MaoistsThree District Reserve Group (DRG) personnel were on Tuesday injured in a fierce gunbattle with Maoists in the dense forests of Chhattisgarh’s Narayanpur district, police said.

The face-off took place during the wee hours in the forest of Kilam Becha village when a joint squad of the state’s DRG and local police was carrying out an anti-Naxal operation in the region, Special Director General of Police, Anti-Maoist operations, D M Awasthi told PTI.

While they were cordoning-off the forest in Kilam Becha, a group of armed rebels opened indiscriminate fire on them leaving three DRG jawans injured, he said.

However, when the security personnel retaliated heavily, the Naxals fled from the spot.

Reinforcement was rushed to the spot and the injured jawans were evacuated from the forest. They are being airlifted to Raipur for treatment, Awasthi said.

The injured personnel have been identified as – sub-inspector Pushpraj Nagwanshi, assistant sub-inspector Awadh Ram Sahu and constable Vinay Singh, police said.

Nagwanshi sustained critical injuries in the incident.

Police suspect that some Naxals might have also been injured or killed in the gun battle as bloodstains were found at the spot, he said.

A combing operation has been launched in the region, the police official said.

A joint team of security forces from Narayanpur and Kondagaon districts had launched the anti-Naxal operation on Monday in the bordering areas of the districts, located around 400 kms from Raipur.

During the operation, exchange of fire between the security personnel and Naxals took place at various places.

Besides, a Maoist camp was also unearthed by the security forces in a separate encounter in the district, Awasthi said.