Friday, July 08, 2005

Burdwan police draw up blueprint to stem Naxal menace

Maoists get cops up & running
- Burdwan police draw up blueprint to stem menace

Durgapur, July 8: Burdwan police are drawing up a blueprint to combat the growing Naxalite menace in this district after the recent arrests of six Maoists.

The police went into overdrive after Saturday night’s arrests of a Naxalite trio holding a secret meeting in Jangalmahal forest region followed by another from the Coke Oven area the next day. So far, they have been under the impression that the menace is confined to Bankura, Purulia and West Midnapore.

Last night, two more alleged Maoists were picked up: a Durgapur Steel Plant employee, Dhajadhari Chatterjee, from his Hospital Road home, and a local salesman, Sushen Mahato, from his Mining Allied and Machineries Corporation colony residence. Several documents and posters were also seized.

Intelligence sources said the arrested Maoists confirmed links with hardcore guerrillas in Bankura, Purulia and West Midnapore.

“It appears the Naxalites are trying to build a base in the forest area and rope in tribal villagers,” Burdwan police superintendent N.K. Singh said today.

“We have got the names of more Maoists active in the district. Last night’s raid was a part of ongoing operations against the extremists. We hope to make more arrests.”

To clamp down on the growing menace, the police are planning to launch a door-to-door drive to persuade people to keep off the Maoists and not be drawn towards them.

The police and the intelligence branch will maintain a joint round-the-clock vigil in the Jangalmahal region, which covers the Kanksa, Laudoha, Aushgram and Guskara police station areas. These are underdeveloped pockets, peopled mostly by tribals.

The officials, dressed in plain clothes, will mingle with villagers so that they can collect data on their socio-economic condition.

The police will also keep track of people visiting these areas and prepare monthly reports on their activities and whereabouts. The reports will be scrutinised by senior intelligence officials and the police.

The Government Railway Police have been asked to maintain vigil on train passengers. An eye will also be kept on major bus termini for suspicious characters. “If we find anyone moving about suspiciously, we will detain them for interrogation,” a senior official said.

Although the police claim the Maoists are not planning any immediate strikes, a special training programme on locating and deactivating landmines and explosives will be held for select officers and constables. They will also be trained to tackle ambush situations

Red mark on Left leader

Shahi: Fresh charge

Ranchi, July 8: Allegations of links with extremists continue to haunt Forward Bloc MLA Bhanu Pratap Shahi.

Shahi, who was branded a Naxalite by Garhwa superintendent of police Deepak Verma, triggering a furore in the Assembly, has been labelled one yet again.

Police sources in Garhwa said their counterparts in Uttar Pradesh arrested a hardcore extremist, Mewalal, on Tuesday and brought him to the town yesterday. After several rounds of sustained interrogation, the man is said to have named Shahi, the MLA from Bhavnathpur in Garhwa, as a prominent sympathiser of the red brigade.

According to the statement, Shahi has been helping the Naxalite groups with resources, including money, for quite sometime.

Shahi described the charges as a “wonderful” conspiracy against him. The MLA, who is in Delhi, said: “I just don’t know why this is happening to me? It is a well-planned strategy to tarnish my character. The police can easily make a person speak according to their will,” he said.

Garhwa SP Verma refused to comment.

Police sources said the UP force had arrested Mewalal, an active member of the Naxalite brigade, three days ago. “This man mainly operates in Jharkhand. He has got many cases lined up in Garhwa. A team was sent and Mewalal was brought yesterday,” said an official.

The interrogation went on through the night after which Mewalal is said to have disclosed the name of Shahi. The arrested guerrilla also claimed Shahi has been supporting the Naxalite groups financially for a long time. “The man has revealed some alarming facts about Shahi. According to his statement, Shahi had directed the printing of many Naxalite pamphlets, books and other literary texts at a printing press in Patna,” said another official, who did not wish to be identified.

The police said they expected to learn more from Mewalal. “The man is a big catch for us. He has got vital information about Naxalite hideouts and training centres. His statements against the MLA are alarming,” said an officer.

Mewalal has disclosed the Maoist groups have training centres at Sasaram in Bihar. “A fresher is first sent to Sasaram for physical training. There he is taught to survive under tough conditions,” said an official.

More Naxal dens uncovered in state capital

Saturday July 9 2005 00:00 IST

HYDERABAD: Naxal dens in the state capital are being exposed by the day. Close on the heels of a weapon dump belonging to the Janasakthi group being unearthed in the city, the Warangal police raided a den belonging to CPI-ML Pratighatana, a splinter Naxalite outfit, and unearthed huge cash, fixed deposits and other assets, all worth Rs 44 lakh.

Three ultras belonging to the group were arrested while a top ranking functionary gave the slip and escaped.

An eight-member police team from Warangal raided the hide-out at Mirpet under Saroornagar police limits in the small hours of Friday and surrounded Pratighatana group Warangal district committee member Mallesh, his wife Ramadevi and two others --P Madhusudan Reddy and D Ramesh. However, Mallesh gave the slip and fled, police claimed without disclosing how he could have escaped from their dragnet.

The police seized Rs 12.55 lakh cash, fixed term deposits of various banks worth Rs 14.28 lakh, jewellery worth Rs 1.5 lakh and bank deposits worth Rs 1.87 lakh. Mallesh purchased the house in April this year and had it registered in the name of his wife. The house is valued at Rs 14 lakh.

The police also seized a country-made revolver, six rounds of ammunition and 50 gelatine sticks.

According to the police, Mallesh was working with the party for the last 16 years and was involved in three murders including that of constable in Warangal district. Madhusudan Reddy is the president of Progressive Youth League, a front organisation of Pratighatana.

Jharkhand to study Maoists' psyche

Ranchi: The Jharkhand police have proposed to set up an institute to study Maoists' psychology in order to counter their menace.

Maoist guerrillas are active in 18 of the 22 districts of the state.

"The Psychological Research and Analysis Institute, to be known as Psycho-ops, will study the psychology of Maoists and others who take up arms and the psycho-social factors responsible to force rural people to join Maoists," a senior police official told IANS.

The proposed laboratory - a first-of-its-kind, point out police officials - will also take care of the police's psychology and try to help officers de-stress. It will be set up at a cost of Rs.30 million.

The union home ministry was briefed about the proposal and was well received, police officials said.


Orissa plans second IR battalion in view of the growing Naxalite activities

State plans second IR battalion
Friday July 8 2005 12:49 IST

BHUBANESWAR: The State Government is seriously contemplating to raise the second India Reserve (IR) battalion in view of the growing Naxalite activities in western and northern districts.

Though the proposal to raise the second IR battalion was floated two years back, it was in cold storage due to the financial crunch. The State Government will also strengthen the intelligence-gathering network in the area.

Home Secretary Santosh Kumar admitted that lack of information about the activities of the ultras has led to the incident. He said that there is strong intelligence gathering network in Southern Orissa as a result of which police is scoring over the Naxalites.

Referring to the second IR battalion, Kumar said the Centre has already released Rs 6 crore during the current financial year out of the Rs 13 crore sanctioned for the purpose.

He, however, said that an additional Rs 40 crore per annum will be needed for maintaining a battalion.

The decision has been taken as the State Government can no longer depend solely on the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) for tackling the Naxals. Maintaining CRPF battalion in the State has become costly for the Government.

The Centre has exempted the State Government from paying the bill for CRPF for three years from July, 2004 to July, 2007.

However, it is yet to pay Rs 45 crore due for a two-year period from 2002 to 2004.

Naxalite vanishes before raid

Friday July 8 2005 07:38 IST

HYDERABAD: The police today raided a den of CPI-ML Janashakti Naxalites at Raghavendra Nagar under the Nacharam police station limits and seized some party literature and weapon pouches.

However, one of the suspected Naxalites had vanished from the place 10 minutes before the arrival of the police. It was stated that two Naxalites aged 30 took the house on rent four months ago. One of them introduced himself to the house-owner as a sales representative. The other posed himself as a student.

According to the neighbours, the duo never mingled with others. “Their movements were not suspicious,” said Penchalaiah, a neighbour. One of the Naxalites left the house around 7.30 AM. Ten minutes later, the police raided the place.

Six weapon pouches, party literature, CDs, cassettes, State committee resolutions and a few press releases were seized from the house. Nacharam police inspector Amarkanth Reddy said a manhunt was launched to nab the Naxalites.

Outpost rejig in Naxalite hotbed

- Fresh demarcation plan

Jamshedpur, July 7: West Singhbhum police have proposed a “fresh demarcation” of the police stations and outposts in the Naxalite-hit areas to facilitate effective administration.

District superintendent of police Navin Kumar Singh said the delimitation plans were made based on five aspects. “Proximity of villages from the police stations, mode of communications, population within the jurisdictions, crime profiles and a sea-change in the environment of the forest regions of the district,” Singh told The Telegraph.

