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Many Naxals were killed in Chhattisgarh attack: KPS Gill
Onkar Singh in New Delhi | March 16, 2007 22:19 IST
Security Advisor to the Chhattisgarh government and former director-general of Punjab police Kanwar Pal Singh Gill has claimed that many Naxalites were also killed during their pre-dawn attack on a police post in Dantewada district, where 55 people were killed.
Speaking to rediff.com over phone from his office in Raipur, Gill said combing operations were being personally supervised by Director-General of Police R S Rathore.
"According to the reports from the spot, over 600 Naxals attacked the police post in the remote place in Dantewada's forests.
"The attack took place around 2.30 in the morning. We got the information within few minutes and the reinforcements were rushed to the spot. We engaged them in exchange of fire for nearly three hours. We have strong reasons to believe that a large number of Naxals were killed but the bodies could not be found because they may have carried them," Gill said.
Chief Minister Raman Singh has asked Gill to use helicopters to place the troops at strategic places. The state DGP was asked to camp in Dantewada and mount a search operation.
"From the manner in which they carried out the massacre, it is evident that they had done a recce before carrying out the operation. They may have come posing as villagers or businessmen. Without prior survey it is not possible to carry out an operation of this scale.
"We took time in reaching the spot because we do not take roads to reach the spot as the fear is that the roads may have been mined. So a distance of 10 kilometers was covered in almost 2 hours.
"It is our suspicion that they got to know that the reinforcements were coming through well placed spotters or modules. But they were not allowed to get away without a challenge," he said.
According to him the Naxals asked for at least 25 cots from the villagers to take away the dead and injured with them.
A meeting of the senior state police officers would take place once Rathore returns to Raipur on Saturday by noon to decide the next course of action, Gill said.