A naxal was killedin a gun- battle with security forces in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Sukma district today, police said.

The exchange of fire took place early this morning in the forests between Pidmel and Palamdgu villages under Polampalli police station limits, Sukma Superintendent of Police, Abhishek Meena said.

A joint team of District Reserve Guard (DRG) and Special Task Force (STF)was out on a counter-insurgency operation in the interiors of Polampalli, nearly 450-km from here, he said.

The forces came under heavy firing from a group of rebels, while they were cordoning off jungles connecting Pidmel and Palamdgu, leading to a prolonged gunfight, he said.

After the guns fell silent, the security forces searched the area and recovered the body of a naxal along with three country-made firearms, explosivesand other Maoist-related materials from the spot, the SP said.

The deceased was identified as Podiyam Bheema, an area militia commander of Maoists, who was handling operations of the outlawed outfit in at least 10 villages of the region.

Besides, several cases related to Maoist incidents, including attacks on police party, were also registered against him, he said.

On September 17, two naxals were killed in an encounter with security forces in Sukma’s Golapallli police station area.