Thursday, December 29, 2005

Maoists warn government of retaliation, justify killings

Statesman News Service
PARALAKHEMUNDI, Dec. 29. — The Maoists have warned the Orissa government of retaliation if the police continued to follow a “trigger happy” attitude as had been seen recently when two innocent people — Rajesh and Sujit — were injured in the Keonjhar district.

In a release purportedly written by the secretary CPI (Maoist), Orissa State Organisational Committee, Sunil, the extremists have condemned the police firing.
“This is an attack on innocent people of Orissa who are being unnecessarily targeted on the pretext of taking action against Naxalites,” it stated.
Justifying the killings of the corrupt and dishonest persons who, according to the Naxalites, are a burden on the society, the CPI (Maoist) has demanded that the state government immediately declare a compensation of Rs 2 lakh each to the two
victims.

Maoist Training Costs Pregnant Lady Her Life: RNA

THT Online
Kathmandu, December 30:

A four-month-pregnant woman died while undergoing militia training by the Maoists, the Royal Nepalese Army Directorate of Public Relations (DPR) said.
"The woman, a resident of Chatara VDC-4 in Bajura district, who was forced by the terrorists to undergo militia training and to use weapons, died while in training on December 25," said a press statement issued by the DPR on Thursday.
Likewise, an 11-year-old girl was injured when the Maoists detonated a bomb in the Rukumkot area in Rukum district on December 26. According to the DPR, the injured child Kiran KC was airlifted by the RNA to the district headquarters, Salle, for treatment.
The press release also stated that the so-called district president of the Maoists in Solukhumbu district surrendered to the security forces. Jagat Bahadur Basnet alias "Bikram" surrendered to the district administration on December 27.
It also stated that a local Maoist cadre Ramsharan Timilsina of Hanumanagar area in Parsa district and Chandra Bahadur Mukpai Magar of Kalika area in Dailekh district surrendered to the district administration in their respective places on December 26.

‘Underdevelopment behind Naxalite menace’

Statesman News Service
BERHAMPUR, Dec. 29. — The Naxalite problem has its links to the socio-economic underdevelopment of tribal areas, said the Union minister of state for home affairs, Mr Manikrao Gavit here today.
He said that the issue of tackling the Naxalites in the bordering areas of Orissa is the lookout of the state government and that the Centre can only provide help if the state government requires it.
Speaking to newsmen during his visit here today at the valedictory function of the annual conference of the All Orissa Lawyers’ Association, Mr Gavit related the Naxalite problem to the socio-economic backwardness prevailing in the remote areas of the state.
Addressing lawyers at the conference, Mr Gavit claimed himself to be a tribal and said he knew the real problems of the tribals. He said although Orissa is rich in its cultural heritage and mineral resources, it is still known to be a poor state. Mr Gavit said as the tribals in the state are still finding it hard to arrange for one square meal a day, the Naxalites are finding it easy to motivate the tribals to become a part of their violent ideology.
He urged the lawyers of the state to fight it out so that the poor and the and tribals of the state get their legitimate powers. He felt that laws related to the tribals need several changes.
Lawyers need to deliberate on such issues and suggest changes, he observed.
The Central minister criticised the state government for not providing matching grants for various developmental projects for tribals.
As per the minister of state for home affairs, the tribals of Orissa are facing atrocities at the hands of the land and jungle mafia, which is emerging into social tussles.

Indian police feud cripples terror hunt

BANGALORE, India, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- Long-standing rivalries in Bangalore's top police hierarchy have crippled the hunt for terrorists.

A long-running feud within the Karnataka state police bureaucracy over creating an independent internal security squad for information gathering and disseminating operation has resulted in police groping in dark, hours after terrorists attacked the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Wednesday, Newindpress.com reported Thursday.

The idea for a separate security force was mooted in 2003 when the state government decided to create a separate force that would act independently, the Web site said.

Many wings of the police department, including its Anti-Terrorist Cell, coastal security and internal security sections, drugs and narcotics, all terrorist activities and Naxalite guerilla movement activities were to be moved to the new department.

However, the proposal received a stiff resistance from top police officers. It was bounced back to the Home, or Interior, Ministry, with a request to exempt coastal security, anti-terrorist squad, internal security and drugs and narcotics from coming under the new structure.

Since then, the internal security wing has turned out to be another top-heavy wing, without any infrastructure.

"Hardly any professionalism is exhibited in handling the police force," one police source said, according to the report.

Congress won AP assembly polls with Naxal support: Advani

Mumbai | December 30, 2005 12:42:55 AM IST



Bharatiya Janata Party President L K Advani today alleged that the Congress had won the assembly elections in Andhra Pradesh in connivance with naxal groups and launched a broadside against the UPA Government for its ''failure to establish internal security in the nation''.

Addressing a public meeting at Shivaji Park as part of the ongoing silver jubilee convention of his party, Mr Advani, a former Deputy Prime Minister who also held the Home portfolio, blamed the ''faulty'' policies of the UPA regime for the deterioration of the internal security.

He alleged that in Andhra Pradesh, the Congress had lifted the ban on Naxal groups and even invited them for talks without asking them to surrender their arms.

Mr Advani said when the NDA was in power, Naxal menace was contained and the government had taken special steps to forge a co-ordinated effort by the Centre and state governments. A co-ordination committee, headed by the Union Home Secretary, was set up to monitor Naxal activities. But, the UPA Government declared that Naxal menace was a State subject and it was up to the affected states to decide how to handle it,'' he charged.

Similarly, in Assam, in view of the coming assembly elections, the Centre is inviting ULFA for talks. He said due to the massive infiltration from Bangladesh, the religious demography of the eastern parts of the country was changing.

