The four accused in the last month’s rape-and-murder case of a 26-year-old woman veterinarian were killed in an exchange of fire with police near Hyderabad on Friday morning.

“I have got information that the four accused were killed in an encounter. If any accused tries to escape (from police custody) in this way, then the police don’t have any other option,” Baghel said while talking to reporters at the airport here.

“I can say that justice has been done (in the case),” he added.

The incident took place around 6.30 am when the accused were taken to the site of the offence for the reconstruction of the scene of the crime as part of the investigation, a senior police official said.

“They (accused) snatched weapons from police and fired on police and tried to escape… police fired in retaliation in which the four accused died,” a senior Telangana police official told PTI.

Meanwhile, Baghel has asked officials to prepare an effective integrated plan to ensure the protection of women in the state, an official statement issued here on Friday said.

“Baghel has directed Chief Secretary R P Mandal to submit an integrated plan on women’s safety within two weeks,” it said.

“Progress and development of any society is not possible without the participation of women. Women’s participation is also a key element in the development of Chhattisgarh and providing a safe environment to them is an essential responsibility of the government, for which it is committed,” the release quoted the CM as saying.

There is a need to take strong steps for the protection of women in view of the recent incidents of crime against them, he asserted.

“Separate schemes for the welfare and safety of women are being run by the police department as well as women and child development department.

“But the need is to operate all these schemes in a combined manner,” Baghel said, adding the two departments will collectively chalk out an integrated plan on women’s safety.

The CM asked the authorities to make the police emergency service – ‘Dial 112’ – more effective.

He ordered to rope in the latest technology to create mobile-based multiple applications to extend assistance to women in times of emergency, the statement said.