Wednesday, May 05, 2021

Landmine Planted By Maoists Defused By Security Forces After Controlled Blast

Loading video

Narrow escape for security forces from the deadly explosives laid by the Naxals. Security forces were able to foil the Naxal plot after detecting a powerful landmine. The explosive was planted in Minapa jungle in Chhattisgarh bordering on Odisha’s Malkangiri district. According to reports, the landmine was around 10 kgs in weight and was detected during an operation by CRPF. The landmine was detected through a metal detector. The landmine was then retrieved by the security personnel. Later it was defused by triggering a controlled-blast and a major disaster was averted. It is reported that the police & security forces had information about Maoist movement in the area. Following this an operation was launched in the area during which the explosives were detected

Five Maoists nabbed in Telangana

Special CorrespondentBHADRADRI-KOTHAGUDEM 05 MAY 2021 08:01 IST
UPDATED: 05 MAY 2021 08:16 IST

Five militia members of the proscribed CPI (Maoist) from neighbouring Chhattisgarh were arrested by a combined squad of police and CRPF personnel in Kurnapalli forest area in Charla mandal on Tuesday morning.

Police said the arrested militia members were tasked by Maoists to conduct a recce on the movement of combing parties in remote forest fringe villages across the Telangana-Chhattisgarh border.

They hail from Nimmalagudem village in Chhattisgarh’s Sukma district.



They were allegedly involved in subversive activities along with local militia members of the outlawed organisation in the border villages including Chennapuram and Battigudem

Saturday, May 01, 2021

Elgar Parishad-Maoist link case | NIA disputes U.S. firm’s report

A view of National Investigation Agency (NIA), in New Delhi. FileA view of National Investigation Agency (NIA), in New Delhi. File | Photo Credit: Sushil Kumar Verma
PTIMUMBAI 01 MAY 2021 17:30 IST
UPDATED: 01 MAY 2021 17:34 IST

It says the U.S. firm had no business giving such an opinion without the permission of the court at a time when the trial was pending and the issue was sub-juice.

The National Investigation Agency has disputed a forensic report by a U.S. firm which suggested that electronic evidence was planted on the computer device belonging to activist Rona Wilson, an accused in the Elgar Parishad-Maoist links case.

In an affidavit filed before the Bombay High Court on Friday, the NIA said it "stoutly" denied the contents of the U.S. firm's report, adding that Mr. Wilson's allegations of fabrication of evidence and planting of electronic evidence could not be accepted.

The central agency said Mr. Wilson's plea based on the U.S. firm's report was not maintainable, and urged the High Court to dismiss it as well as impose cost on the activist for filing such a plea.


In an affidavit filed through its officer Vikram Jhakate, the NIA said, "I stoutly deny the report. I say since the contention made in the petition regarding the aforesaid facts are not admitted by me, they are disputed questions of fact and hence cannot be entertained in the present writ petition," the affidavit reads.

The NIA further said the firm's report and a news story carried in a magazine were not part of the chargesheet, and Mr. Wilson could not rely on them to seek quashing of charges.


It further said that since the U.S. firm's report itself claimed it was difficult to identify the person who allegedly planted such evidence, it was on Mr. Wilson to prove allegations of fabrication of evidence at the time of trial.

The NIA said the onus of explaining and identifying when and how evidence was planted was on Mr. Wilson himself since the alleged planting of electronic evidence took place before the FIR in the case was registered.

"As far as the contention of the petitioner that there is fabrication of documents, planting of false evidence and scant regards to procedure established by law is concerned, the same is uncalled for at this stage," the affidavit stated.

It said Mr. Wilson's plea was vague and based on "ifs and buts" and he himself was not sure of the person who allegedly planted the document.

The NIA said Mr. Wilson had an alternate remedy of filing an application for discharge under Section 227 or 239 of the Code of Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC).

It also said the U.S. firm had no business giving such an opinion without the permission of the court at a time when the trial was pending and the issue was sub-juice.

The central agency also said the purpose of Mr. Wilson's plea was to delay the trial.

Mr. Wilson approached High Court earlier this year seeking quashing of charges as well as directions to appoint a Special Investigation Team, headed by a retired Supreme Court or High Court judge and consisting of digital forensic analysis experts, to probe the planting of documents on his computer by using malware

Maoists blow up portion of Howrah-Mumbai rail track in Jharkhand

About a meter of the railway track on the Howrah-Mumbai main line was blown away in Jharkhand early on Monday by suspected Maoists, who gave a call for Bharat Bandh on April 26 in support of farmers protests against the three Central farm laws
UPDATED ON APR 26, 2021 01:06 PM IST

Jharkhand: Several mail,express and passenger trains were held up after the blast was detected.

About a meter of the railway track on the Howrah-Mumbai main line was blown away in Jharkhand early on Monday by suspected Maoists, who gave a call for Bharat Bandh on April 26 in support of farmers protests against the three Central farm laws. The traffic on the section under Chakradharpur division of South Eastern Railway (SER) in West Singhbhum district was suspended for hours following the blast, said railway officials.

A senior railway official indicated that a goods train passing through the damaged section between Lotapahar and Sonua stations alerted the authorities and reported a “heavy jerk”, which led to at least 8 mail/express/passenger trains being stopped at different stations to prevent any untoward incident.

“On receiving information, all movement in the Rourkela-Chakradharpur section was immediately stopped and 8 mail express/passengers trains and several goods trains were controlled at different stations as security measures,” Manish Kumar Pathak, senior divisional commercial manager (Sr DCM), Chakradharpur division of SER, said Monday morning.