Mr Advani also blamed the Centre for engaging Pakistan in bilateral talks when cross border terrorism and anti-India activities had increased in recent times. Referring to the shootout in Bangalore yesterday, Mr Advani said the incident had happened when the Centre had cautioned the Karnataka Government to take precautions as gangster Abu Salem was being taken to the IT city for a narco analysis test.

He said it was only the NDA government which had focussed on internal security and probity in bringing about good governance in the country. Mr Advani lamented that despite India having achieved independence over 50 years back, the people still considered themselves as belonging to an underdeveloped nation. It was the BJP which had instilled confidence in the minds of the people that they were capable of surging ahead and emerge as a developed nation.

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Sting-tainted MP summoned to Maoist 'court'

Thursday December 29 2005 15:55 IST

IANS

RANCHI: Maoists in Jharkhand have summoned a Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) MP - who was expelled from the Lok Sabha for involvement in the cash-for-queries scam - to a kangaroo court.

The Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) has threatened Manoj Kumar with "death penalty". Kumar represented Palamau in the Lok Sabha.

He was charged with taking Rs.150,000 to ask questions in parliament. Ten other MPs were also expelled this month in the same scam unearthed by a TV-website joint sting operation.

"Manoj Kumar is directed to appear in the Jan Adalat (People's Court). People of his constituency will decide what kind of punishment should be given to him," a poster pasted by the CPI-Maoist in parts of Palamau says.

"For this crime, Manoj deserves death penalty. This is the first time that a Palamau MP was expelled from Lok Sabha on bribery charges.

"Manoj Kumar has cheated people of his constituency for his own cause. He is an example of MPs who further their own interests and forget the interest of the people after reaching the parliament and assembly," the poster says.

In the past some politicians have been forcefully produced in the Jan Adalats of Maoists. Three years ago, a Jharkhand minister was held captive for six hours and produced in the Jan Adalat. He was released with a warning.

Maoist guerrillas are active in 16 of the state's 22 districts.

Naxalite violence, tribal movement dominate events in Chhattisgarh

Raipur | December 28, 2005 2:38:49 PM IST



Amid Chhattisgarh's continued struggle to raise the new state's visibility even in the fifth year after its formation , spurt in Naxalite violence, tribal uprising against left wing extremism, paddy and rice scams and expulsion of a BJP Member of Parliament for his involvement in 'cash for query scandal' dominated the events during the year in the state.

Unlike in neighbouring Madhya Pradesh, which witnessed three BJP chief ministers in 18 months, the political situation remained stable here as Chief Minister Raman Singh had a smooth sailing second year in office without any major onslaught either from the opposition Congress or from within his organisation.

''What's special in completing two years in office ? We feel satisfied only when we are able to able to fulfill the promises made to the people. We are working on a plan to be implemented during the next three years in a time bound manner for the state's development,'' Dr Singh said on December seven the day he completed two years in office.

Dr Singh effected a major reshuffle of his cabinet in mid June, divesting senior minister Brijmohan Agrawal of the home portfolio and handing over the home department to tribal leader Ram Vichar Netam.

While Mr Agrawal was entrusted with the revenue department, women and child welfare department minister Mrs Renuka Singh was removed from the ministry. A tribal leader from Bastar, Mrs Lata Usendi was inducted as minister of state for women and child development.

Though the political situation remained normal, the state drew attention for the wrong reasons, particularly increase in the activities of Naxalite outfit Communist Party of India (Maoist) mainly in tribal Bastar region, bordering Andhra Pradesh, and in Sarguja region neighbouring Jharkhand. As Naxalite groups are active in ten out of 16 districts, there were reports about left wing extremists penetrating into new areas in other districts.

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Anti-Terrorist Cell 'battles files, not terrorists'

Friday December 30 2005 00:00 IST

BANGALORE: The first ever terror strike in the City has come as a wake up call to the State Government to strengthen its Anti-Terrorist Cell (ATC), which now just handles government files, like any other department.

In the absence of its own men and logistical support, the cell headed by an officer of the rank of Inspector General of Police (IGP) is working as part of the State Police Intelligence Wing and does little to check terrorist activities in the state.

While the silicon valley of India has been pushed on to the terror map of the country quite sometime back, the Government is sitting on a proposal to strengthen the ATC on the lines of a similar set-up in Andhra Pradesh.

In AP, the cell has its own officers and men in all Naxal-prone districts to collect and analyze information about Naxal activities. The information is shared with the senior officer in-charge of `Greyhounds,' a special unit formed to check Naxal activities.

Ironically, in Karnataka the cell has just a few officers, that too only at the headquarters. They just handle files assigned to them by their senior officers in the intelligence wing. The cells do not have its men at district headquarters.

The proposal pending with the government suggests for deputing more number of officers to the cell and also providing it with logistic support so that it can operate efficiently to keep an eye on terrorist activities in the state.

The information collected from the cell can be passed on to the respective district police or Anti-Naxal Force, which will act on it. However, according to a senior police officer, collection and dissemination of information about the terrorist activities itself is a very important and tough task. “Sitting at the headquarters the officers of the cell are doing that important job,” the officer added.

He, however, admitted that the Wednesday's attack at IISc would certainly force the government to favourably consider the proposal to strengthen the ATC. Incidentally, the officers at the cell, like their counterparts in the police department were clueless about the attack and its chief was on leave.

RPF, Orissa, AP police to coordinate in naxal affected areas

Vizianagaram Andhra Pradesh | December 29, 2005 9:41:58 PM IST



Andhra Pradesh police would make a coordinated effort with Orissa police, Railway Protection Force and Greyhound force to check naxal related incidents in the agency areas of this district.

