New Delhi: The CRPF constable bled for seven hours and trudged a distance of 9 km to the base camp before succumbing to his injuries in the Maoist attack in Chattisgarh bringing to the fore the need for speedy evacuation of the injured in anti-Naxal operations.

Thirteen CRPF personnel died on the spot in the ambush on a security patrol on Monday in Sukhma district and the toll rose to 14 after the death of the 26-year-old constable Deepak Kumar that night.

Three days after the deadly attck, it has emerged that Kumar, who was critically injured in the encounter, could not be saved as he could not get proper medical care. He hailed from Samba in Jammu and Kashmir, Official sources said today that the constable battled his bullet injuries bravely with blood oozing from his body for close to seven hours.

Not only this, Kumar also dragged himself for close to 9 km from the battleground to the Chintagufa camp of CRPF where he was treated by the doctors available there.

"He needed treatment on a larger scale and the doctors at Chintagufa camp could only help him for few hours. His
colleagues saw him dying," the sources said. Kumar died around 11 PM.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh was briefed about this episode by the CRPF top brass when he met them on December 2 in Raipur.

The encounter in Kalsapara village ended by 4 PM but IAF helicopters could not land as the area was not sanitised and it was also getting dark for flying operations in the dense forest area.