He said patrolling teams accompanied by security personnel were sent to the blast site first and it started investigating the ‘heavy jerk’ reported by the goods train loco driver after arriving at the site

How to end Maoist violence

Maoists would like the state to respond from a security rather than developmental perspective, as they know that only in poverty can they sustain a captive support base.

Maoists, Naxalism
A national policy to end Naxalist violence has to emanate out of economic, developmental and internal security considerations. (Representational Photo/PTI)

When former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh in 2010 flagged Naxalism as the important internal security challenge, the insurgency was at its peak. In line with that assessment, the government of India reinforced security and development assistance to state governments faced with this problem. This combined effort is yielding positive results. The number of civilians and security forces killed has come down. So is the number of severely affected districts, which are no more than 30. What is catastrophic though is the sporadic high fatalities suffered by security forces in the well-planned offensive ambushes laid by Naxalites. Is this an insurmountable challenge? Analysing this menace from ideological, strategical and tactical frameworks is likely to throw some convincing answers.

According to Maoist ideology, economically oppressed peasants/working class will triumph over the oppressive capitalist bourgeois class to establish a classless society. For them, the only strategy to establish a classless society is through armed revolution. The operational tactics to give shape to that strategy is protracted guerrilla warfare.


The ideological fountain of Maoism, class struggle, that erupted as a small armed rebellion between the landless peasants and the landed aristocracy in Naxalbari village in West Bengal in 1967, could not sustain. Rapid economic growth, aspirational youth and opportunities created by communication and mobility act as a strong counter for economic class-based division.

The strategy of organising the oppressed class into a people’s army and a bottom-up approach of encircling the urban areas from the hinterland periphery to overthrow the ruling elite, remained a pipe-dream. If anything, armed class struggle which appeared to be taking roots in north Telangana, Srikakulam of Andhra Pradesh and south Vidarbha in the1980s, instead of expanding from villages to urban centres has retreated further into the core forested area.


With their ideology and strategy not getting much traction, the Maoists are seemingly succeeding in their tactics. It is showing in the support and sustenance Maoists receive from the local population and their ability to mobilise their village defence forces and armed dhalams into a kind of mobile army for a virulent attack. This is the nature of mobile guerrilla warfare. Fortunately for the security forces, the so-called liberated zone is confined to about 50,000 sqkm of forested area of Bastar, Bijapur, Dantewada, Kanker, Kondagaon, Narayanpur and Sukma districts of Chhattisgarh, with little spillover into adjoining Maharashtra and Odissa.

Strategic victory over them calls for clarity on the role and responsibility of the central and state and governments; honest assessment of capabilities, operational philosophy, mindset, willingness, compulsions and resolve of security forces involved in anti-Naxalite operations; and a realistic timeframe to root out this menace.


This warfare at the tactical level can be successfully fought by an equally agile, stealthy, enduring and disciplined commando force of the state police, recruited trained and raised primarily out of the local youth. The most acclaimed of such a commando force is the Greyhounds of erstwhile Andhra Pradesh police. This is a success story to build on.

Achieving strategic victory is no guarantee for lasting peace. Maoism is a social, economic and developmental issue manifesting as a violent internal security problem. Even the Maoists would like the state to respond from security rather than developmental perspective, as they know that only in relative poverty and severe infrastructure deficit, they have their captive support base of the population.

It is not merely for tactical reasons the Maoist influence thrives in contiguous forested areas spread over Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. There is a deep-rooted financial interest. This region is richly endowed with minerals of bauxite, iron ore, limestone, marble, dolomite, coal and copper and of pristine forests rich in timber and Minor Forest Produce (MFP). The MFP, which includes bamboo and tendu leaf (for rolling beedi), contrary to the nomenclature is a huge source of revenue estimated at over Rs 20,000 crore a year. The value chain in these natural resources leaves a huge profit margin for the extractive industry/contractors and scope for extortion/protection money to the Maoists. The unit of auction for extraction of MFP is a block of forest area. Quantity extracted out of a block is left to the ability of the contractor, thus leaving huge profit. The Maoists pose as Robin Hoods by seemingly negotiating a better wage for the labour or price for the produce.

With many state governments notifying the Panchayat (Extension of Scheduled Areas) Act 1996, the gram panchayats now auction the MFP, including bamboo and tendu leaves. Thus, substantial revenue goes to the village panchayats for development works. In theory, it is the most decentralised and financially empowered local self-government model. With little institutional support, it needs an independent study on the ability of the tribal village panchayats in managing these entrenched bunch of contractors, threats posed by Naxalites and possibilities it leaves for extortion. It is not for nothing that the panchayat elections are keenly contested in the Naxal-affected districts and the Naxalites, who are otherwise against electoral democracy, generally do not disturb these elections.

A national policy to end Naxalist violence has to emanate out of economic, developmental and internal security considerations. There has to be a judicious and environmentally sustainable extraction of natural resources, leaving no scope for value capture by unscrupulous elements. An integrated approach spearheaded by counter-offensive operations led by well trained, disciplined, agile and stealthy commando force of state police; expansion of road networks from the periphery to core of liberated zone constructed under security cover of central forces or even constructed by the specially raised engineering units of central forces; quick expansion of mobile communication and commercialisation of economic activities are slow but sure and irrevocable process to success.

(The writer is additional DGP (Planning & Coordination), Maharashtra State Police)