After the killing of two policemen and a Doordarshan cameraman in a Maoist attack in Dantewada Tuesday, Maoists on Friday released a statement saying ‘DD Cameraman Achutyanand Sahu was killed after being caught in the ambush’ and they had no intention of targeting the media.
Naxals release a statement on Dantewada attack, saying 'DD Cameraman Achutyanand Sahu was killed after being caught in the ambush and we had no intention of targeting the media.' pic.twitter.com/bAoEQ8ScaS— ANI (@ANI) November 2, 2018
The murder incident took place in a forest area near Nilawaya village around 11 am on October 30, when the Maoists ambushed a squad of local police which was carrying out patrolling on motorcycles from Sameli camp towards Nilawaya, deputy inspector general (anti-Naxal operations) Sundarraj said. During the encounter, two policemen and DD camera person Achutyanand were killed and two others were injured.
A three-member team of Doordarshan was travelling for election-related news coverage when it was caught in the cross-fire. Sub-inspector Rudra Pratap Singh, assistant constable Mangalu and DD News Cameraman Achyutanand Sahu were killed in the attack, Sundarraj said.Sahu had come from New Delhi for the election coverage.
Other two members of the DD team, including a journalist, were safe, the officer said. Constable Vishnu Netam and assistant constable Rakesh Kaushal sustained injuries in the gunfight, he added.
Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore condemned the attack and said the insurgents won't be able to weaken the government resolve.
"Strongly condemn the Naxal attack on @DDNewsLive crew in Dantewada. Deeply saddened by the demise of our cameramanAchyuta Nanda Sahu and two jawans of @crpfindia. These insurgents will NOT weaken our resolve. We WILL prevail," the minister tweeted.
Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Ram Singh said: “Naxals never stop from executing their act of cowardice. As soon as elections approach, they do something to affect them. Their goal is to spread terror but we won't to be scared.”
The special director general of police (Anti-Naxal operations) DM Awasthi said the attack was not related to the upcoming elections.
“Today's ambush was to target the road construction work in Dantewada's Aranpur. Naxals had warned against causing harm if the road construction work continued. More anti-Naxal operations will be conducted in the coming days,” Awasthi added.
The assembly election will be held in Chhattisgarh in two phases - November 12 and November 20. The Maoist-affected districts of southern Chhattisgarh will vote in the first phase of polling.