These proposals have been drafted to facilitate the policemen and tribal natives, dwelling in one of the toughest terrains of the state, Singh said. He added, “There are 23 police installations including the outpost in the Ho dominant district. Police hubs were formed many decades ago and populations in these regions have increased since then.”

The police chief also added many forest-revenue villages, in Asia's famous Sal stretch of forest, have been well connected with police stations.

“Especially in central and southern pockets of district, infrastructure had been built. Villages are connected with the police stations. All these developments amounted to the reorganising of police stations’ boundaries,” Singh said.

There have been instances of complainants having to travel to their respective police station limits to lodge a complaint.

“But according to the rules, an individual can lodge a complaint in any police station. After registering the cases, the policemen have to transfer the first information report to the concerned station. Thought, the policemen do not entertain such cases and simply recommend case to be filed in the respective thanas,” Singh said.

Explaining the advantages of delimitation police stations, the superintended of police said, “Policemen need not refer cases to other police stations. They will not indulge in double documentation. And complainers will get justice closer to home.”

Singh said the proposed plans have been sent to the home department for final approval. “Government has given an affirmative gesture and we are waiting for the nod,” Singh said.

Naxalites hacked to death Five villagers in Orissa

Five villagers slaughtered by MCC
Thursday July 07, 2005

In one of the ghastly most Naxal violence in the State, MCC ultras slaughtered five persons in three villages under Jujumara police station limits in Sambalpur districts early on Thursday morning.

By InsightOrissa Bureau

In one of the ghastly most Naxal violence in the State, MCC ultras slaughtered five persons in three villages under Jujumara police station limits in Sambalpur districts early on Thursday morning. Armed Naxals dragged these civilians out of their sleep to the open before brutally hacking them to death in the mid of the villages. The incident has jolted the State police establishment, the majority of which is sweating in Puri on account of the Car Festival on 8th July.

Explaining about the killings, a top police official told that it was about 3 in the morning when roughly two dozen MCC ultras armed with sophisticated weapons trooped into Banjaritikira village and dragged out Debi Mirdha, Janma Majhi and Ishwar Majhi out of their homes to the center of the village. They ruthlessly tortured the captives before killing them. Similar incidents occurred in Taparasingha and Larabira villages where Maoists stabbed Guru Charan Nayak and Suru Babu in identical fashion until they died.

According to reports, the Maoists carried out their “Operation Slaughter” for more than two hours without a semblance of opposition. Police, too, could not get to know about the incidents until the ultras vanished into the nearby jungles. No one has been traced so far even though a horde of police personnel is said to be coming the entire area since morning.

Though the police have not established the motive of this mass murder, it is suspected MCC ultras wanted to send a message that a war is round the corner. The slain villagers were said to be police informers and openly opposed the upsurge in MCC violence. The Naxals also issued a sort of challenge to the district police after two of their cadres were killed in encounter with police in June last and three of their camps destroyed.

Director General of Police Suchit Das, indeed, has a plateful to handle. While he is personally busy managing the security arrangements in Puri with special emphasis on preempting any possible terrorist activity post-Ram Janmabhoomi incident, a hugely destabilizing Naxal violence far away in Sambalpur, certainly, caught him in a crossroad.


Naxalites kill five in Orissa

Teacher’s throat slit; alert sounded


BHUBANESWAR, JULY 7 Striking late Wednesday night, Left extremists killed five people across Tamparsingha, Banjaridikira and Larabira villages in Orissa’s Sambalpur district, as part of a series of attacks spread over five hours.

Police confirmed that the attacks were carried out by CPI(ML) activists. An alert has been sounded in all Naxal-hit districts, officials said.

Police sources said more than 30 heavily-armed Naxals descended on Tamparsingha at about midnight last night. There they attacked Gurucharan Nayak, the husband of a village panchayat samiti member. They went on to loot a grocery shop before bombing the shop-owner’s house.

The extremists then trekked to Banjaridikira where they killed three people—Janma Majhi, Iswar Majhi and Desi Majhi. At about 4.30 a.m., they reached Larabira where they slit the throat of a teacher, Surubabu Podha.

Police said the villages are all located in dense forests. Larabira, the last point of attack, was the closest to Jujumara Police Station—17 km away.

This is the fourthNaxalitr violence in the state in as many months.

DGP Suchit Das, who reviewed security arrangements on Thursday morning, has ordered a Central Reserve Police Force mobilisation from Mayurbhanj to boost the Orissa State Armed Police presence at Sambalpur.

Combing operations have been intensified and all bordering areas have been sealed. Three Special Operation Group teams have been pressed into service, while the IG (Operations) has been deputed to inquire into the incident. The Sambalpur SP SK Nath has also rushed to the area, the DGP said.



Maoists spill blood again; kill five
Friday July 8 2005 12:48 IST

BHUBANESWAR/SAMBALPUR: Striking at dead of the night and once again at a remote pocket of Sambalpur district, suspected Left wing radicals on Wednesday mowed down five persons of three villages under Jujumara police limits. All the five were hacked to death by the dreaded CPI-ML radicals.

An alert has been sounded in all the Naxal-hit districts. Expressing grief, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced an ex gratia of Rs 1 lakh each for the family of the deceased.

Leader of the Opposition J B Patnaik said that this only proves that the law and order in the State is in complete disarray. Either the Naveen Patnaik Government should control the Maoists or go, he said.

DGP Suchit Das, who reviewed security arrangements on Thursday morning, has ordered mobilisation of one platoon of CPRF from Mayurbhanj to add to the existing strength of Orissa State Armed Police at Sambalpur.

Combing operation has been augmented and bordering areas have been sealed. Three Special Operation Groups (SOGs) teams have been pressed into service while IG (Operations) has been deputed to inquire into it.

Sambalpur SP S K Nath has rushed to the spot, the DGP said.

Police sources said, more than 30 heavily armed Naxals raided three villages - Tamparsingha, Banjaridikira and Larabira - late on Wednesday night. The ghastly operation took five hours. Police said most of the villages are located in dense forests.

Huge cache of arms : Residents of Fareed Basthi shocked

Friday July 8 2005 07:47 IST

HYDERABAD: Residents of Fareed Basthi in Himayathnagar were shocked when the police raided and seized a huge cache of arms and ammunition belonging to CPI-ML Janashakti Naxalites from a private house on Thursday.

The two-storeyed house, Shakuntala Nivas, situated in a small lane belonged to G Gopal, a plumber in City Civil Courts. Police said that a major calamity would have occurred in the locality had the explosives gone off accidentally.

Speaking to this website’s newspaper, Gopal’s daughter-in-law, Latha said, “We leased a portion on the first floor of the house for Rs 1,800 per month when a youth Yadagiri approached us on May 25. He said that he along with two others, Ramulu and Laxman, would stay in the house. When asked about their back ground, Yadagiri said they were natives of Warangal district and doing computer engineering course in an institute in Himayathnagar”.

“They used to come down only to fetch water and speak rarely with us. Last month a woman, aged about 45 years, who herself introduced as Yadagiri’s mother, came to the house and stayed for a few days and left” she said.

Latha’s husband Janardhan said that, “Four persons came on mufti after midnight and started breaking the lock. When we went up, they said they were from the police department and asked us to go inside. Two persons left after a few hours and the remaining two waited till morning”, he said.

“We heard in televisions and read in newspapers about unearthing Naxal dumps in forests, but this is the first time we saw police recovering from a house that too from the heart of the city. We never knew that Naxalites were staying in our locality,” said a neighbour Lakshmi.

“Thank God, police have seized the ammunition and averted a major mishap. The owners should be very careful while giving their houses for rent,” said Imran of the locality.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Ultras strike in Orissa, 5 killed

Agencies/ Sambalpur

Suspected Maoists struck terror in villages in Orissa's Sambalpur district, brutally killing five people in the wee hours today, just over a month after they shot dead three persons.

The heavily armed ultras, numbering about 30, moved from one village to another for several hours, called out people selectively and axed them to death, police said.

The ultras might have killed the five villagers suspecting them to be police informers, the police said.

The DIG of police (northern range) Pranabindu Acharya and the superintendent of police Sushanta Kumar Nath have rushed to the area.

The sources said those killed were Gurucharan Nayak, the husband of a panchayat member, who was done to death with a crowbar in Tamparsinga village.

Three others, Janam Majhi (35), Deshi Mirdha (35) and Iswar Majhi (40) were hacked to death at neighbouring Banjaritikira hamlet while Surubabu Podha (48), a teacher, was killed at Larabira village.

The attacks continued for several hours, triggering panic in the area.

