Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Malkangiri, Mar 28:
Two BSF jawans were seriously injured in a landmine blast triggered by the Maoists near MV-126 village under Kalimela police station limits in Malkangiri district this morning.
According to reports, the Maoists had blocked the road at MV-126 village in the early morning hours by putting up a poster on the middle of the road asking people to boycott the ensuing elections and the leaders of all political parties.
Panic gripped the area as the locals stopped moving along the road while the vehicles stopped plying apprehending trouble.
Following information, about 50-60 BSF jawans from 43 Battalion with their camps at MV-79 police station were on the way along the forest road to remove the blockade when the left wing ultras triggered a landmine blast between Telerai and MV-126 in which two jawans were seriously injured.
However, the Central forces retaliated. In the crossfire that continued for nearly an hour, the Maoists managed to escape from the area.
The two seriously injured BSF jawans— Amar Chhatri from Darjeeling in West Bengal, who sustained serious injuries on his hands, legs and face and Srikant Singh from Siwan district of Bihar, who lost his left leg in the blast—were first rushed to the Kalimela Primary Health Centre (PHC) and later to the district headquarters hospital.
But as their condition deteriorated, the duo was airlifted to Vishakhapatnam for treatment.
It may be mentioned that the Maoists have asked the people to boycott the ensuing elections in April by putting up posters and banners in several areas in the undivided Koraput district.
Keeping this in view, security has been tightened in Malkangiri, Koraput, Rayagada and Nabarangpur districts with regular combing operations to foil the attempts of the red rebels to disrupt the poll process.