Kolkata: Top Maoist leader Kishenji was killed by security forces in a fierce gunfight in West Bengal on Thursday.
Kishenji was reportedly killed in the Kushboni forests near Jhargram during anti-Maoist operations by the joint forces. Three other accomplices of Kishenji have also been killed in the gunbattle, according to reports.
Massive joint operations are still underway in Jhargram with the police reportedly looking for Kishenji's aide, Suchitra Mahato.
Officials say the body of the 58-year-old Maoist was identified by his AK 47. He had been in hiding for over three decades.
Reports about the Maoist leader's death had surfaced two years ago too, but it was later found that he had escaped.
Kishenji's death is a major breakthrough and comes amidst full-fledged anti-Naxal operations by the West Bengal government. The decision had, in fact, led the interlocutors to quit but Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee urged them to stay on. But even as she said that she favoured a dialogue with the Maoists, she reiterated that the violence unleashed by the Left ultras wasn't acceptable.