As many as 25 persons —19 prisoners and six police personnel — were injured in a landmine blast carried out by Maoists in the Kondagao district of Chhattisgarh on Saturday afternoon, police said.

The victims were returning after a court appearance at Kondagao when the ultras targeted the vehicle in which they were travelling.

Kondagao SP Prashant Agrawal told PTI that the vehicle belonged to the Jagdalpur Central Prison and the incident took place on the National Highway 30 near Joba village.

He said six of the victims were critically injured. Four were policemen, one was a prisoner and the other the driver. All the injured were shifted to hospital.

21 landmines recovered

Meanwhile, 21 landmines, planted serially on the Kurung-Ganeshpur path in Latehar district, were recovered during an anti-Maoist operation, the police said in Latehar.

“All the landmines, weighing between one kg to 10 kg, were planted on the route to target security forces,” Superintendent of Police Kranti Kumar told reporters.

He said the security forces discovered the explosives when they found a 10-kg improvised explosive device planted near a well.