Superintendent of Police Bhavana Saxena told newspersons here today that different police forces would coordinate to tackle insurgency-related incidents. The agreement comes after an incident when Maoists gunned down four RPF policemen at Koneru Railway Station on AP Orissa border on Monday.

''We are obtaining clues on the attack. It was gathered that two Maoists were injured in the attack,'' she said.

On the grenade attack, which injured local Additional Public Prosecutor early this month, the SP said the grenade that was used did not belong to the State.

Police were ascertaining the location of the smuggled explosive, she added.

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Naxal killed, 2 CRPF men hurt in Bihar

PRESS TRUST OF INDIA

Posted online: Thursday, December 29, 2005 at 0151 hours IST


MOTIHARI, DEC 28: An activist of CPI (Maoist) was killed and two CRPF jawans were injured in an exchange of fire between crpf and Naxalites at Betawna Uttar tola in Bihar’s East Champaran district on Wednesday.

One Naxalite was also killed on the spot and the injured crpf men were admitted to the Sadar hospital here, sources said adding that a combing operation has been launched to track down the Naxalites.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Security beefed up for West Bengal CM's visit

Siliguri: Security has been tightened here on the eve of West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee's visit.

Additional forces from other districts and also of the State Armed Police (SAP) were deployed.

Checking and night patrolling have also been intensified.

Reports of a failed suspected Naxalite ambush attempt on the Chief Minister's convoy on the Baraka-Raghunathpur Road on Sunday prompted the security forces to tae the measures

AP may seek army help to counter Maoist menace

Visakhapatnam: With the incidents of Maoist induced violence on the rise, the Andhra Pradesh government is contemplating to seek the help of the army to counter the naxal menace, Home Minister K Jana Reddy announced here today.

Addressing a press conference after inaugurating the Regional Forensic Science Laboratory here, he said the state government had not abandoned the idea of holding a second round of talks with the insurgents.

Quoting examples of LTTE and Naga insurgents, he said those extremist groups were inclined to have a dialogue with their respective governments in order to find a peaceful solution.

''The Maoists should also do the same'', he said.

Asked about the recent attacks by Maoists he said the Government wanted to strengthen police stations wherever necessary by imparting training in the use of sophisticated weapons and providing modern weaponry to the police force.

He strongly criticised the Maoists for indulging in heinous acts like killing innocent people.

Asked if the intelligence units had failed in monitoring the movements of Maoists at Seluru and Kuneru, he said the incidents took place instantaneously without the knowledge of the police.

He said countries like Italy and UK had been utilising the expertise of AP Forensic Science Laboratory. As part of strengthening the police investigation system, the Government would set up three more Laboratories in the State apart from the present six

Woman naxal shot dead in encounter

Guntur: A woman naxal was killed in exchange of fire between the police and the outlawed CPI (Maoists) near Sirigiripadu village in Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh today, according to the police.

Police said, a gun, a granide and a kit bag were recovered from the scene of the encounter.

The encounter ensued when a police party combing the forest area, a strong hold of the naxals, spotted a group of Maoists. When they were asked to surrender, the extremists opened fire, the police returned the fire in which the woman naxal was killed.

The others managed to escape into the forests, police added.

Bomb Scare at Petrol Bunk - Claim of a Naxalite Threat

News -- Mysore: Bomb Scare at Petrol Bunk - Claim of a Naxalite Threat



By reciprocal arrangement with Star of Mysore

Mysore, Dec 27 : An anonymous letter in the name of Naxalites, threatening to blow up a petrol bunk in city on the New Year's eve, has caused a flutter not only for the bunk owner, but also among the residents and the Police Department.

It is reported that the inland letter received by Vijaya Service Station on Dhanvanthri Road from the postman on Wednesday December 21 had the following message written in English, "Ningal petrol bunk blasting new year day night: Naxal."

The bunk owner Babu took it to the Devaraja Police Station and lodged a complaint.

The Police could not read the postal seal of the place from where the letter had been posted. The bunk owner too could not name any person as suspect behind the threat.

Babu told Star of Mysore yesterday (December 26), that he felt it was just a mischief by some persons in the name of Naxalites. Yet, he took the matter seriously.

Meanwhile, the Police Control Room is said to have received a telephone call from a public phone booth in Dhanvanthri Road yesterday morning, threatening to blow up a petrol bunk on Dhanvantri Road. But the anonymous caller is said to have not named the bunk.

"Opposite the Vijay Service Station on Dhanvantri Road in the Ganesh Petrol Bunk," said Police Inspector Ramachandraiah and added that as pre-cautionary measures, Bomb Squad and Task Force will be deployed at the bunks on Dec. 31 and Jan. 1.

Naxals vowed to intensify struggle for people’s rule

Ultras
Tuesday December 27 2005 11:32 IST

MALKANGIRI: Only a day before the mayhem in the train to Rayagada, the CPI (Maoist), in a release to this website’s newspaper, had stated that it would intensify struggle against Naveen Patnaik and YSR governments for their anti-people policy.

Andhra-Orissa Border Special Zonal Committee Secretary of Maoists Bhaskar said the armed fight would continue till the establishment of people’s rule in Dandakaranya area.

The Maoists reinforced the pledge at the party’s ongoing silver jubilee celebration of Dandakaranya movement and formation of the committee. The celebration that started on December 24 would continue until 31.

The Naxal movement had begun from East Godavari of AP in 1980. Since the formation of the committee, a series of attacks were made on police camps and stations and hundreds of arms and ammunition looted, the release said.

