The Maoist attack in the Sukma district of Chhattisgarh on Monday, April 24, led to the death of 10 Naxalites and another five of them were injured, sources have said. The attack had led to 25 soldiers of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) being martyred, in what Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh would say was "cold-blooded murder".
The CRPF men who had survived the attack had said 100-150 of them had come under fire from 300-odd Maoists on that fateful day. Since then, it has emerged that not only had the Maoists used local villagers as human shields, but that they had also used sophisticated weapons to perpetrate the attack.
It has also since emerged that the CRPF men were unable to call for help because they could not find signals on mobile phones. The Maoists, after the attack, reportedly fled with several of the deceased CRPF personnel's AK-47 assault rifles. And as is their modus operandi, they did not leave behind any of their deceased or injured.
Support and condolences for the deceased CRPF jawans have since then poured in from all quarters, even as states have announced solatium for the next of kin of the jawans from their state who were killed in the attack. The BJP has also declined to celebrate its win in the MCD elections, and instead dedicated the victory to the CRPF personnel.
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CRPF gets new chief
Meanwhile, the central government on Wednesday, April 26, appointed Senior IPS officer Rajiv Rai Bhatnagar as Director General (DG) of CRPF. Bhatnagar — a 1983-batch IPS officer who currently serves as the DG of the Narcotics Control Bureau — will replace current CRPF DG Sudeep Lakhtakia.
The government has also named RK Pachnanda as DG of the Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP). The appointment was necessitated by current ITBP DG Krishna Chaudhary retiring in June.