An anti-Naxal operation in Chhattisgarh’s Dumka left one Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) jawan dead and four others injured.

The encounter began during a search operation at around 3.30 am on Sunday in the forests of Taldangal.

The police said that the Maoists opened fire at the security forces when the latter were carrying out the search operation.

Superintendent of Police YS Ramesh said that at least five Maoists were shot in the retaliatory action.

“In an encounter with Naxals in Dumka, one jawan has lost his life and 4 others are injured. According to our information 4-5 Naxals have been shot,” he was quoted as saying by ANI.

The SP said that the Naxals retreated into the forest.

The slain jawan has been identified as Niraj Chetri. The four injured have been identified as Rajesh Kumar Rai, Sonu Kumar, Satish Gujar and Karan Kumar.

According to the police, Rai was airlifted to Ranchi for treatment. The other three were admitted to the Dumka Sadar Hospital.

The incident happened exactly one month after a major Naxal attack in Maharashtra’s Gadchroli district. Left-wing extremists killed 15 security personnel and a driver by triggering an IED blast on a police vehicle on 1 May.

The Naxals triggered an improvised explosive device (IED) to blow up the police vehicle on the Kurkheda-Korchi road in Gadchiroli when a team of the C-60 commandoes, an anti-Naxal unit, was patrolling the area.

The incident came on a day when Maharashtra was celebrating its Foundation Day.