Update at 1:00 PM: BSF personnel SI Mahender Singh who suffered injuries in IED blast in Koyalibeda district succumbed to injuries.
A day ahead of the first phase of assembly elections in Chhattisgarh, one Maoist has been gunned down and another has been captured by the security forces in a fierce encounter between the Maoists and the forces in the Bijapur district in the state.
According to reports, in a separate incident, a set of 6 IEDs were planted in several parts of the state including Gome and Gattakal villages in Koyalibeda district of Chhattisgarh. All the six IEDs were triggered by the Maoists at the same time on Sunday morning. A BSF ASI Jawan has also suffered injuries after the attack in Kanker’s Koyelibeda area. As the search operation continues, the security forces have also recovered several arms and ammunitions from the Maoists in the sector.
Furthermore, Maoists have also dug dozens of pits in several parts of the state and issued slogans and warnings to boycott the elections.
"Ban the fake assembly elections in Chhattisgarh," reads the letter:
While more information is still awaited, this incident took place just two days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress chief Rahul Gandhi visited the state for their election campaigning.
During the address to the mega rally in the Jagdalpur district on Friday, Prime Minister Modi expressed his discontent at the damage caused by the Maoists in several parts of the state, in earlier events. He said:
"Kids who should have had pencils in their hands, these people(Maoists) give guns in their hands. They ruin their lives and destroy the dreams of their parents. These people with destructive ideology burn schools and damage hospitals. You must have seen there are urban naxals who are living in cities in air conditioned houses, look cleans and their children live in abroad but they ruined kids of rural areas. There are political parties who are helping urban naxals but giving gyaans in rural areas against Maoists. Can we forgive such poeple?"
Meanwhile, as Maoists have called in to boycott the upcoming polls, security has been tightened in several districts. Preparations of elections are underway in the state. The first phase of polls covers 18 constituencies of eight Maoist-affected districts in the state. The remaining 72 constituencies will go into polls on November 20. The counting of votes will be held on December 11.
The last few weeks have been witness to a number of Maoist attacks, with two in Dantewada inflicting civilian and security personnel casualties.