Claiming to have the support of public, students and intelligentsia, the Maoist leader said in the release that a series of meetings would be organised in villages in the border area to mark the silver jubilee.

Demanding forest right to the tribals, Bhaskar reiterated that the movement was aimed at protecting tribal language and their rich culture. The police were allegedly harassing and arresting tribals for no reason, he said.

Police bust Naxal meet, kill four

Jaideep Hardikar
Tuesday, December 27, 2005 00:27 IST


NAGPUR: At least four Naxalites were reportedly killed in a major offensive planned by police on a naxal-den in remote Gyarabatti area of north Gadchiroli on Monday morning. Two policemen were also killed and as many injured when the members of the armed Platoon Dalam fired in retaliation. The operation was launched in the wee hours, but the actual confrontation took place around 7.15 am, according to the Gadchiroli police.

The Naxalites retaliated with Light Mortar Guns and rifles from the top of the hills killing on the spot two policemen - Avinash Ranadive and Birsa Atram - down at the foothill. Two others - Prakash Rathod and Vinod Bulle - who sustained wounds are out of danger. They have been admitted to the district government hospital and are recuperating fast.

Anti-Naxal Operation chief Pankaj Gupta told DNA from Gadchiroli that at least 140 naxalites of three to four splinter groups had converged on the Tipagarh hills, deep in the forests of the district under Purada police precincts, for a conclave to plan something big when the police launched an attack.

“We had surrounded them from three sides at the foothill, while the fourth side has a lake,” he informed. The operation, expected to continue for a few more days, was launched in the wee hours, Gupta added.

Three police parties were involved in the operation, according to Shirish Jain, the district superintendent of police. Jain claimed that it was a “big success” given the kind of terrain it was. He said the naxalite groups had managed to drag back their dead taking advantage of thick forest cover.

Gupta said that apart from the armed Platoon dalam, the members of Tipagarh and Khobramendha dalams were also present on the hills. “We are following them,” he said, confirming that the operation “is still on”.

In all, at least 15 Naxal splinter groups are active in Gadchiroli, with at least 20 declared members and tens of sympathisers and supporters. The Platoon dalam is the most ferocious of all, trained in the use of LMGs and other sophisticated weapons. And, the focus of the naxal groups has shifted to North of Gadchiroli from the south in this past year or so.

After the merger of the Maoists with the People’s War, the new CPI (ML) has grown in strength, according to analysts. The state’s policy for the Naxals willing to give up arms has yielded little success.Gupta informed that the police parties have found lot of blood on the hills after the operation, which indicates that a few Naxalites may also have been injured. The police are also trying to ascertain the motive of the Naxal groups behind this meeting, though they believe that the Naxals might have been formulating the plans for their training camps

Security forces may use mortars against naxals in AP

Visakhapatnam | December 27, 2005 12:39:51 AM IST



Following stepped up Maoist attacks in the North Coastal Andhra pradesh police have decided take up extensive combing operations in the naxal affected agency areas in the districts of Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram and Srikakulam and use mortars in their operations, a top police official today said.

He said the police had declared a red alert in the entire three districts, with special concentration on the agency areas.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, he said the top brass in Hyderabad had asked the Superintendents of Police in the three districts to change their strategy and instructed them to step up the combing operations further and use mortars against the rampaging insurgents.

Anti-insurgent crack forces like Grey Hounds and Special Police Parties involved in the combing operations would deal with them with an iron hand and the required weaponry and ammunition would be rushed to all Maoist infested areas on a war footing.

''Since the Maoists have started looting the public money and are being ruthless not hesitating to kill the personnel on duty, police will also change their plan of action. Our aim is not to create any problem to the civilians in agency areas. We will retaliate in a fitting manner,'' he claimed.

According to reports the Maoist hierarchy had allegedly asked their district commanders to attack and loot money from police and government officials in this region.

This instruction is said to have emanated from the higher ups in Andhra-Orissa Border Special Zonal Committee (AOBSZE) headquartered in the jungles of Rayagada in Orissa.

The Maoists have already stepped up their attacks. They struck at Visakhapatnam and Vizianagaram districts during the last two days when a nearly 100 strong cadre tried to attack Sileru police station on Andhra-Orissa border in this district only to be repulsed from a strong posse of police and CRPF men on Saturday.

In the second incident yesterday, they shot dead four Railway Protection Force policemen who were travelling in Visakhapatnam-Rayagada Passenger at Kuneru Railway Station bordering Orissa in Vizianagaram district and looted Rs 12 lakh meant to be disbursed to railway ministerial staff in the East-Coast Division and also took away arms and ammunition from them.

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Monday, December 26, 2005

Five Maoist guerillas surrender in Bihar

Anand Mohan Sahay in Patna | December 26, 2005 13:43 IST



Five Maoist guerillas have surrendered before the police in Pipra, Patna district on Monday.

Police officials said the surrendered Maoists included an area commander of the banned organisation, Communist Party of India (Maoist) and some others figured in the state list of 'hardcore Maoists'.

According to the police, the five guerillas said that they would like to return to a normal life in mainstream society. The surrender comes after a special task force assured them that the government will conduct a rehabilitation programme for them.

The rehabilitation programme will be initiated soon after the legal formalities are completed. Last week, 17 Maoist guerillas surrendered in Muzaffarpur district.

Naxal commander killed in encounter

Monday December 26 2005 09:28 IST

WARANGAL: One Naxalite of the Praja Prathighatana group (PPG) was killed in an ‘encounter’ while a sarpanch fell victim to Maoists in the district during the last 24 hours.