NSCN-IM criticises troops deployment

Kohima, July 6: The National Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isak-Muivah) has criticised the state government for deploying a battalion of Nagaland police to counter Naxalite activities in Chattisgarh and expressed solidarity for the People’s War Group.

The rebel group said the PWG was an organisation “fighting for the rights of oppressed people” and not a terrorist group. “It is not the will of the Naga people to fight against people who are fighting for their legitimate rights,” read a communiqué from the NSCN (I-M) steering committee.

The 9 India Reserve Battalion (IRB) of the state police was sent to Chhatisgarh to counter the PWG, active on the Chhatisgarh-Andhra Pradesh boundary. More than a thousand IRB jawans left for Raipur in two batches last week.

Earlier, some NGOs too had expressed unhappiness over the deployment.

The NSCN (I-M) criticised the government on the grounds that it was unfair to send Nagas to fight against “oppressed people” in the midst of the ongoing Naga peace process with the Centre. Instead of sending armed policemen to fight the Naxals, the state could have suggested peaceful alternatives to resolve the conflict, the NSCN (I-M) said.

The state government, however, argued that the Centre had allowed raising the IRB on condition that the jawans could be deployed anywhere in the country.

The IRB men from Nagaland are considered among the best in the country and requests for their services come from several other states, sources added.

The Naga troop came into prominence after the Kargil War when the regiment’s performance on the Kashmir heights earned plaudits.

However, senior officers are afraid of the jawans sustaining injuries during the Chhatisgarh assignment, since the PWG is known to use landmines, yet they are confident that the men would do their best “with guns and daos (machetes)”.

The NSCN (I-M)’s reaction has been on expected lines, for the outfit maintains solidarity with several other militant outfits in the Northeast and elsewhere. During the outfit’s general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah’s recent stay in Delhi, he is believed to have met leaders of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi.

Besides the NSCN (I-M), other Naga rebels, including the NSCN (Khaplang) faction, are also known to have links with several outfits in Manipur, Assam and Meghalaya.

Meanwhile, the NSCN (I-M) came out with a special message on July 4, the American Independence Day, asking for US support for the Naga cause. The message stated that Americans were known for protecting the democratic rights of the people and the outfit looked up to them for “understanding the Naga problem”.

Terrorism is war in disguise -- Tavleen Singh

TAVLEEN SINGH | Thursday, July 07, 2005 11:21:43 IST
This government signalled its tolerance of terrorism almost from its first moment in office by repealing POTA

The scariest thing about the terrorist attack in Ayodhya is the government's response. To call it namby-pamby would be an under statement. It would be more accurate to describe it as a non-response. The Prime Minister postponed his trip to flood ravaged Gujarat to call an emergency meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Political Affairs and in his usual mild, gentlemanly fashion said the government would deal with terrorism with 'determination and resolve'. Well, Sir, thanks a lot, but would you be kind enough to explain why, since your appointment to the most important job in the country, there has been this upsurge in both terrorist and Naxalite violence? Was it because you were dealing with the problem with determination and resolve? If it was, then you need to do more.

Terrorism resurface

My view is that the reason why even Khalistani human bombs are suddenly creeping out of the sewers in which terrorists breed, after more than a decade of peace in Punjab, is because the United Progressive Alliance government gives the impression of being a complete pushover. It gives the impression of being the sort of government that would barely be able to respond even if we found ourselves at war. Terrorism is war. It is likely to be the only war that will be fought in South Asia in the 21st century and it is a war India is losing because the Sonia-Manmohan government has given it less importance than it gives to 'secularism'. Its fight against 'communal forces' is no more than a political fight to keep the Bharatiya Janata Party out of power but it has taken such precedence on this government's political agenda that terrorism does not even appear except at the bottom somewhere in very small print.

This government signalled its tolerance of terrorism almost from its firstmoment in office by repealing POTA (Prevention of Terrorism Act). The repealwas designed to win the sympathy of Muslims who - on account of the fact that most terrorist groups currently are Islamic - have suffered more as a result of POTA. In repealing POTA, the Prime Minister appears to have forgotten that preventive detention under TADA (Terrorism and Disruptive Activities) was first introduced by a Congress government because when Khalistani terrorism was at its height, it was impossible to bring it under control using normal laws. Had normal laws been used and normal policing - instead of K.P.S. Gill's policy of fighting terror with terror - we might never have seen an end to the Punjab problem.Human rights groups have hounded him ever since without stopping for one moment to consider if it is not a violation of human rights when terrorists kill unarmed civilians, women and children. Human rights groups have an inordinate hold over this government because they are usually leftist in their politics and the Sonia-Manmohan government depends for its survival on sixty Marxist MPs. Human rights groups have their place but when they begin to influence government policy they become dangerous.

Was it their influence that persuaded this government to let Hurriyat leaders like Yaseen Malik and Omar Farooq travel to Islamabad and abuse India and sing the praises of 'freedom fighters' like Pakistan's Information Minister, Sheikh Rashid, who ran terrorist training camps on his farm?
The Prime Minister and Sonia Gandhi have been unusually silent about the purpose of the Hurriyat visit.

What was it for? What did we hope to achieve? What did we achieve? And, more importantly, what is this government's Kashmir policy and what is our Pakistan policy?
It is not enough to say we want peace, which is all that has been said so far. Of course, we want peace and we want a solution in Kashmir but are we prepared for a solution that amounts to virtually dissolving the borders Kashmir shares with Pakistan? The Prime Minister has been praised by my more liberal colleagues for having told General Pervez Musharraf that there will be no changes in the borders of India. But, softening the borders to the point of dissolution amounts to changing them and we appear to be doing this without Pakistan giving up its war against us that goes by the euphemism of terrorism.

Nurturing terror
The human bombs that killed themselves in the attempt to blow up the temple in Ayodhya are believed to have belonged to the Lashkar-e-Tayyaba. For those of you unfamiliar with the murky world of terrorism, allow me to explain that this is a Lahore based group that has long been funded by the ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence). The General, in his image makeover, likes to tell the world that despite supposedly being in the frontline in the war against terrorism, he cannot control the terrorist groups that he once nurtured. They are loose cannons and so much their own masters that there have been attempts on his own life.The truth is that Paksitan's war against terrorism is as duplicitous as its talk of peace with India. The General has made serious efforts to control those groups responsible for terrorism against America and those groups responsible for terrorism against Pakistan but the Kashmir 'jehad' is still on. From our government, what we need is a 'jehad' against this 'jehad' and there are no signs of this happening. If Sonia Gandhi could devote as much time to this 'jehad' as she does to the 'jehad' against 'communal forces', there may be some chance of us winning the war against terrorism, otherwise we may as well consider it lost. Strange that she should find our own toothless fanatics more dangerous than armed fanatics from across the border.

‘Red threat forced TRS to quit Govt'

Thursday July 7 2005 11:45 IST

VISAKHAPATNAM: The CPM State secretary BV Raghavulu on Wednesday termed the resignations of TRS Ministers from the Cabinet as an ‘opportunistic step’ compelled by Naxalite threats.

Speaking to reporters here, Raghavulu questioned why TRS Ministers recognised the ‘Chief Minister’s humiliating attitude’ at this juncture though they had been experiencing it for the past 14 months.

‘‘The TRS Ministers’ resignations are not justified as the government is confronted by serious problems like RTC strike, doctors strike and issuance of house sites for the poor,’’ Raghavulu said. He also demanded the TRS chief to clarify whether the party wished to continue its alliance with the Congress.

‘‘They quit the State Cabinet but want to continue as Ministers in the Union Cabinet. This is sending a wrong message and creating confusion among the public,’’ he said.

When asked about Visakhapatnam district Collector’s attitude in dealing with problems in the district, Raghavulu suggested to the Collector to change his behaviour. ‘‘He is acting like an eccentric and working as an extra-constitutional authority,’’ Raghavulu alleged.

He justified the stand taken by CPM workers in encroaching the 22 acres of the Mangalagiri temple land. “We support the encroachment of that land by the poor. We also demand the government to regularise that land and issue pattas to the poor,’’ he said.

Police recovered Naxal literature , 50 hand grenades, ammunition in Hyderabad

Tejeswi Pratima

Thursday, July 7, 2005 (Hyderabad):

Hyderabad police have found 50 hand grenades, ammunition and Naxal literature inside a two-room house in the Himayatnagar colony.

The house was given out on rent to two bachelors on May 25. The house owner, Lata, says the tenants claimed to be computer engineering students.

"They did not look like Naxalites. They looked decent and we couldn't have imagined that something like this would happen," she said.

Serious questions

The unearthing of the dump has raised questions about how safe Hyderabad is, and whether the Naxals have infiltrated deep into the city.

The police claim they got information about the Naxal dump from the material it collected after the encounter in Karimnagar district last month, in which top Janshakti leader Riaz was killed.

