Seven CRPF personnel were killed and at least nine others were injured in a fierce gun battle with Maoist guerrillas in Latehar district on Monday.
Jharkhand Director General of Police G S Rath said that nine or 10 other personnel from both CRPF and Jharkhand Jaguar were injured in the gun battle with the Maoists near the Katila locality of Amuatikar village of the district.
The CRPF had rushed to the spot after police got information that several Maoist guerrillas, including those from outside the state, had assembled near the place.
The encounter broke out when the Maoists from a hill-top fired on the security personnel.
Units drawn from the 112 and 134 battalions of the Central Reserve Police Force and state police were out to conduct an anti-Naxal operation when the attack took place.
The security forces have consolidated their positions now and some casualties have been inflicted upon the Naxals too, a CRPF official said in New Delhi.
This was the first major encounter this year where security forces suffered casualties in anti-Maoist operations.
It came close on the heels of Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh’s two-day visit to the Maoist-affected districts of Latehar, Garhwa and Palamau from December 31 to inspect the Centrally sponsored rural development works.