- India considers Maoist rebels to be its greatest security threat
- The rebels say they are fighting for the dispossessed
- The attack took place in the Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh state
A landmine explosion triggered by suspected Maoists killed three border guards in eastern India Friday, police said.
The attack happened in the Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh state, as troops were pulling out after completing their deployment in the region, authorities said.
Another border guard also was injured in the explosion that was followed by gunfire, district police chief Ankit Garg told CNN. There were no immediate reports of Maoist casualties.
India regards the communist rebels as its gravest internal security threat.
"Left-wing extremism is the most violent movement in the country," federal home minister P. Chidambaram told a police conference last month. The guerillas, officials say, aim to seize power through an armed liberation struggle.
Chidambaram acknowledged that there has been no significant decline in Maoist violence in several states, including Chhattisgarh.
Since the 1960s, the rebels have said they are fighting for the dispossessed.
Maoists enjoy support not only in the poorest areas and in tribal communities but also among youth and intellectuals, authorities suspect.
In addition to targeting police, alleged police informers and people they call "class enemies," the insurgents also are believed to be attacking infrastructure such as roads, bridges, railways, and power and telecommunication networks.