They say the unearthing of this dump is proof that the encounter was not a fake.

Maoist arms cache found in Hyderabad (LEAD)
Hyderabad: Police Thursday unearthed two arms dumps of the outlawed Maoist guerrilla group CPI-ML Janashakti in this Andhra Pradesh capital, with officials saying the weapons could have been used for a major strike by the rebels.

Fifty grenades and ammunition were recovered from two houses in different parts of the city.

State police chief Swranjit Sen did not rule out the possibility that the Maoists might have been planning to attack political leaders and others in the state capital.

The arms were found when police parties raided a house in the busy Himayatnagar neighbourhood in the heart of the city and another house in Nacharam on the city outskirts.

However, no arrests were made, officials said.

A police spokesman said 50 grenades with spare parts, ammunition, a carbine magazine, a computer, 40 CDs, audiocassettes, literature, a camera flash, photos and a book with details of receipts of Rs.13.4 million were recovered in the raid on the house in Himayatnagar.

Police are trying to trace a person who had rented the house.

In the other raid at Nacharam, police recovered party literature, CDs, photos and other material.

"Each grenade can take the life of 10 people. That means 50 grenades could have killed 500 people. So do you think the people who were killed in encounters were innocent?" asked police chief Sen, justifying action against Maoists in different parts of the state.

Asked whether the recovery of arms dumps in the state capital was a matter of concern, Sen said the rebels were running towards towns as pressure was mounting on them in rural areas.

Police were trying to gather more information on the hideouts of Maoists, he said, noting that some 60 weapons had been recovered from Janashakti guerrillas during the past six months.

Thursday's raid was conducted on the basis of information found in a diary recovered from a slain Janashakti guerrilla. Four guerrillas of the group, including a top leader, were killed in an alleged gun battle with police in Karimnagar district July 1.

Janashakti is the second major extremist group after the CPI-Maoist in Andhra Pradesh.


10 Naxalites lay down arms

Thursday July 7 2005 11:43 IST

ANANTAPUR: Ten Maoists, including the commander of Ramagiri dalam and the deputy commander of Papagni dalam, surrendered before the Officer on Special Duty G Vijayakumar here on Wednesday.

Addressing a press conference, the OSD said that the Naxals surrendered following continuous counselling by the police during grama sabhas in Naxal infested-villages.

Those who surrendered include Ramgiri dalam commander Potulayya alias Srikanth (22) belonging to Kurugubta village in Anantapur rural mandal and Papagni dalam deputy commander David alias Ravi (23) of Shekshanupalle in Uravakonda mandal. The others are dalam members.

Srikanth is the main accused in cases relating to killing of constables Chandra, Subahan, P Ravindra Reddy, Kondapuram sarpanch Aadi Narayana and MPTC Akkaulappala and the blasting of a claymore mine on former MP K Srinivasulu.

He was also involved in 25 other cases. Srikanth, narrating the caste divide among the Maoists, said he surrendered due to personal reasons.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Naxalites beheaded 3 Shanti Sena members

Peace force faces Maoist fury

Ranchi, July 6: In a severe blow to the anti-extremist campaign in the rebel-infested Gumla district, three members belonging to the Shanti Sena were beheaded by the outlawed CPI(Maoist) activists last evening.

Police sources said the incident took place at Khairpani village, located in the hilly areas amid dense forest tracts, some 10 km away from Palkot police station in Gumla district.

The extremists, apparently angered by the formation of the Shanti Senas in the villages of Gumla district that had full support from the state police and district administration, later beat up the family members of the three beheaded activists, seized all their household goods and blew up their houses.

More than a hundred armed extremists surrounded Khairpani village yesterday. To preven the villagers from coming together, they bolted every house in the hamlet from outside and began an intensive search operation to locate the three Sena leaders, Mahesh Singh, Mangal Singh and Khirodhar Singh.

Mahesh was the first to be dragged out of his house. However, he managed to set himself free and in turn attacked one of the extremists with a sharp-edged weapon. He was soon overpowered, thrashed severely and then beheaded in full view of his wailing family members.

Two other Shanti Sena activists, Mangal and Khirodhar, too, met the same fate.

Irate extremists later pumped in dozens of bullets on the three dead bodies.

Household goods of the three Sena activists were also seized by the extremists who used dynamite sticks to blow up the houses of the three.

The extremists also decamped with three licensed firearms belonging to the deceased.

Intensive combing operations have been started by the police personnel and para- military forces in the dense forest tracts of Palkot subdivision.

Gumla superintendent of police M.L. Meena is currently away on leave and assistant superintendent of police Saket Kumar Singh is in charge of the operation.

Efforts to contact Singh, however, failed as he was reported to be leading the force in the remote Palkot areas.

A police spokesman, Ravindra Kumar, inspector at Gumla police station, while confirming the incident said contingents of police and paramilitary forces have been rushed to Palkot to lead combing operations.

The state police, as part of its campaign to involve local people to combat the growing menace posed by the banned Maoist Communist Centre and Peoples War groups, had set up Gram Raksha Dals and Shanti Senas at the village levels throughout Gumla for the past two years.

These people resistance forces were given liberal arms licenses to provide support to the people.

Plans were also afoot to arm these groups with mobile phones and other communication devices.

The police sources confirmed that the formation of the peoples’ resistance groups had heavily paid off as more than a dozen extremists were killed in the district, leading to a near wipe off of extremist activities in the district.

However, the latest incident and the gruesome murder of three anti-extremist campaigners have spread terror in the district.

Local villagers revealed that more than two years after the resistance groups were formed for the villagers’ safety, the three Sena activists were killed yesterday.

After a lull in activities, suspected extremists of CPI (Maoist) struck again and killed four persons belonging to a family by slitting their throat in Jharkhand’s Lohardaga district in the wee hours of Tuesday, DHNS reports from Ranchi.



Bastar, Mar. 24: In a naxal attack in Dantewada area in Bastar, one constable was killed and another seriously injured. "There were two constables deployed here for the arrival of the Governor. The second constable is injured and he told us that 3 to 4 people came from behind and attacked both the constables. They slit the throat of one constable and attacked the other.

4. Beheaded for casting his vote:-Ranchi February 23, 2005 2:27:48 PM IST

Ranchi, Feb 23 : He was the first to vote at a polling booth in
Jharkhand. But for his small democratic act, Jeevanlal Mahto met a grisly end - shot, decapitated and his severed head displayed as a warning to others by Maoist rebels.


Naxals killed 2 Villagers , while one was shot dead and other beheaded

7 cops dead: Naxal toll ticking in Gadchiroli
Two villagers with ‘informer’ tag shot dead

Posted online: Saturday, May 21, 2005 at 0215 hours IST
NAGPUR, MAY 20: Naxal violence is once again on the rise in Gadchiroli — eleven villagers and seven policemen have been killed this year. The latest attack came on Thursday, when Naxals killed two villagers on the Maharashtra-Chhattisgarh border, accusing them of being police informers.
While Karuram Poya, 52, was shot dead, Kisan Madavi, 36, was beheaded, SP Shirish Jain told The Indian Express. Jain refuted the Naxal claim that Poya and Madavi were informers. ‘‘In fact, they were trying to recruit an unwilling Madavi,’’ he said.
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A spurt in Naxal violence followed the breakdown of a peace dialogue with the Andhra Government. ‘‘The rate at which they are killing villagers is alarming,’’ Jain said, adding, ‘‘the number of murders since January is one of the highest for the corresponding periods of any previous year.’’
In February, seven policemen were killed in a landmine blast near Bhamraharh. Naxals recently assaulted forest employees, attacked policemen with grenades and set on fire two gram panchayats.
By organising a Daman Viroshi Saptah (anti-repression week) in mid-May, Naxals also tried to instigate people against the police. They cited the Vyankatapur incident in which a sub-inspector allegedly molested a woman while his colleague gunned down her husband.
The Vyankatapur incident brought back memories of the killing of an alleged Naxal sympathiser, Chinna Mattami, in 2000. Mattami was killed in an encounter that sparked a huge furore.
When a magisterial probe proved that Chinna was not a Naxal, the police had set out to prove the ‘‘tribal-Naxal nexus’’ through identification parades of tribals, which saw many of them being labelled as Naxal supporters. The drive had to be dropped following a high court directive.
In the following years, the Gadchiroli police had built bridges with the tribals. Led by then SP Rajvardhan, it had embarked on a campaign to win the confidence of the tribals. The efforts paid dividends with over 200 villages announcing gaonbandi (no-entry) to Naxals.
‘‘Even at the Venkatapur village, we had set up our post a year ago to facilitate the BRO’s work, which had stopped due to a threat by Naxal Dalam commander Vishwanath, who was later apprehended. It was due to our post that the village also got electricity,’’ Jain said.