According to police, the encounter took place on the outskirts of Kesamudram mandal headquarters in which PPG commander Ramesh Reddy was killed. Police began combing the area on information that Naxalites were moving in the area and extorting money from contractors. Suspecting one person riding a motorcycle, police stopped him at a check post but he sped away in a different direction.

Further, he tried to open fire at the police from a distance which was retaliated, Mahabubabad DSP K Satyanarayana has said. Police recovered a revolver from the slain Naxalite.

Meanwhile, thirty five-year-old Eeka Bhaskar, sarpanch of Oorattam in Mulug revenue division, was killed by Maoists branding him police informer on Saturday night.

In a note left beside the body, Naxalite commander Damodar and member Naresh stated that they killed the sarpanch as he had been creating obstacles to their movement. The deceased was a police constable before joining the village politics, five years ago.

YEAR END REVIEW - MINISTRY OF HOME AFFAIRS

POLICIES, PROGRAMMES AND ACHIEVEMENTS DURING 2005
18:12 IST

Year End Review 2005

Disaster Management Bill, 2005:



The orientation of disaster management policy in India has been changed from a relief centric approach to a holistic multi-disciplinary and multi-sectoral approach, encompassing all the elements of disaster management i.e. prevention, mitigation preparedness, response, relief and rehabilitation. The approach emanates from the conviction that development can not be sustained unless disaster mitigation and preparedness are built into the developmental process. Disaster Management Bill envisaging this approach was introduced in the Parliament and passed by the Parliament in December 2005.

The salient features of the Bill include setting up of a National Disaster Management Authority under the Chairmanship of the Prime Minister; State Disaster Management Authorities in the States/Union Territories under the chairmanship of Chief Minister or Lt. Governor or Administrator, as the case may be; and the District Disaster Management Authority under the District Magistrate in each district.

The Bill also seeks to constitute a National Institute of Disaster Management which shall plan and promote training and research, documentation and development of national level information base relating to disaster management policies, prevention mechanism and mitigation measures. A National Disaster Response Force shall also be constituted for specialist response. The Bill seeks to constitute Disaster Response Fund and Disaster Mitigation Fund at the National, State and District level.

Keeping in view the federal polity, the Bill has been enacted under the Entry ‘Social Security and Social Insurance’ in the Concurrent List of the Constitution of India since it will have the advantage to allow the State Governments also to have their own legislation.


The Government has constituted National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) consisting of 8 battalions of Central Para-Military Forces - two battalions each from the Border Security Force (BSF), Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) for the purpose of specialist response in disaster situations. The process of the training and equipping of battalions is in progress.


These battalions would be positioned at Arrakonam(Chennai), Mundali(Bhubneshwar), Greater Noida, Chandigarh, Barasat(Kolkata), Guwahati(Assam), Pune(Maharashtra) and Gandhinagar(Gujarat). In addition, 16 Regional Response Centres (RRCs) of NDRF battalions are being set up across the country to enable immediate response to natural calamities.

Rajiv Gandhi Rehabilitation Package for Tsunami affected areas: The Government of India approved a Special Package of Rs. 3644.05 crore named as “Rajiv Gandhi Rehabilitation Package for Tsunami affected areas” to provide assistance for immediate relief and response, revival of fishery and agriculture sectors; immediate construction of temporary (intermediate) shelters and repair/restoration of infrastructure.

The Empowered Group of Ministers (EGOM) has approved the Tsunami Rehabilitation Programme at an estimated cost of Rs.9870.25 crore comprising Rs. 3344.13 crore through external agencies (World Bank, ADB, and IFAD)., Rs.1607.01 crore under the Rajiv Gandhi package and balance of Rs. 4641.11 crore as additional budgetary support.


Integrated Operations Centre (IOC) in the Ministry of Home Affairs: The Home Minister inaugurated the Integrated Operations Centre (IOC) on 30th March, 2005. The Centre will provide the latest communications facilities to the Ministry for monitoring and directing officials throughout the country during times of crisis. The IOC has an Operations Room, 2 Control Rooms (Internal Security and Disaster Management) and a communications room with state of art equipment and essential accessories.

Situation in Jammu & Kashmir:

Overall security scenario has improved significantly. The lower level of violence has resulted in revival of tourism giving a major boost to the economy.

The data available from the State show that the number of cases of human rights violation in Jammu & Kashmir have substantially come down in recent times. The forces of all ranks were sensitized about the sanctity of Human Rights and any alleged violation was treated with the utmost gravity. The Home Secretary suggested that all cases of Human Rights violations should be investigated within a time frame of 90 days. Home Secretary directed that handy cards containing the Do’s and Don’ts should be prepared and distributed and Citizen centric Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) prepared.

The bus service from Srinagar to Muzaffarabad started as scheduled on April 7, 2005 despite threats from militants. The second bus schedule was also maintained from both sides on April 21, 2005 without any trouble.

Government has mobilized massive relief for the people affected by the Earth Quake in Jammu and Kashmir. The Earthquake had claimed 1336 lives in the State and destroyed thousands of houses. The Ministry of Home Affairs coordinated the rehabilitation efforts, provided temporary shelters in the form of tents, pre-fab material, food and medical aid etc.

Naxalism:

The Government is of the view that the naxal problem should be tackled in a dynamic and holistic manner. Chief Ministers’ conference on Naxalism was held in New Delhi on 19.09.2005 to discuss the strategy to counter the challenge posed by naxalism.

