13-15 CRPF personnel were killed when Naxals attacked security forces by using villagers as human shields in Chhattisgarh’s Sukma district, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said tonight.
“13 to 15 CRPF personnel were killed in the attack that took place in Chintagufa area of Chhattisgarh. The Naxals have carried out the attack by putting innocent villagers as human shields,” he told reporters here.
The Home Minister said has spoken to National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Union Home Secretary Anil Goswami, Director of Intelligence Bureau Asif Ibrahim and Director General of CRPF about the incident and took stock of the situation.
“I am waiting for a detailed report,” he said.
Singh said he wanted to travel to Chhattisgarh tonight itself but due to some logistical problem the visit could not be undertaken.
“I will go to Chhattisgarh tomorrow,” he said.
Rajnath Singh termed the Naxal attack on a CRPF patrol in Chhattisgarh as “an act of cowardice” and Maoist violence was a challenge not only for the government but also for the country and its people and stressed that all will have to deal with it jointly.
He said had the innocent villagers not been used by the Naxals as a shield, such a big casualty would not have been suffered by CRPF in today’s attack.
“Had they not used innocent villagers as shields, they would not have succeeded in inflicting such a big casualty as our CRPF jawans do not fire on innocents and they (Naxals) took advantage of this”, Singh said.
To a question whether Naxals took advantage of security forces being busy in Jharkhand elections, Singh said it should not be seen in that light.
For checking recurrence of such incidents, he said the government would do whatever is necessary for stopping it.