Now, Maharashtra offers amnesty to Naxalites

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MUMBAI: Having lost over three hundred lives, the state government on Wednesday announced an amnesty scheme for Naxalites. Out of Maharashtra’s 35 districts, Gadchiroli, Chandrapur, Bhandara, Gondia, Yavatmal and Nanded, bordering Andhra Pradesh or Chhatisgarh, have been struggling with Naxalite violence for quite some time.

Recently, seven police personnel and a civilian were killed in a landmine blast triggered by cadres of the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) on the Deori-Chichgad road in Gondia District of Vidarbha. Renewed attacks by the Naxalite groups on civilians and government officials seems to have forced the government to announce such a scheme.

The other two states — Andhra Pradesh and Chhatisgarh — had announced similar concessions to Naxal groups in an effort to contain the menace. The Maharashtra government would review the scheme after six months.

“The state government would implement amnesty scheme for Naxals who are active in the state and registered in either Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh,” chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh told reporters after the weekly cabinet meeting here. But, he said, the Naxals should fulfil all the criteria set by state government.

Those surrendering will be given cash prize immediately and additional money would be given if they surrender with weapons, Mr Deshmukh said, adding, those demanding security cover would be provided with the same. The state government would also review cases filed against the surrendered Naxals and the ways to withdraw them, the chief minister said. He said the state government would also rehabilitate Naxals by providing them land and house or

Rs 50,000 instead of a house apart from free education to their children. The scheme would be applicable for six months, Mr Deshmukh clarified adding, the state government would hand over Rs 5 lakh for the implementation of the scheme to state DGP.

About 230 civilians were killed and 135 injured in Naxal attacks in the state from ’80 to ’04, he said adding, 74 police personnel had also lost life while 135 got injured in the attacks during same period. This year alone 19 lives have been lost, including 14 security force (SF) personnel, 4 civilians, and one Naxalite, in violence so far.

According to the Union home ministry, “In Maharashtra, while the level of Naxal violence increased by 15% during ‘04 as compared to ‘03, the CPML-PW (Communist Party of India-Marxist Leninist-People’s War) continued to dominate the forest and mountainous tracts of Gadchiroli and Gondia Districts and made efforts to extend its influence to the districts of Chandrapur and Yavatmal.” Seven fatalities in Naxalite violence were recorded by the MHA Report in ’01; 29 in ’02; 31 in ’03; and 15 in ‘04. However, incidents of Naxalite related violence rose from 75 in ’03 to 84 in ’04.

Naxalite-hit states to get mine-proof vehicles



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NEW DELHI: Centre has decided to procure 120 sophisticated air-conditioned mine-proof vehicles (MPVs) for security personnel deployed in the Naxal-affected states. While 50 MPVs will be provided to the CRPF, the remaining will go to states, including Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and Maharashtra.

The procurement of MPVs, indigenously manufactured at the Ordnance Factory, Medak, Andhra Pradesh, is significant as it will provide the security forces extra protection while carrying out operations against Naxals who, of late, have developed expertise in laying high-power anti-personnel and anti-vehicle landmines.

Special secretary (internal security) in the ministry of home affairs Anil Chowdhry said: "The MPVs are being provided to the states under police modernisation schemes. Fifteen such vehicles have already been delivered to Chhattisgarh. We are hoping to get another 45 vehicles by September."

Chowdhry said: "We recently visited Medak and inspected the available MPVs. Though these vehicles are quite good, the idea is to provide the security personnel more sophisticated vehicles with additional features in due course."

The decision to procure additional MPVs has been taken in the wake of recent attacks, mainly mine blasts, in states like Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, Jharkhand and Bihar. Chhattisgarh witnessed many blasts in South Bastar last month when Naxals laid anti-personnel and anti-vehicle mines targeting security personnel.

At least six CRPF personnel and three civilians were killed in one such blast which was so powerful that the truck carrying the securitymen was blown to pieces.

More Maoist arrests expose Andhra link

Statesman News Service

KANKSA (Burdwan), July 5.— Andhra Pradesh link with the detained Maoists in Kanksa has come to light establishing the fact that the outfit had been operating in the Durgapur industrial zone.
Police said the Naxalites have confessed that they planned to make the Asansol-Durgapur industrial hub a soft target.
The DIG (Burdwan Range), Mr Nanda Biswas and the SP, Burdwan, Mr N K Singh reached the Kanksa PS in Burdwan today to interrogate the Maoists in police custody. Police have been picking up Naxalites ,from different stretches of the coal and iron belt since two days, adding four more to the arrest count. Mr Nanda Biswas, DIG (BR) told The Statesman:“Two of the detained ultras have opened up finally and we have gathered a lot of information regarding their deep-rooted link with the outfit heads operating in Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Kolkata and Midnapore.” Locals from different segments have also got associated with the Maoists in this belt which is a matter of concern ,he added.The Burdwan SP, Mr NK Singh told reporters: “We are yet to identify the heads behind the organisation. We have got certain information establishing their link with some personalities residing in Salt Lake area in Kolkata and some staying in Midnapore, Bankura and Jharkhand,” he said
The DIG, Mr Biswas said: “One of the hard core leaders has expressed his desire to return to the mainstream of life.”Mr Prasanta Roy, alias Tapan alias Buro, who hails from Chagulia, in Onda PS area in Bankura had been helping to run training camps in Jungle Mahal hideouts in Kanksa. He was arrested from Shibpur location with his aide Mr Ajit Halder. Mr Biswas and sought police assistance to return to the mainstream. The chief minister, Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, has declared safe rehabilitation for the Naxalite ultras who wish to come back.

Maoist wants to go by Buddha’s doctrine

Statesman News Service

KANKSA (Burdwan), July 5.— Andhra Pradesh link with the detained Maoists in Kanksa has come to light establishing the fact that the outfit had been operating in the Durgapur industrial zone.
Police said the Naxalites have confessed that they planned to make the Asansol-Durgapur industrial hub a soft target.
The DIG (Burdwan Range), Mr Nanda Biswas and the SP, Burdwan, Mr N K Singh reached the Kanksa PS in Burdwan today to interrogate the Maoists in police custody. The police has been picking up Naxalites ,from different stretches of the coal and iron belt since two days, adding four more to the arrest count. Mr Nanda Biswas, DIG (BR) told The Statesman: “Two of the detained ultras have opened up finally and we have gathered a lot of information regarding their deep-rooted link with the outfit heads operating in Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Kolkata and Midnapore.” Locals from different segments have also got associated with the Maoists in this belt which is a matter of concern ,he added.
The Burdwan SP, Mr NK Singh told reporters: “We are yet to identify the heads leading the organisation. We have got certain information establishing their link with some personalities residing in Salt Lake area in Kolkata and some staying in Midnapore, Bankura and Jharkhand,” he said
The DIG, Mr Biswas said: “One of the hard core leaders has expressed his desire to return to the mainstream of life.” Mr Prasanta Roy, alias Tapan alias Buro, who hails from Chagulia, in Onda PS area in Bankura had been helping to run training camps in Jungle Mahal hideouts in Kanksa. He was arrested from Shibpur location with his aide Mr Ajit Halder. Mr Biswas and sought police assistance to return to the mainstream. The chief minister, Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, has declared safe rehabilitation for the Naxalite ultras who wish to come back.

Stateless in Andhra

[ WEDNESDAY, JULY 06, 2005 12:00:00 PM ]

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TRS ministers resign in Hyderabad over Telengana

Pity the Telengana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) leadership. They fought the assembly and Parliament elections last year demanding a separate state of Telengana. The Congress didn't agree with the demand, but for electoral reasons had to agree to an alliance. The Maoists too pitched in with support. After winning five Lok Sabha and 26 assembly seats, the TRS now realises that the Telengana state is nothing more than a mirage. The Congress, the Telugu Desam and the CPM are opposed to the idea while the BJP is ambivalent. To be fair, the TRS president and Union minister K Chandrasekhara

Rao (KCR) had threatened to walk out of the UPA and the Y S Rajasekhara Reddy ministry if the Centre did not get serious about Telengana. The sub-committee set up by the UPA under defence minister Pranab Mukherjee met in April and called for suggestions. A report has been promised on the issue soon. But KCR has preferred to go for the jugular, except that he has decided to remain in the Union cabinet. The TRS now plans a 'forceful agitation' to protest the state government's bias against Telengana.
KCR has raised issues of development — like the construction of Pulinchintala dam — to beef up his argument. But the key factor that has forced the TRS to walk out of the ministry is fear. Fear that the party is losing support at the grass roots, and more importantly, that the Maoists will target its leaders, as they have warned. The Maoist threat is for real after Andhra police shot Riyaz, a CPI (Maoist) leader, who was part of the team that held talks with the government. On Monday, KCR charged the state government of staging fake encounters and human rights violations. The YSR ministry is under no threat since the Congress has a majority in the assembly. What is worrisome is the trajectory that TRS-Naxal politics will take in Telengana. After talks between the state government and the Maoists broke down last year, encounters have been on the rise. The two sides — the state and the Naxals — have refused to negotiate political demands. TRS was one of the parties instrumental in initiating the talks. They should now push for a resumption of dialogue.

