Jamshedpur, June 10: Nine policemen and a CRPF officer were killed in a Naxalite attack in Saranda forest, about 120km from Jamshedpur, this morning.
The policemen died in a landmine blast that ripped apart their vehicle while the CRPF inspector, who was part of the convoy on routine patrol, was shot in the head.
Sudhir Kumar Jha, superintendent of police, West Singhbhum, said: There was only one route to that spot which was considered to be a rebel-stronghold area deep in the Saranda jungle. As Naxalites are aware of the topography and knew that the convoy would have to return through the same spot, they had planted a powerful can-bomb and ambushed the police vehicle. The killed policemen were all from West Singhbhum, Jha added.
The convoy included a landmine-protected vehicle, which had just crossed the spot when the blast occurred and blew up the vehicle behind it carrying the nine police jawans. The vehicle was tossed 25 feet into the air and the bodies of the jawans were flung up to 60 metres away.
Police and paramilitary jawans trailing the vehicle then took position and fired at the Naxalites. In the hour-long encounter, one CRPF official was killed. The incident took place around 8.15am.