- NL Sena
Eighteen members of the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist) were killed in Malkangiri district of Odisha, very close to the state’s border with the neighbouring Andhra Pradesh.
The encounter is reported to have been carried out in the early hours of Monday in a joint operation between the Andhra Pradesh and Odisha police. The operation resulted in the seizure of four AK 47 rifles, three self loading rifles, and other arms.
According to a story, a top Odisha Maoist commander was neutralised, but official confirmation is still pending. The Hindu reports that about 100 Maoists had gathered in the remote areas of Malkangiri district for a meeting. The police were tipped off about the meeting, and responded.
An unnamed DSP rank officer was seriously injured in the encounter.
Malkangiri in Odisha is known to be a transit zone for Maoists across Andhra Pradesh and Chattisgarh, but their numbers in the district have declined over the last year and more and more of the members surrendered. As per a report, the party’s East Division Secretary Chalapathi alias Appa Rao, a top leader is believed to have been killed in the encounter.
(More details are awaited. This is a developing story).