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A top Maoist leader has been killed in an encounter with security forces in Odisha’s Bolangir district.

DGP Abhay said an anti-Maoist operation was launched on Saturday evening based on reliable information in the Junanibahal area of Khaprakhol police station in the district.

The Maoists first fired at the security personnel and in retaliation, the security personnel returned the fire, he said.

In the exchange of fire one Maoist identified as Shankar, a member of the Bolangir-Bargarh-Mahasamund division of the left-wing extremists has been neutralized, the DGP said.

Abhay said there were six to eight Maoist rebels in the area during the exchange of fire.

Arms and ammunition and some incriminating Maoist materials have been seized from the spot. Combing operation is still underway.

Though the Maoist activities largely declined in the State, there is still some presence in Bolangir and Bargarh. Adequate security personnel has been deployed in these areas to counter the Maoist activities, he added.

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