M.M. Sharma thought he was going to die after being ambushed
New Delhi: “Mother. I love you. It is possible I will die in this attack,” Doordarshan cameraman M.M. Sharma said over his mobile phone as Maoists ambushed a team of policemen and Doordarshan journalists. But he had a miraculous escape.
The assistant cameraman was with two other colleagues and a police patrol when they were attacked by Maoists in Chhattisgarh’s Dantewada district on Tuesday.
As bullets whizzed overhead and grenades exploded around him, a shaken Sharma dived for cover on the ground, realising he could get killed.
He whipped out his mobile phone and recorded a video message for his mother, which he thought would be his last.
On Wednesday, Sharma released the transcript of the message, punctuated by gunfire and exploding grenades as a large group of Maoists surrounded them and took on the security personnel in a lonely stretch.
“There has been a terrorist attack. We had come to Dantewada for election coverage. We were travelling by road… The army was with us. Suddenly, Maoists surrounded us… The situation is not right,” he said.
“I do not know why but I am not feeling scared even after staring at death. It will be hard to escape. Six or seven jawans [soldiers] are with us. We are surrounded from all sides,” said Sharma, speaking haltingly in Hindi.
Although he survived, two policemen were killed on the spot while his cameraman colleague Achyuta Nanda Sahu was seriously injured and died in a hospital. A third policeman died on Wednesday.
The Doordarshan crew was moving from Aranpur police station to Nilaway village along with the policemen in vehicles when they were attacked.
The other Doordarshan colleague who too survived was journalist Dheeraj Kumar.
Chhattisgarh is set to elect a new assembly in November.