Six Naxalites, two of them carrying rewards on their heads, were arrested and explosives were seized from their possession in Chhattisgarh’s Bastar division, police said on Friday.

Three Naxalites were apprehended from Polampalli police station area in Sukma district in the early hours of Friday when they were allegedly trying to plant an explosive to target security personnel, a senior police official said.

Teams of the District Reserve Guard (DRG), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), its elite unit Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (CoBRA) and district force had launched a search operation from Dornapal and Polamaplli police stations into interior forest on Thursday night, he said.

“One of the patrolling teams spotted three suspects between Medwahi and Arlampalli villages when they were digging a pit on a dirt track to allegedly plant an IED. The trio tried to escape, but were caught after a short chase,” the official said.

Muchaki Ganga (32), Madkam Bheema (27) and Kalmu Pojja (20), all residents of Badepara Arlampalli village, were caught, he said, adding that Muchaki, who was the head of Chetna Natya Mandli (a cultural wing of outlawed CPI (Maoist)), carried a reward of Rs 1 lakh on his head.

The security personnel seized a tiffin bomb, five gelatin rods, a cordex wire, six non-electric detonators, batteries and firecrackers were recovered from their possession, he said.

The trio had allegedly been involved in attacks in Dornapal and Polampalli areas in the past, he said.

In a separate action, three more Naxalites were arrested following an encounter with security personnel in a forest near Idenar village in Bijapur district on Wednesday, the official said.

A joint team of the Special Task Force (STF), DRG from Dantewada and Bijapur and CoBRA was involved in this action, he said.

Acting on a tip-off about the presence of Naxalite leaders along the border of Dantewada-Bijapur districts, security forces had launched the operation on Tuesday, he said.

A gun battle broke out the next day between the patrolling team and Naxalites, and the latter soon fled the scene, he said.

Three Naxalites, including two women, were apprehended from the spot when they were trying to escape with their bags, he said.

The security personnel nabbed Guddu Kursam (25), a member of the Gangaloor Local Organisation Squad (LOS) of Maoists, and low-rung members Hungi Awlam (27) and Ido (28), the official said

Kursam was carrying a cash reward of Rs 1 lakh, he said.

A tiffin bomb, gelatin rods, cordex wire, detonators, electric wire and batteries were seized from their bags, he added.