Imphal, Nov. 19: Six CRPF personnel, including an assistant sub-inspector, were injured when militants ambushed their vehicle in Manipur’s Bishenpur district this afternoon.
The injured jawans were admitted to the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences here and were stated to be out of danger.
Police sources said the CRPF personnel were travelling in a bus from Imphal towards the Loktak project, where they are posted. They were fired upon from automatic weapons while passing an area known as Nambol Sabal Leikai around 3 pm.
The militants, at least seven in number, were lying in wait inside a parked Tata Sumo at Nambol Sabal Leikai. As the bus passed the Sumo, the militants fired at the jawans. The CRPF personnel also retaliated, but no militant was injured.
Police said the militants escaped in the same vehicle after firing at least seven rounds from inside the Sumo. Police search parties later recovered the vehicle, which had been abandoned near a foothill at Nambol.
The police recovered several empty cases and a bomb from the vehicle, which had been abandoned by the militants. A team of policemen and CRPF personnel jointly launched a search in the area, but nobody was picked up. The injured personnel were identified as 37-year-old D.B. Roy from Assam, 37-year-old Surender Singh from Haryana and 41-year-old Vinod Kumar from Bihar (both head constables), 37-year-old Vijay Yadav of Uttar Pradesh and 25-year-old constable Bora from Assam.
Police said the militants also hurled a bomb at the bus. Most of those injured were hit by splinters from the bomb.
No militant group has claimed responsibility for the attack yet. A senior police officer said police and other security personnel have started checking two-wheelers and private vehicles in different parts of the four valley districts of Manipur following today’s attack.
Chief minister Ibobi Singh, worried by the escalation in militant activities in the run-up to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Manipur later this month, has directed the state home department to put all police stations and other security agencies on maximum alert.