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Andhra Pradesh Police guns down 20 red sandalwood smugglers in Chittoor

April07/ 2015

Hyderabad,April 7: At least 20 red sandalwood smugglers were killed in a joint operation by the Andhra Pradesh police and forest officials in Chittoor district of the state on Tuesday.

However, none of the forest officials and policemen were injured in the incident. According to reports, the encounter began in Seshachalam forest around 5 am at two places within a radius of one km in Chandragiri mandal of Chittoor, about 500 km from Hyderabad.

Deputy Inspector General of Police Kanta Rao told reporters that a large number of red sandalwood smugglers and labourers attacked policemen and pelted stones on them, forcing the officials to open fire in self-defence.

The encounter is still on and many others have sustained injuries due to heavy exchange of gunfire from both sides.

Conflicting reports earlier suggested that a group of heavily armed smugglers attacked the officials during a combing operation, which resulted in severe retaliation from the police personnel.

Chitoor forest officials and the local police had received a tip off about the presence of large number of red sandalwood smugglers in the dense forest of Chitoor and a massive operation was launched to catch them.

Top Andhra Pradesh officials have reached the encounter site and a massive search operation has also been launched in the areas adjoining the Chitoor forest.


Tags: #AndhraPradesh, #Chittoor