New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Days after the Naxal attack on soldiers in Bijapur killing 22 of them, the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist) issued an open letter on Wednesday mentioning its willingness to negotiate with the Central government and also asked the government to announce mediators in order to release the abducted jawan.

"In the Bijapur attack, 24 security personnel lost their lives and 31 of them injured. One jawan is in our custody. Four People's Liberation Guerrilla Army personnel lost their lives. We are ready to negotiate with the government. They can announce mediators. We will release him (captive jawan). Police jawans are not our enemies," the letter by CPI(Maoist) reads.

Meanwhile, the Director-General of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) Kuldeep Singh on Tuesday said that security forces fought with 700-750 trained Naxals, broke the ambush and neutralised more than 28-30 Naxals, secured weapons and rescued injured jawans in the Bijapur operation.

"It was a search and destroy operation. The forces went to the area on April 3 and searched the area in the early morning light. When they were returning after the search, Naxals who had set up an ambush, started randomly firing at the security forces using countrymade Under Barrel Grenade Launcher (UBGL) and large numbers of light machine guns (LMG) and other automatic weapons. There were approximately 700-750 Naxals with whom forces fought and broke their ambush," Singh said as quoted by ANI.

Singh also said that the attackers have said that 28 Naxals have died in the operation but since they do not reveal the actual number of casualties, it would be more than that.

24 security personnel lost their lives while 31 sustained injuries in an encounter that broke out between security forces and Naxals along the Sukma-Bijapur border on Saturday after a party of jawans were ambushed by Maoists near Jonnaguda village.

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan