Naxals in Chhattisgarh claim to shoot down police drones sent for ‘airstrikes’, force refute charge

Maoists in Chhattisgarh’s Bijapur claimed they have shot down two drones allegedly sent for ‘airstrikes’.

Maoists in Bijapur released a statement on Thursday claiming they have shot down two drones allegedly belonging to security forces. Naxal outfit Dandkaranya special zonal committee of Maoists released pictures of a quadcopter and an audio message challenging police.

In the video message, Maoist leaders were heard saying that Bastar IG can send his men to verify their claim at the bombing site.

Naxals had on Wednesday alleged that the Central and state security forces in a joint operation dropped bombs near two villages in Bijapur district of Chhattisgarh, a claim described as baseless by the police.

Dandkaranya special zonal committee in a statement claimed the “airstrike” took place on April 19. The Maoists further alleged the drone attack targeted them and shared some images of the purported attack in support of their claim, news agency PTI reported.

While Maoists said they shot down two drones, police dismissed the allegation as baseless.

Inspector-General of Police Bastar Range Sundarraj P said, “The allegation levelled by Maoists regarding airstrike/drone attack is totally baseless and it’s an outcome of fear and confusion in the rank of Maoist cadres.”

“Security forces in Bastar operate within the legal framework with a single objective of protecting life and property of the native population of the region,” police said.

“It is the CPI Maoist cadres who have taken away lives of thousands of innocent civilians by using IED’s and explosive materials. They haven’t even spared children, women and animals during their desperate attempts to harm the security forces by using IEDs,” police said in a statement.

“Even today in Narayanpur, one ITBP officer is seriously injured and one cow was killed in an IED explosion triggered by the Maoists,” police said.

“The Naxals doesn’t have any moral authority to blame the security forces to level such baseless allegation against the security forces. It is high time that they stop unleashing cruelty against innocent tribals of Bastar and let the native population lead a peaceful life,” police said.

Tensions in the region have been since five jawans were killed and 20 injured in a fierce encounter between security forces and Naxals in the Bijapur district of Chhattisgarh earlier in April.

Source: India Today

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