Naxal: IED blast in Bihar kills ten CRPF commandos

PATNA: At least 10  CRPF commandos belonging to its elite COBRA battalion were killed in an IED blast in the jungles of Bihar’s Aurangabad district on Monday, officials said.

The personnel of the COBRA unit were ambushed after which an encounter started between the two sides, they said. The encounter took place as CRPF personnel started combing operation on information of a big assembly of ultras in Madanpur, a heavily Maoist-infested area of Aurangabad. As CRPF and Bihar Police team marched, a group of Maoists, hiding near Dumri Nala ambushed them.

Bihar DGP PK Thakur told media that there were reports of several IED blasts at the encounter site. Officials said the casualties may rise as some of the personnel of the Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (COBRA) were critically injured in a fierce gunbattle, which was still raging.

After the Maoists opened fire first, the CRPF retaliated and killed three Maoists and injured half-a-dozen others. The Maoists, however, succeeded in taking away their injured associates to safe spots.

The personnel belonged to the 205th COBRA battalion and were deployed in the state for conducting anti-Maoist operations. This is one of the biggest casualties of the elite COBRA unit.