The Government has comprehensively revised the Security-Related Expenditure Scheme for Naxal affected areas to make it more beneficial to the affected States. A Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) has been finalized in consultation with the Naxal-affected States with an objective to formulate operational plans and undertake intelligence based inter-State joint anti-naxalite operations in the specified inter-State border areas against naxal leaders and cadres. Each of the inter-State border areas identified will have a separate inter-State task force/mechanism on a bilateral or trilateral basis to facilitate need-based intelligence driven joint operations. The naxal affected States have been requested to take concrete steps to raise India Reserve (IR) Battalions on priority. The time frame prescribed for raising the IR Battalions ns is two years. The Coordination Centre headed by the Union Home Secretary constantly reviews review and coordinate the steps being taken by the naxal affected States to effectively counter the menace of naxalism.

Situation in North East:

The overall security situation in North-East has shown signs of improvements not only in terms of declining levels of violence but also through public revulsion against mindless acts of terrorism. There have been instances of public protests against high-handedness by militant cadres and people are now forthcoming to speak against the militants.

The situation in Karbi Anglong district of Assam is fast returning to normalcy after the ethnic strife in the district started on 26.09.2005. Aggressive patrolling by the Security Forces is on in the area. State Government has ordered a judicial inquiry into the clashes.

All Naga Students Association of Manipur (ANSAM) had started economic blockade in Manipur, with effect, from 19/20 June 2005 against the declaration of the 21st June as Integrity Day by the State Government. The blockade was lifted on 11th August 2005. State Governments of Manipur, Nagaland and Assam were asked to cooperate with each other and see that essential commodities were allowed to be transported to Imphal and other places without any obstruction. Sustained offensive operations have been conducted in the three Southern districts of Manipur and the writ of the civil administration restored in most part of the State.

In Tripura, due to the sustained pressure by the Security Forces, the violence has decreased by 45% and a large number of NLFT(B) and ATTF cadres have surrendered in 2005. Consequent to the improvement in security situation, a number of development projects have been launched.

Government is willing to talk to any group that abjures the path of violence and seeks resolution of their grievances within the framework of Indian Constitution. The existing ceasefire/suspension of operations with NSCN(IM), NSCN(K), UPDS, DHD and ANVC have been renewed. A fresh suspension of operations agreement has been signed with NDFB on 1st June 2005. The People Consultative Group (PCG) constituted by ULFA held talks with the Government representative on 26th October 2005. Peace dialogue is in progress with NSCN(IM). The latest round of talks was held in Bangkok on December 17-18, 2005.

Police Reforms:

A committee has been constituted under the Chairmanship of former Attorney General Shri Soli Sorabjee to draft a new Police Act to replace the Police Act of 1861. This committee (Constituted in September 2005) has been given a time period of six months to prepare the draft of the new Police Act in view of the changing role/responsibility of Police and the challenges before it especially on account of the growth & spread of insurgency, militancy, naxalism etc.

National Conference of Superintendents of Police: First ever National Conference of Superintendents of Police was organized on 1st September 2005. About 400 district Superintendents of Police from all over the country participate in this unique exercise.

Conference of DGPs/IGPs: Three-day conference of the DGPs/IGPs was organized in New Delhi in October 2005 to discuss the issues pertaining to national security, left wing extremism – emerging dimensions, disaster management, threat from Bangladesh & Nepal, VIP security, cyber security, counterfeiting, crime against women & children, human trafficking, criminal intelligence and Right to Information Act. The conference provided a forum to discuss various problems being faced by the police in their day-to-day functioning and work out solutions to such problems by exchange of ideas and sharing of experience, making the police more effective, efficient and people-friendly.

The Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill: The Parliament has passed this Criminal Law (Amendment) bill in this winter session, 2005. It provides for ‘Plea bargaining’ and aims at ensuring relief to victims through compensation besides reducing delays of cases through early disposal.

The State Emblem of India (Prohibition of improper use) Bill, 2004: The Parliament has passed this bill, which is a self-contained legislation regulating the use of the State Emblem.

The Prevention of Insult to National Honour (Amendment) Bill, 2005: This bill was passed by the Parliament in the winter session 2005.

Law on Communal Violence:

The communal violence (Prevention, Control & Rehabilitation of victims) Bill, 2005 has been introduced in Rajya Sabha and has been referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee. This comprehensive bill incorporates measures for prevention of acts leading to communal violence, enhanced punishments for communal violence and certain other offences, speedy investigation and trial of offences through special courts and institutional arrangements for relief, rehabilitation and compensation. The country witnessed one major incident of communal violence this year in Mau and thereafter in Ghazipur in Uttar Pradesh.

The Foreign Contribution (Management and Control) Bill, 2005: The draft Bill named ‘Foreign Contribution (Management and Control) Bill, 2005’, has been referred to the Group of Ministers by the Cabinet. The Government is also considering certain changes in the law governing the receipt and utilization of foreign contribution by voluntary organizations to remove shortcomings noticed in the present law.

First meeting of the reconstituted National Integration Council: The first meeting of the reconstituted National Integration Council (NIC) was held in New Delhi on 31st August 2005. The Agenda set out for the deliberations was “Communal Harmony through Governmental Action, Education and Media’”. The Council last met in 1992. It was reconstituted in fulfillment of the commitment made in the Common Minimum Programme of the United Progressive Alliance Government. The National Integration Council headed by the Prime Minister has 141 members comprising Union Ministers, Chief Ministers of all Sates and Union Territories which have legislatures, leaders of national political parties and regional political parties, chairpersons of National Commissions, eminent public figures and representatives drawn from business, labour, media and women.


