Saluting the "martyrdom" of CRPF personnel who lost their lives in a Naxal attack yesterday, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said the sacrifices of jawans will not go in vain.
Describing the attack as a "cowardly act", Rajnath said, "It is an unfortunate and sad attack on security personnel. I salute their martyrdom."
Rajnath was talking to reporters at the headquarters of the 4th battalion of Chhattisgarh Armed Force in Mana Camp area here late this evening.
Earlier, Singh paid homage to 12 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel killed in a Naxal ambush in Sukma, during wreath laying ceremony there.
"Maoists have executed a cowardly act on security forces who were rendering their duty. A mega road construction work is underway and about to complete. Security personnel were patrolling there, when they came under the attack. I salute their martyrdom. I salute the courage and valour of the jawans of CRPF and Chhattisgarh police," Singh said.
Expressing condolences to the bereaved families, he said, "I wanted to assure the entire country that martyrdom of our jawans will not go in vain."
"Maoists' activities have drastically declined and therefore they have executed this incident in disappointment and frustration. But we are confident that we will soon gain gain control over them," he asserted.
He further said after reaching Raipur he visited the hospital to see the injured jawans and said they are out of danger.
"We are making all possible efforts that the bodies of martyred personnel will reach their native places by tomorrow evening," he said.
Besides, it has been also decided that the total ex-gratia which will be given to the families of the slain jawans should not be less then Rs 1 crore, he added.
"Indeed martyrdom of a martyr is priceless and cannot be assessed for money. Their contribution for the society and country can never be forgotten," said Singh.
Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh and other ministers and officials were also present.
Earlier, the Union Home minister chaired a high level meeting with Raman Singh, Home Minister Ramsewak Paikra and other senior police officials.
According to government officials, during the meeting the home minister said the Centre is committed to root out Left wing extremism and will extend every possible support to the state to tackle the menace.
Twelve CRPF personnel belonging to 219th battalion were killed and three others injured when Naxals ambushed their patrol party in Bhejji police station area of Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Sukma district this morning.
The attack that took place in the dense forests of Bhejji police station limits at 9:15 AM when a patrol party was out for a road opening task near Kotacheru village.
112 security personnel were part of the patrol party.
The Naxals also looted ten weapons and two radio sets from the killed men, officials said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his grief over the saddening incident.
“Saddened by the killing of CRPF personnel in Sukma. Tributes to the martyrs & condolences to their families. May the injured recover quickly,” tweeted PM Modi.
A considerable three-fold rise has been recorded by the Union Home Ministry in the number of Maoists who have surrendered in2016. However, there has also been a spike in the number of deaths of civilians, mostly of alleged police informers, in violence involving left-wing extremists, when compared to 2015.
The figures available with the ministry till December 15, 2016 show that 1,420 Maoists surrendered this year as compared to 570 in 2015, 670 in 2014 and 282 in 2013.