One naxal was killed and two policemen were injured in an encounter between security personnel and ultras at a weekly market in Chhattisgarh's Bijapur district, police said.
The skirmish took place around 11.30 am in Basaguda village, located around 450 kms away from the capital Raipur.
It happened when a police team was patrolling the area to ensure protection to the weekly market held today, Bijapur Superintendent of Police Mohit Garg.
"As per the preliminary information, a group of 15 to 20 naxalites, dressed as civilians, opened fire on two jawans and also attacked them with sharp weapons in a bid to kill them and loot their weapons, like in the previous attacks committed by ultras during the weekly markets," he said.
Two assistant constables belonging to District Force, identified as Punem Shankar and Umant Rao Durgam, sustained injuries in the attack. Naxals tried to escape with their weapons but could not do so due to heavy retaliatory action by the police personnel, Garg said.
In view of the presence of villagers at the market, the security personnel had to be cautious in their retaliatory action, he said.
"In the exchange of fire, one naxal was gunned down on the spot while two more ultras sustained bullet injuries. But their colleagues managed to drag them into the forest taking advantage of the crowd in the market," he said.
Soon after getting informed, reinforcement was rushed to the spot and the injured jawans were being evacuated to Bijapur from where they will be airlifted to Raipur for treatment, he said.
The condition of assistant constable Punem is said to be in a seious condition, he said adding that the deceased naxal is yet to be identified.
A joint team of security forces has launched combing in the area to trace the attackers, he added.