Inter State Council meeting: The Ninth meeting of the Inter-State Council was held in New Delhi on 28th June 2005 to discuss the “Blue print of Action Plan on Good Governance" and "Disaster Management – Preparedness of States to cope with Disasters”.

Commission on Centre-State relations: The Government has decided to set up a Commission on Centre-State relations. The task of finalizing its terms of reference was entrusted to a Group of Ministers, which met recently for this purpose. The proposed Commission shall consist of a Chairman, who may be a retired Chief Justice of India or a Judge of the Supreme Court, and four full time Members. The tenure of the Commission will be for two years.

Scope of Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) scheme extended:

Citizenship Act, 1955 has been amended to extend the scope of OCI to Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs) of all nationalities other than Pakistan and Bangladesh that allow dual citizenship under their local laws in some form or the other. Citizenship Rules, 1956 has been amended to simplify the procedure and application form for grant of OCI registration. Necessary amendments have also been carried out in the Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920 and Registration of Foreigners Act, 1939. Arrangements have also been made for online submission of applications for grant of OCI through the website of the Ministry of Home Affairs. This scheme has been made operational since 02.12.2005. The amendment further reduces the period of stay of two years to one year in India for OCI, who is registered for five years, to become eligible for grant of Indian citizenship.

Medical VISA for foreigners: The Government of India has decided to introduce Medical Visa to the foreigners who come for the medical treatment and are required to live in India for extended period. The Medical Visa would be admissible to all foreigners seeking medical attendance in reputed/recognized specialized hospitals/treatment centres in the country. The initial period of such a visa would be for one year or for the period of treatment whichever is less. Unlike tourist visa, medical visa is extendable. The State Governments/FRROs have been delegated powers to extend such visa. The key feature of this visa is that it will be available to all the foreign nationals including nationals of China, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

Bilateral Agreements:

India-Pakistan Home Secretary level talks: To take the Confidence Building measures further, Home Secretary level talks were held between India and Pakistan in New Delhi on August 29-30. In these talks, it was agreed to provide consular access to all persons within three months of arrest and release prisoners immediately after completion of sentence and nationality verification. Subsequently, India released 97 Pak civil prisoners and 51 Pak fishermen on 12th September, 2005 and 26 more Pak civil prisoners on 18th November 2005 across the Wagah Border. Pakistan also repatriated 371 Indian fishermen and 64 Indian prisoners lodged in various jails of Pakistan.

India-Bangladesh Home Secretary Level Talks: The Home Secretary - level talks between Bangladesh and India were held in New Delhi from October 27th-28th, 2005. Both sides approached all issues on the basis of mutual understanding and appreciation of each other’s position and sensitivities, on the basis of reciprocity and mutual confidence. Both sides agreed to work on security related issues closely and agreed to provide consular access to the insurgents/ criminals arrested by either side and to share information about activities of insurgents.

Measures to Curb the Problem of illegal immigration: Government has taken a series of measures to curb the problem of infiltration of Bangladeshi nationals into India. These include raising of additional Battalions of Border Security Force, reduction of gap between the border outposts, intensification of patrolling both on the land and the riverine border, accelerated programme of construction of border roads and fencing, increase in the number of outposts, provision of modern surveillance equipment etc. The Government is also considering the recommendations of the ‘Group of Ministers’ on ‘Reforming the National Security System. This report recommends recommended introduction of a scheme for issuing ‘Work Permit to Foreigners’ as a measure to curb illegal migration and to begin this with Bangladesh and Myanmar nationals.

India-China Sign MoU to enhance mutual co-operation in combating Terrorism: During the five-day visit of Union Home Minister Shri Shivraj Patil to Beijing from 8th September 2005, both the sides agreed to enhance cooperation in sharing information and experiences to combat international terrorism.

India-USA sign Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty: The Union Home Secretary, Shri V. K. Duggal and the US Ambassador in New Delhi, Dr. David C. Mulford signed the Protocol of Exchange of the Instrument of Ratification concerning Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty in criminal matter between the Government of the Republic of India and the Government of the United States of America. The Treaty will enhance the ability of the two countries to pursue their common objective of law enforcement of putting in place a legal mechanism to enable them to provide to each other assistance in connection with the investigation, prosecution, prevention and suppression of crime including those relating to terrorism, narcotics, trafficking, economic and organized crime.

India-UK sign agreement on the transfer of sentenced persons: India and United Kingdom have signed an agreement on 18th February 2005 on the transfer of sentenced persons. The two countries also renewed an MOU regarding verification and return of illegal Indian migrants in the UK.

India-Myanmar agreement: India and Myanmar have agreed to hold joint interrogation of persons arrested for drugs/arms smuggling and for insurgency related activities. This agreement followed the eleventh national level meeting between the Home Secretaries of India and Myanmar in Yangon from 13th-17th October 2005.

India and Cambodia sign agreement: India and Cambodia have signed agreement to enhance cooperation in combating trafficking of drugs & arms, terrorism and transnational crime. The Secretary of State in the Ministry of Interior, Royal Government of Kingdom of Cambodia, Shri Em Sam An and the Minister of State in the Ministry of Home Affairs, Shri S. Regupathy signed this agreement in New Delhi in December 2005.

RK

Two cops killed in encounter with naxalites

Nagpur | December 26, 2005 7:42:43 PM IST



Two constables were killed and two others injured in an encounter with naxalites hiding in a forest at Gyarapatti-Kotgul in Dhanora division of naxal-infested Gadchiroli district early this morning.

According to police, while some constables were patrolling in the forest at around 0500 hrs, a group of naxalites suddenly opened fire.

Two constables were killed while two others sustained injuries in the attack.

The police patrol also returned fire, but the naxalites fled away in the darkness and cover of fog.

