Indian police target Maoist groups

Fighters and police officers die in gun battles in states of Chattisgarh and Orissa.

    Maoist have been launching regular raids in eastern and central India, targeting police officers [EPA]

    Orissa clashes
     
    Meanwhile, heavy fighting continued for a third day in a neighbouring state of Orissa.

    Government-backed troops scoured through forests in five districts of eastern Orissa for Maoist fighters on Monday.
     
    The area is about 1,800km southeast of New Delhi.

    TK Mishra, the home secretary of the Orissa state government, said: "We are hopeful of completing the operation very soon, but we'll continue the operation till we get full success."

    Mishra said up to 20 fighters were killed since the group launched a wave of attacks on government targets last week.

    At least 400 fighters took part in Friday's attacks and stole roughly 1,000 weapons, Gopal Chander Nanda, the director-general of the state police, had said.

    Officers killed
     
    Four police stations, a training academy and an armoury in the Nayagarh district were attacked, killing 13 police officers, a village guard and a civilian.

    Orissa is one of India's poorest states and part of an eastern swath of the country where the Maoists, who claim to be fighting for the rights of neglected tribal people and landless farmers, appear to be gaining ground.

    The movement grew out of a peasant uprising in 1967 and has hit half of India's 29 states.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    The War in October: What Happened in 1973?

    The War in October: What Happened in 1973?

    Al Jazeera examines three weeks of war from which both Arabs and Israelis claimed to emerge victorious.