ON HIS fourth day as the new Superintendent of Police of Gadchiroli, Abhinav Deshmukh led an inter-state operation along with the Adilabad police in Telangana to kill three senior-level Naxals in an encounter on the Maharashtra-Telangana border Sunday.
The deceased were later identified as Mangi divisional committee member Charles alias Athram Shobhan (31), a resident of Adilabad district, Indarveli area committee member Mukesh (25) and Mangi area committee member Dinesh (18), both from Chhattisgarh. While Charles carried a reward of Rs 16 lakh, while the other two carried that of Rs 6 lakh each, said a press note issued by the Gadchiroli police.
“This is a major success for the police, since all three were very senior cadres,” Deshmukh told The Indian Express.
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“We had intelligence input about movement of a Telangana-based dalam in the Kotapali forest near Vyankatapur in the Aheri tehsil of the district. So, along with the Telangana police, we conducted a joint operation in the area. Around 6 am on Sunday, an encounter ensued between police and the Naxals. After about 40 minutes of gunbattle, the Naxals ran away. But we recovered three bodies from the spot along with an AK-47, an SLR and a .303 rifle,” said the SP.
With Sunday’s casualties, the total number of Naxals killed in encounters with the police in Gadchiroli this year has gone up to eight.
Earlier this year, five woman Naxal cadres were killed in different encounters in the district.
Deshmukh took over as SP from Sandip Patil on June 15. Patil has been transferred to Satara where Deshmukh was his predecessor.