The deceased have been identified as - Birsay Gulabarao Atram and Avinash Shyamrao Randive.

Superintendent of Police (SP) Sirish Jain rushed to the spot to take stock of the situation.

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‘Police ready to deal with Naxalites’

Monday December 26 2005 09:16 IST

NALGONDA: The police department is ready to deal with Naxal activities, Minister for Home K Jana Reddy has said.

He was here to participate in several programmes on Sunday.

He condemned the attack on the Sileru police station and stressed the need for people to get motivated against Naxal violence. He urged the people to cooperate with the police officials in checking the increasing Naxal violence.

The higher officials had issued orders for filling up 2000 vacant posts in the State according to GO No. 610, he said.

ABVP criticises Centre, AP Govt on naxal violence

Rajahmundry | December 26, 2005 2:39:38 PM IST



Akhila Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) Organising Secretary P Chandrasekhar today criticised the Centre and Andhra Pradesh Government for escalation of naxal violence in the country.

Addressing newspersons here, Mr Chandrasekhar, while referring to the Maoist mayhem in Vizianagaram and Visakhapatnam districts alleged that Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy initially lifted the ban on the naxals and subsequently clamped on them.

Mr Chandrasekhar said Dr Reddy was following in the footsteps of TDP supremo Chandrababu Naidu in allowing corporate colleges to fleece the students.

He said a two-day 25th State Conference of ABVP, would be held here from January seven.

He said ABVP was spearheading successful movements on various students issues in Sri Venkateswara University and Nagarjuna University, but feared retaliation from naxals.

He said ABVP All India President Dr Kailash Sarma, BJP Vice- President M Venkaiah Naidu and Andhra University Vice-Chancellor Prof G Venugopal Reddy would attend the meet.

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Police intensifies NAXAL combing operations in AP

Hyderabad | December 26, 2005 12:38:59 AM IST



Police today intensified combing operation in Coastal Andhra in the wake of CPI (Maoist) naxal attack on Sileru police station in Visakhapatnam district last night.

Speaking to newsmen here, Director General of Police (DGP) Swaranjeet Sen said special police parties were being sent to the naxal-infested areas.

Stating that the naxal attack on a police station was a bad incident, he said the stations would be guarded with additional police personnel.

Meanwhile, state Home Minister K Jana Reddy told newsmen at Nalgonda that the police had foiled the naxal attack on the police station by not letting them enter the station. He said the police would take stringent steps to prevent such activities in future.

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Sunday, December 25, 2005

Naxalites killed 3 Railway Protection Force (RPF) personnel , broad daylight attack

Three RPF personnel killed, four injured in Naxalite attack
Bhubaneswar | December 25, 2005 10:42:14 PM IST

In a broad daylight attack suspected naxalites today shot dead three Railway Protection Force (RPF) personnel, injured four others and looted huge cash meant for payment to the wayside railway station staff near Kuneru Railway station, about 34 kms from Rayagada railway station East Coast Railway (ECoR) sources here quoting the information of pay clerk E.Shankar Rao said the armed naxalites asked the RPF party carrying the cash to handover them as the Visakhapatnam-Rayagada passenger train approached the Koneru station.

When the RPF resisted the attempt of the naxalites to snatch the money, the suspected naxalites opened fire killing head constable P.V.Rao, constable D.Sri Ramlu and J.Raja Rao on the spot and snatched away the cash, six rifles and two revolvers from their possession.

Four other RPF personnel, including an Assistant Sub-Inspector, were also injured in the attack and admitted to the Paravatipuram Hospital from where they were later shifted to Visakhapatanam as their condition deteriorated.

The ECoR sources said the pay clerk was carrying Rs 25 lakhs cash for distribution of salary to the staff members posted at the wayside station.It was not immediately known as to how much cash had been distributed before the naxalites attacked the RPF party.

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Asian Age

Hyderabad, Dec. 25: Suspected Naxalites killed three constables of the Railway Protection Force who were travelling in a passenger train and allegedly took away a cash box which the RPF men were carrying after an exchange of fire at Koneru railway station on the Andhra-Orissa border on Sunday, the police said.

A group of armed Maoists stormed a compartment of the Vijayawada-Raigarh passenger train in which RPF personnel were travelling with a cash box containing the salary of Raigarh staff, the superintendent of police of Vizianagaram, Ms Bhavana Saxena, said. When the passenger train reached the station at around 11 am, the Maoists made their way into the compartment and in the exchange of fire that followed three policemen were killed and six others injured, she said. According to reports, the cash box may have contained Rs 50 lakhs, but this could not be confirmed. The SP, Ms Saxena, only said that the attackers had "taken away some cash," without mentioning the amount. There were some civilians among the six injured, she said, adding that all the injured had been hospitalised.

Koneru railway station is in Vizianagaram district, close to the Dandakaranya forest area which runs across Andhra Pradesh and Orissa and has been a hotbed of Naxalite activity for a long time.

Maoist rebels had earlier set off an explosion at a government guest house with detonators and had attacked Sileru police station using rocket launchers on Saturday night in the neighbouring district of Visakhapatnam, the police said

Naxal killed in encounter

Warangal Andhra Pradesh | December 25, 2005 10:42:58 PM IST



A Pratighatana naxal was killed in an encounter near Baruwada village of Keshasamudram mandal of this district today.

Police said a special combing party was fired upon by the naxals forcing them to retaliate. In the encounter, Mahaboobabad Mandal Area Dalam Commander Ramesh alias Sagarin was killed.

The police recovered a revolver from the scene. One more naxal managed to flee from the spot.

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