The Naxalites started firing at the police party, a C-60 commando unit with four officers, which was on a routine patrol in the area, killing four of the 23 policemen on the spot. The deceased policemen have been identified as provisional sub-inspector S R Parekar and constables Vinod Uike, Ajay Maste and Vasant Madavi.
SI Nalawade and constables Gangaram Sidam, Diwakar Gawade, Vikram Thakur and Ganpat Soyam are undergoing treatment at Nagpur.”Their condition is out of danger,” SP Rajesh Pradhan told The Indian Express.
Of late, Naxalites have been active in Etapalli area, where they have burnt a few trucks, damaged a church and killed a man recently. However, the sudden strike in Aheri has startled the police. “They have been trying to engage us since the past few days,” Pradhan said.
Last time Naxalites attacked the police on such a big scale was in 2005 when 14 policemen were killed in two blasts in Gadchiroli and neighbouring Gondia districts. That year as many as 25 police personnel were killed in attacks as against only three Naxalites.