With the recovery of two more bodies on Monday, the death toll in the landmine blast by Maoists in Koraput district of south Orissa rose to eleven.

The two Special Operation Group (SOG) jawans had been missing since the blast. Portions of their bodies were located at over 50 metres from the spot of blast on Govindpalli ghat road. One of the bodies was hanging from the branches of a tree at a height of over 20 feet. It hinted at the intensity of the blast. Initial investigations suggest that more than 50 kg of explosives were used for the blast.

Investigation

A high-level police team led by the Director-General of Police (Intelligence) Prakash Mishra and Inspector-General of Police (Operations) Sanjiv Marik reached the blast spot to investigate.

The Police Department has admitted that the SOG jawans fell prey to the naxal trap due to some tactical errors.

Mr. Mishra said the mishap occurred as the jawans did not adhere to the norms and precautions of ‘Special Operation Procedure.' It was said that while on a mission to sanitise the area for troop movement, the jawans should have walked through the ghat road area rather than travelling by a minibus.

The Home Department has directed the Koraput Superintendent of Police (SP) to file a report regarding the errors that led to this mass killing of policemen by naxals.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said action to revitalise the police force in naxal-infested areas would be initiated once the reports are received from Mr. Mishra and Mr. Marik.

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