Maoists open fire at six polling stations in Chhattisgarh

Raipur, April 16 (Inditop) Armed Maoist rebels created panic at six polling stations in Chhattisgarh’s southern restive Bastar region by opening fire soon after voting for the parliamentary elections began Thursday morning, police said.

“The rebels fired at six booths in Dantewada and Narayanpur districts but no one was injured,” Chhattisgarh Additional Director General of Police Girdhari Nayak told IANS.

About 20 tribals were in queue outside the Mangnar polling station in interior Dantewada when the Maoists attacked. The voters panicked and ran away.

“Two polling booths in Dantewada were attacked. Our forces are exchanging fire with the Naxalites. Polling booths have been secured but the firing is going on… voting has been stopped,” Dantewada Superintendent of Police Rahul Sharma told Times Now news channel.

“Our force repulsed the attack but they (Maoists) are doing a stand off attack from a nearby place. For the safety of voters we have stopped voting and are now sanitising the place. Everybody is safe as of now,” Sharma said.

He added that additional security forces are being rushed to the spot.

Polling for the state 11 parliamentary seats began at 7 a.m. The voting will end in Bastar and Kanker seats by 3 p.m., while polling stations in the other nine seats will close at 4 p.m..