Raipur: Naxals targeted a bus ferrying nearly 30 jawans with an improvised explosive device (IED) in Chhattisgarh's Bijapur, leaving two of them dead and five injured, the second attack on Monday ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the district on Saturday.
Earlier this morning, Naxals had triggered twin IED blasts and opened fire on a patrolling team of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) on Bijapur-Bhopalpatnam road in the district that led to a gun-battle. However, no casualty was reported on either side in that incident.
The explosion targeting the bus occurred near Godma village, around 450 kms from the state capital, when the jawans were out on an anti-Maoist operation, police said.
"Two jawans belonging to the District Reserve Guard (DRG) were killed and five others sustained injuries in the explosion," a senior police official told PTI. The IED blast damaged the front portion of the bus, which was carrying a squad of at least 30 jawans.
The personnel sitting in the front side bore the brunt of the explosion, he said. Additional personnel were rushed to the spot soon after the incident and the injured jawans were taken to a hospital in Bijapur, he said.
Notably, the security forces have intensified search operations in the forest in view of the prime minister's visit to Bijapur scheduled on April 14.
Further details are awaited.