Woman Naxal gives up before SP

Wednesday July 6 2005 12:30 IST

CHITTOOR: A Naxalite of the Nallamala dalam, M Sumathi alias Radha (30) surrendered before superintendent of police VV Gopalakrishna here on Tuesday.

A native of Yerragudipadu village in Mittakandriga panchayat, she cited poor health as the reason for her surrender.

Having discontinued her education after class five, she joined the Naxal movement in 1994, after being influenced by revolutionary songs and speeches of the Naxalite leaders.

Since then, she shifted to various squads before joining the Nallamala dalam. She is married to Y Surender Reddy (32), also a Naxalite, who is currently serving a jail term in Hyderabad.

The SP handed over Rs 5,000 to Sumathi as interim relief.

Speaking on the occasion, Gopalakrishna appealed to six other Naxalites in the district to surrender and join the mainstream of society.

They are: R Pratap Reddy (36) of Tavanampalli, M Chandrasekhar Reddy (23) of Irala, Kumari Amula of Srikalahasti (26), S Mariamma (21) of Narayanavanam, P Madhu of BN Kandriga (30) and P Chinnaswamy (28) of Yerpedu.

Uttar Pradesh's brush with terror



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LUCKNOW: Although terrorist activities, mostly sponsored by Pakistani intelligence agencies, have been going on in the state for over one decade, the Tuesday's fidayeen attack in Ayodhya was really the biggest one.

Intelligence reports and arrests of militants by state police have been revealing from time to time that Ayodhya, Mathura and Kashi top the hitlist of terrorist outfits but it was for the first time that one of them was actually attacked by the ultras.

However, the state had a taste of extremist violence in the form of Naxal upsurge in November-December last year. On 20 November 2004, Naxals blew up a PAC truck, killing 15 jawans on the spot in the jungles of Naugarh in Chandauli district, 75 kilometres from Varanasi. Later in December, they also blew up a couple of stone cutting factories in the same area.Earlier, two bomb explosions had rocked the state capital and in a train near Faizabad on the eve of the Independence Day in 2002. However, none were injured then.

Over three dozen men believed to be member of terrorist outfits like Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and banned organisation Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) have been arrested from various parts of the state in last five years, who according to police, had definite plans for disruptive activities in the state. Large volume of explosives and ammunitions have also been recovered from the possession of these terrorists, which were reportedly being smuggled to the state for violence.

Three persons suspected to be members of outlawed Jaish-e-Mohammed terror outfit were arrested from the acquired land at the Ram Janambhoomi Babri Masjid Complex on January 30, 2004. Suspected ISI agent Mohammed Fazil Chaudhary and his associate were nabbed in Agra along with defence related documents and photograph of prohibited areas in January 2004.

Arrest of an LeT militant Haroon Rashid in New Delhi on May 20, 2005, had revealed terrorist plans to blow up Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) factory and Indian Air Force base in Kanpur. A BTech graduate, Haroon had worked at HAL, Kanpur for some time as a trainee with an aim to studying the security set-up of his two targets.

Significantly, Lucknow has been a transit point for terrorists since long. Athrudin, the prime accused in Red Fort shootout in New Delhi, in 2000, had connections in the city and was regularly in touch with his Lucknow associates through a PCO in Chaupatia locality. Two LeT men were arrested from Chinhat locality on May 13, 2004 along with an AK-56 rifle, five kg explosives, two detonators, two magazines and large amount of ammunitions as well as incriminating documents and maps.

Ishrat and Javed, the two LeT members, who were gunned down in Gujarat in April 2004, had visited and stayed in the city several times reportedly with an to aim to carry out a major operation in the city, but changed their plans at the last moment. On that occasion also, there were reports that LeT was particularly interested in Ayodhya. Two LeT terrorists were held from the Cantonment area of the city on May 22, 2005.

Aziz Ahmad, an accused in Mumbai blast case, was a candidate for Lok Sabha seat from Lucknow in last Parliamentary elections in May 2004.

If parties do not stand up to Naxal threats in Andhra

Barrel of the gun

If parties do not stand up to Naxal threats in Andhra, what hope is there for citizens?

Posted online: Wednesday, July 06, 2005 at 0000 hours IST

Politics in Andhra Pradesh is on the brink of a dangerous precipice. There is no other way of describing a situation when ministers have to resign from government, and political parties have to craft their strategies, at gun point. The resignation of five Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) members from the government should bring home the fact that the security situation in AP is getting precarious. There was always potential for friction between the TRS and Congress. The Congress tried to ride on the support for the Telangana movement. But since coming to power it has vacillated on the issue.

But this does not diminish the enormity of what we are witnessing in the state. TRS may have legitimate grievances, but there is no denying the fact that the Naxals are now calling the shots in Telangana. In some ways the TRS-Congress dispute has become a peripheral side show. Neither is will to face the serious question: what happens to politics when neither party can now act without fear of Naxal violence directed against them? And if political parties do not have the courage to stand up to Naxal threats, what hope is there for citizens now trapped by Naxal power?

Congress vacillations on Telangana are outdone only by its vacillations on the Naxal issue. To be fair, it inherited an enormous problem. But it has no clear strategy for dealing with it and thus preventing the Naxals from being able to mock the authority of the state almost at will. It does not have the will to crack down on the Naxals or the imagination to politically neutralise them. It emerges all the weaker for this.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Maoists 'plotting to kill' West Bengal chief minister held

From our correspondent

5 July 2005

KOLKATA — Acting on a tip-off, West Bengal police arrested three armed Maoists in Burdwan yesterday barely 12 hours before Chief Minister Buddhadev Bhattacharya's visit.

A senior official claimed that the trio had assembled to "liquidate" Bhattacharya who tops Peoples War Group (PWG) hit-list for ordering the police to pull out all stops to curb Maoist insurgency in backward districts of the Left Front-ruled eastern province.

The red-versus-red battle in Purulia, Midnapore and Bankura districts have already left 15 policemen and six ruling Communist Party of India (Marxist) cadres dead. Regarded as India’s most powerful Maoist insurgent group, PWG has a strong presence also in neighbouring Jharkhand and Orissa besides five other states.

Burdwan police chief Niraj Singh said that the rebels were caught off-guard in their jungle hideout even as they were discussing plans to ambush the CM's convoy and gun down the man they see as their enemy number one.

PWG and Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) accuse the CPM of being anti-people and claim to fight for the landless poor in the most backward parts of West Bengal. The rebels are a major headache for the ruling Marxist government.

Analysts believe that the campaign against PWG and MCC will be a long drawn and bloody affair because the Left Front government is totally against negotiations and has refused the federal government's advice to hold peace talks.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Maoists grilled

Durgapur July 4: Police today picked up four alleged CPI (Maoist) activists from different parts of Durgapur town for interrogation but did not arrest them, reports our correspondent.

The police action comes in the wake of the arrests of three CPI (Maoist) leaders on Saturday night from the Jangalmahal area of Kanksa in Durgapur subdivision.

District intelligence branch and police officials interrogated the four for several hours. The police named two of them — Debasish Chakraborty and Shantimoy Akure of the Coke Oven area.

Warned by Naxals, TRS walks out on YSR

Tuesday July 5 2005 00:00 IST

HYDERABAD/ NEW DELHI: The Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS), demanding a separate Telangana state, on Monday pulled out five of its six ministers from the Andhra Pradesh government and threatened to leave the UPA coalition at the Centre, capping serious differences with the Congress over the handling of the Naxal problem.

While one of the five ministers faxed his resignation from the US where he was on a tour, the sixth revolted, saying he would not quit the Y S Rajasekhara Reddy government. The TRS took the decision after the Naxals issued them an ultimatum to either quit or face bullets.

The TRS, unhappy with the Congress because “not much progress” has been made on the Telangana statehood issue, has also been protesting the Andhra police action against Naxalites.

Chief Minister Rajasekhara Reddy, whose government does not face any threat because of the majority his party enjoys in the 294-member Assembly, said a decision on their resignation will be taken at the “appropriate time”.

Union Minister Pranab Mukherjee, who heads the UPA sub-committee on Telangana, told reporters in Ahmedabad-he's on a tour of flood-hit Gujarat-he was confident that the problem would be resolved. “I am in touch with TRS leaders. The issue will be sorted out,” he said.

