RANCHI: Three CoBRA jawans were injured when Maoists triggered an IED (improvised explosive device) blast on Thursday in a extremists dominated location atop Parasnath hills in Giridih district to target a contingent of security forces continuously chasing them in the hills for the last 48 hours.
ADG operations and police spokesperson S N Pradhan said jawans were hurt by splinters after the blast. “The injured were evacuated and given medical treatment. All of them are out of danger,” he said.
A source said jaw of one of the three jawans was badly hurt. They were brought to the foothills by another CoBRA team for medical treatment.
Believing that 25-odd Maoists led by CPI(Maoist) Jharkhand regional committee secretary Ajay Mahto and his aide Nunu Chand Mahto are holed up in Madhuban area of Parasnath hill, an anti-Maoist operation was mounted on Wednesday.
Parasnath is the highest mountain peak in Jharkhand. A Jain temple Shikharji, located on its top, makes it among the most sacred Jain pilgrimage sites.
Maoists exploit the topographical advantages of the hill which rests between Maoist-hit Dhanbad and Giridih and in the east of Bokaro district.
“The Maoists engaged security forces in an encounter on Wednesday. The intermittent firing is going on since then,” DIG Hazaribag Upendra Prasad told TOI.
ADG Pradhan said Maoists were possibly hit by bullets. “No dead body has been recovered so far,” he said.
Three CRPF companies from Dhanbad’s Topchachi and from Giridih’s Khokhra and Madhuban camps besides 10 teams from 203 CoBRA battalions are engaged in the ongoing combing and search operation.
The police claimed it has busted a Maoist camp and seized valuables. “The recovered items are packed in a tin-box enveloped in a plastic sheet,” Prasad said.
A bomb disposal squad was sent from Hazaribag to safely unlock the box, a police officer said.