Bhopal: Three Maoists, collectively carrying a reward of over ₹ 30 lakh, were killed in an encounter with security forces in Madhya Pradesh's Balaghat district on Monday morning, state Home Minister Narottam Mishra said.

The killed rebels included a woman.

The encounter took place in Bahela police station area in the Balaghat district, located about 450 km from the state capital Bhopal, Mr Mishra told reporters here.

"Three Maoists carrying rewards on their heads were killed in the encounter between the police's Hawk Force and the rebels," he said.

The area where the encounter took place is located near the Maharashtra border, he said.

The killed Maoists were identified as their divisional committee member Nagesh, carrying a reward worth ₹ 15 lakh, and area commanders Manoj and a woman, Rame, both carrying a reward of ₹ 8 lakh each, he said.

The Hawk Force is vigilant in all Maoist-affected areas, he added.