In New Delhi, Congress spokesman Anand Sharma said that AICC general secretary Digvijay Singh, in charge of party affairs in the state, was also in touch with TRS leaders.

Speaking at a press conference, TRS chief and Union Labour Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao said: “We will decide whether to stay in the UPA or not after meeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and seeing their response to our demand.”

The TRS, which has five members in the Lok Sabha and two ministers at the Centre, fought in alliance with the Congress in last year's Lok Sabha and Assembly elections.

Four of its Andhra ministers-T Harish Rao, A Chandrasekhar, Capt Lakshmikanta Rao and Vijayarama Rao-met Governor Sushil Kumar Shinde and submitted their resignation to him this morning.

N Narasimha Murthy, on a visit to the US, faxed his communication from there. Santosh Reddy, the sixth minister, defied the party directive saying he was not party to a “unilateral” decision to quit the cabinet.

Bihar: Uproar in the South, Strike in the North

Saji Cherian

Source:South Asia Intelligence Review [SAIR

Research Associate, Institute for Conflict Management

An attack, similar in scale and execution to the Koraput incident of February 6, 2004, in Orissa, and the Surguja incident of May 7, 2005, in Chhattisgarh, was staged by Left-Wing extremists (also known as Naxalites) of the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) on June 23, 2005, in the Madhuban block of East Champaran district of Bihar. In a synchronised fashion, a large group of Naxalites attacked close to nine places in the area, including the police station, block office, post office, two banks and a petrol pump, besides the homes of Rashtriya Janata Dal Member of Parliament from the Sheohar constituency, Sitaram Singh, and two of his supporters.

In the resultant gun-battle following the attack, which spilled into the neighbouring Sheohar and Sitamarhi districts, twenty Naxalites, four security force personnel and two civilians were killed, including Moiuddin Mian, an 'area commander' of the erstwhile Maoist Communist Centre ( MCC).

Apart from the intensity of the attack, alarm was also raised when senior State police officials confirmed that Nepalese Maoists were also involved in the attack. Bihar Director-General of Police (DGP), Ashish Ranjan Sinha, pointed to persons with 'Mongoloid features' among the attackers, adding, "we have no clear evidence yet to show that it was a joint operation, but it cannot be ruled out." Officials at the Centre, however, have tried to downplay the possibility of involvement of Nepalese Maoists arguing that all the Naxalite posters and pamphlets found at the incident site were in Hindi and the literature seized was either in Maithili or Bhojpuri (local dialects).

Although the active involvement of Nepalese Maoists in the attack remains disputed, their growing co-operation with the Naxalites cannot be denied. In 2004, both groups had formed a 'Bihar-Nepal Border Co-ordination Committee' and this co-ordination has often involved sheltering each other's cadres and sharing expertise. On June 22, 2005, for instance, the Indian police arrested four Nepalese Maoists, identified as 'Battalion Commander' of the '16th Brigade' Nirmal Bishwokarma, 'Dhanusha district Committee' member Raju Mandal, Prakash Sahani and 'section commander' Anil Rai, who were undergoing treatment at a private clinic in Darbhanga in Bihar. This was only the latest in a string of arrests of Nepalese Maoists in Bihar, dating back to February 2003.

The debate over the involvement of the Nepalese Maoists in the Madhuban attack is, however, at best a distraction from the real problem at hand, and that is the increasing clout of the Naxalites in the State of Bihar. In this, the rebels have realized the classic Maoist dictum, "Sheng Tung, Chi Hsi": "Uproar [in the] East; Strike [in the] West", articulating the principles of distraction on the one hand and concentration on the other. Even as the state's efforts were concentrated in the 'worst affected' southern districts, the Maoists had consolidated their presence in the northern border areas, and the attack at Madhuban was essentially an open declaration of this consolidation.

Apart from the traditional stronghold districts of Patna, Gaya, Aurangabad, Arwal, Jehanabad, Rohtas, Jamui, Bhojpur and Kaimur in South and Central Bihar - in the vicinity of the affected districts of Jharkhand - the CPI-Maoist is increasingly establishing its presence in the northern districts of West Champaran, East Champaran, Sheohar, Sitamarhi, Madhubani, Muzzaffarpur and Darbangha districts, neighbouring Maoist-affected areas in Nepal.

This extension has been far from invisible. After the Madhuban attack, Vinay Kumar, District Magistrate of East Champaran admitted that, "for the last two to three years, Naxalites have been trying to establish a base in these parts." It was in 2001 that the Maoists marked their presence in Sheohar district for the first time, when they attacked the Dekuli Police Station and decamped with six rifles and a large amount of ammunition. In January 2002, they attacked the police outpost in Uktha in Sitamarhi district; in December 2003, in a joint operation by Sheohar and Sitamarhi police personnel, three Naxalites, including the 'area commander' Satyam, were killed in the Barahi village in Sitamarhi. The Naxalite influence across the northern areas can be gauged by the fact that, following the recent incidents in East Champaran, the Sitamarhi District Superintendent of Police sounded a red alert in all 22 police stations in his jurisdiction, warning them of a possible Naxalite attack on any of the stations.

The Union Government has also recently confirmed the growing Naxalite presence in the East Champaran district by placing the district under the Security Related Expenditure (SRE) scheme. To enable the States to undertake more effective anti-Naxalite operations, the Ministry of Home Affairs "reimburses 75-100 per cent of the expenditure incurred on security related items." The scheme, which commenced on April 1, 1996, currently covers 76 districts in nine States. Apart from the East Champaran district, the other districts under the scheme in Bihar are Aurangabad, Gaya, Jehanabad, Rohtas, Nalanda, Patna, Bhojpur, Kaimur, West Champaran, Sitamarhi, Arwal, Nawada and Jamui.

The spread of left wing extremism in Bihar has been enormously facilitated by the sheer and endemic lack of human development, a crumbling State administrative machinery, and decaying infrastructure. The Naxalites have taken advantage of this widespread 'retreat of governance', not only in establishing a network of extortion, imposing 'levies' and 'revolutionary taxes', but also initiating 'developmental works' in some areas. In the Imamganj, Dumuriya, Koti and Barachhatti areas of Gaya district, for instance, the Maoists are developing small-scale irrigation projects; in Khajura village of the Dumuriya Block, they have been involved in the construction of a small dam. The erstwhile MCC had earlier declared the formation of a 'guerilla zone' in the Imamganj area; Dumuria lies adjacent to it.

Within this context, the involvement of Nepalese Maoists in an incident or incidents in Bihar is, at worst, a peripheral concern. The Naxalite problem is essentially an internal security issue and nothing can dilute the State Government's responsibility to maintain law and order in its districts. Regrettably, Naxalite violence in Bihar overlays a much wider breakdown of the criminal justice system, and the State has persistently neglected issues of policing and the need to develop adequate capacities of response to various challenges of internal security. The Crime in India - 2003 report, published by the National Crime Records Bureau, indicates that Bihar has a ratio of 1:1652 in terms of actual police strength to the estimated mid-year population of 2003, the worst in the country. By comparison, Andhra Pradesh has a ratio of 1:1052; Chhattisgarh, 1:1061, Jharkhand (which was formerly part of Bihar), 1:1333; and Orissa, 1:1072. Sections of the Bihar Police continue to use the antiquated World War I vintage bolt-action .303 rifles and other obsolete equipment, as compared to the Japanese-made Pump Action Single Barrel Gun and sophisticated Chinese-made communication equipment that was seized from the Naxalites after the encounter in East Champaran. On June 11, 2005, DGP Sinha announced that the Union Government had approved an INR 1.02 billion plan to modernize the Bihar police. Unfortunately, considering the lackadaisical State bureaucracy, the effects of this largesse will, at best, be uncertain.

In the meanwhile, the Maoist consolidation continues, not only in terms of territory, but in dealing effectively with past turf wars and internecine struggles. The Ministry of Home Affairs Annual Report 2004-2005 had noted that, in 2004, "In Bihar the Naxal violence as well as deaths increased significantly by over 29 per cent and about 34 per cent respectively mainly on account of increasing belligerence of the CPML-PW that clashed extensively, alongside the MCCI, with the CPML (Liberation)" [Emphasis added]. It is significant that, at the beginning of year 2005, the CPI-Maoist released a statement declaring a unilateral ceasefire with the CPI-ML (Liberation) and this declaration was again reiterated on May 25. According to the statement, the ceasefire decision had been taken "to stop the loss being suffered by the allies and concentrate on the larger objective of the Naxal movement and to fight the class enemies." It is this 'larger objective' that had led the People's War Group (PWG) and the Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) to merge in September 2004 - and the consequences of this merger are currently being felt across the entire Naxalite belt along India's eastern board.

