Pamed: An encounter has broken out between naxals and security forces in Bijapur's Pamed area in Chhattisgarh on Monday.

Shots were heard at around 12:20 pm today. According to reports, firing is underway.

The first phase of the Chhattisgarh assembly elections kick-started on Monday morning.  Eighteen out of 90 constituencies in the state will go to the polls in which 190 candidates are contesting.

As many as one lakh security personnel, including paramilitary forces, have been posted in the state.

However, the election is being marred by sporadic violence. Amid tight security, an improvised explosive device (IED) was detonated by Maoists today in Dantewada region at around 5:30 am to target security forces. No one was hurt in the incident.

Maoists boycotting the elections have appealed to the locals not to vote. Banned outfit supporters have pasted posters asking locals not go to the polling station.