A cameraman from India’s national broadcaster and two police officers were killed in an ambush by Maoist rebels in the central state of Chhattisgarh on Tuesday, officials said.

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The crew from the Doordarshan news channel were travelling in Dantewada district for election coverage when their vehicle came under attack by Maoist rebels.

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Senior police officer Sundar Raj told reporters that the crew were accompanying a police team in the area for patrolling and that two other police officers were injured as part of the ambush.

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The left-wing rebels, who have called for a boycott of the state polls in November, have stepped up attacks in recent days.

They usually target security personnel and government officials but attacks on journalists are rare.

On Saturday, four paramilitary troopers were killed when the rebels blew up their anti-landmine vehicle in Bijapur district.

The Maoist guerrillas, who reject parliamentary democracy, say their armed rebellion is to secure rights for the poor and marginalised.

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They operate in forest belts in several states across India.

According to the South Asia Terrorism Portal, Chhattisgarh is one of the states worst affected by Maoist insurgency, which has left more than 7,661 civilians, militants and security personnel dead since 2005.

NAN

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