
Chief minister Nitish Kumar has ordered a probe into the custodial death.
The Maoists opened fire and triggered several landmine blasts to stop the advancing security forces, who retaliated. This was followed by the gunfire, which started at 6 am. Five vehicles including two motorcycles, an anti-landmine vehicle, a Bolero and a Sumo were badly damaged in the incident.
More than 25 persons have been detained in this connection for interrogation.