DANTEWADA, India – Maoist rebels have attacked a convoy of India's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party with an improvised explosive device as it traveled through the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh.
The Press Trust of India reports that the attack occurred Tuesday in the Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh, an insurgent stronghold, just two days before a multi-phase general election begin in India.
Indian media report that a state lawmaker and several security personnel were killed in the attack.
The rebels, inspired by Chinese revolutionary leader Mao Zedong, have been fighting the government for more than four decades, demanding land and jobs for tenant farmers, the poor and indigenous communities. They claim thousands of fighters and control vast swaths of territory in several Indian states.
The government calls the rebels India's biggest internal security threat.