Regrettably, while the rebels become more focused and coordinated in their activities across wide geographical areas of the country - and synchronize their activities with sympathetic groups abroad, including the Nepalese Maoists - there is little evidence of comparable coordination or sense of shared purpose across the afflicted States, each of which continues to pursue arbitrary, often contradictory, and almost uniformly ineffective, patterns of response.

Five TRS ministers quit AP govt

Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad | July 04, 2005 10:08 IST
Last Updated: July 04, 2005 14:47 IST

Five Telangana Rashtra Samithi ministers on Monday quit the Congress-led coalition ministry in Andhra Pradesh, even as S Santosh Reddy, minister for transport, raised a banner of revolt and refused to resign.

While four ministers -- G Vijayarama Rao, T Harish Rao, A Chandrasekhar and V Lakshmikantha Rao -- handed over
their resignation letters to Governor Sushilkumar Shinde, Nayini Narasimha Reddy, who is away in the United
States, faxed his resignation to the Raj Bhavan.

But Reddy's refusal to quit has embarrassed the TRS.

Speaking to newsmen, Vijayarama Rao said they were forced to pull out of the Congress-led Cabinet due to the 'anti-Telangana' actions and decisions of the state government, particularly the hostile attitude of Chief Minister Dr Y S Rajasekhar Reddy.

He said the chief minister went ahead with the Pulichintala and Polavaram irrigation projects to benefit coastal Andhra disregarding TRS' objections.

Rao said the state government also aborted the peace initiative and launched an all-out offensive against the Maoists and other Naxalite groups.

The TRS ministers' resignations came just hours before the chief minister embarks on a three-nation tour on Monday evening.

There is no immediate threat, though, to the stability of the AP government. The Congress has 185 members in the 294-member state assembly. The TRS has 26.

Speaking to newsmen, Reddy said: "There is no need for me to resign from the state Cabinet. If K Chandrasekhar Rao (TRS president and Union labour minister) wants the six ministers in the state Cabinet to quit, he and A Narendra (Union Minister of State for Rural Development) must also resign from the Union Cabinet."

"I will quit the Cabinet as well as my assembly membership only if all in the TRS members quit their posts. Otherwise, it is not democratic to force a decision on me. I am only responding to the call of my conscience. If will consult my supporters and constituents before deciding the future course of action in a democratic manner," he declared.

Three policemen killed in Naxal attack

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Nagpur, July 4: Three policemen were killed and two others, including a sub-inspector, were seriously injured when a group of Naxalites attacked them at a police assistance booth at Phulbodi in Gadchiroli district, police said.

The two policemen injured in the attack yesterday were admitted to a private nursing home here.

The ultras opened indiscriminate firing on police party which lasted for about half an hour.

Top police officials have rushed to the area, sources said.

The three policemen killed in the attack have been identified as Dilip Unake (Wardha), Shravan Usendi and Sumajis Dugga (both Gadchiroli).

Meanwhile, as part of drive against Naxal menace, the Gadchiroli police yesterday organised a rally to create awareness among local residents. (Agencies)

Sunday, July 03, 2005

TRS under pressure from Maoists

DH News Service Hyderabad:

The ultra group has served an ultimatum to TRS members to either resign from the state and Central cabinets or be prepared to die.

With the Andhra Pradesh police resuming encounters and the retaliatory violence by the Naxalites, the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) is under tremendous pressure.

It is already under siege with at least 500 of its elected members in mandals and panchayats across Telangana putting in their papers scared by threats form the Maoists who blame the TRS leadership for not struggling hard enough to achieve a separate state of Telangana.

Last week’s killing of a top leader, Riaz Khan, of the Jana Shakti group by police in Karimnagar and the retaliatory violence by the Naxalites has TRS men and women scurrying for safety.

The TRS which is an ally of the Congress and is part of the Y S Rajasekhara Reddy cabinet has urged the government to go slow on the Naxalites or it would be forced to quit the cabinet. There are five TRS ministers of whom three are reported to have already conveyed their threat to the Congress. Three legislators too have reportedly threatened to resign from the assembly to express their opposition to the killings. The TRS has suggested that a judicial enquiry be ordered into the Karimnagar encounter in which Riaz and three others were killed but the Congress is in no mood to oblige as is evident from the statement of Home Minister K Jana Reddy that encounters would not stop until the Naxalites stop their attacks. While there is no danger to the ministry in the event of the threat being carried out since the Congress is in a majority even without TRS support, it would nevertheless pressurise the Congress government and leave it open for attacks by the main Opposition, the Telugu Desam Party.

The main concern of the TRS is the safety of its leaders and elected representatives. They were served an ultimatum by the Maoist leadership which supports the formation of a separate Telangana state to either resign from their posts in the state and Central governments by June 15 or be prepared to die. They killed three TRS men to give the message that they mean business. Naxalites believe that the TRS has forgotten the cause of Telangana in the comfort of cabinet berths in Hyderabad and New Delhi. An anguished TRS president and Union Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao appealed to Naxalites to kill him if necessary but not his party members. The threat has worked with at least 500 elected representatives resigning from their posts. Although the resignations have not been accepted it has affected the functioning of various grassroots organisations.

Injured maoist Naxal flees hospital

Jamshedpur, July 3: A suspected Maoist rebel fled the MGM Medical College Hospital’s emergency ward this morning where he was admitted for treatment.

The accused, who had given his name as Vinay Kumar Saha, had been caught with a revolver from near Gurunanak Hotel at Bhilaipahadi area late last night.

The police have arrested two more suspected rebels, Ikram-ul Haque and Mohammed Matlub, both residents of Midnapore district of West Bengal. A police team will soon go to Midnapore to verify the whereabouts of the two.

The police have sent Haque and Matlub to judicial custody and sounded a red-alert to trace the absconding youth.

According to the police, late yesterday night some local youths nabbed a youth who was moving suspiciously near the Gurunank Hotel.

When the replies to their questions were unconvincing, the locals frisked him. They recovered a revolver from him.

The locals gathered in large number and thrashed Saha severely. Subsequently, the locals spotted two more strangers near the Guru Nanak Hotel. Suspecting them to be Saha’s accomplice, they caught hold of the two and beat them too.

The residents handed the three over to the police, who rushed them to the MGM Medical College Hospital.

Saha, who had lost his conscious, was given saline and the two others were discharged from the hospital after first-aid.

In the morning, two constables were deployed to keep a guard on Saha, who was still unconscious.

But at around 8.15 am, he fled the hospital on the plea of going to bathroom.

The Mango mufassil police station officer-in-charge N. Khan said Saha had given a fake address.

He added that a team of police officials would go to Midnapore to get the addresses of the other two verified.

Stung by YSR, TRS men run to KCR


Surf 'N' Earn -Sign innow

HYDERABAD/ELURU: TRS leaders on Sunday vowed to take a final decision on whether to continue in the government or not in the next couple of days.

The TRS leaders who held a marathon meeting in New Delhi on Sunday on how the government was handling the naxalite issue and the "uncharitable" comments being made by chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy and sports minister M Satyanarayana Rao, felt that they should not wait to be told to go out by the Congress.

According to the party sources, the state leaders have reportedly told TRS president K Chandrasekhar Rao that the chief minister was behaving in a "high-handed manner" on the issues raised by the party during the last one year.

They also took objection to the statement of the chief minister saying that TRS was indulging in doublespeak on the naxalite issue out of fear and the statement of Satyanaryana Rao that TRS was free to go out of government if it so desires.

TRS leaders reiterated that the encounter in which the Janashakti leader Riyaz was killed was a fake one and that the government was misleading the people. Speaking to reporters on Sunday evening before leaving for New Delhi, Union minister and TRS leader A Narendra said that people were being dragged out of their homes and shot dead in the name of encounters and demanded that it should put an end to such operations.
Talking to reporters at Palakole near Eluru during his Nagara Bata programme, the chief minister took potshots at TRS stand on the naxalite issue. He said the TRS was indulging in double speak as they were afraid of them and it would be waste of time to talk about it.

Naxalite trio held in forest swoop

Burdwan, July 3: Three CPI (Maoist) leaders were picked up last night from a forest in Burdwan where they had assembled for a secret conclave.

They have been identified as Prasanta Roy, Gautam Bhattacharya and Ajit Haldar.

The police intelligence wing is particularly perturbed as the arrests were made barely 12 hours before the chief minister drove into the Durgapur Projects Ltd guesthouse, 25 km from where the Naxalites were meeting.
On his way back to Calcutta from Purulia, Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee had made a stopover in Durgapur.

District police chief Niraj Singh said a team that raided Jangalmahal in the Kanksa area, about 170 km from Calcutta, caught the rebels off guard.

Bhattacharya, said to be from Sonarpur in South 24-Parganas, is a civil engineer who passed out from then Regional Engineering College, Durgapur, in 1981, the police said. They also claimed that the catch was a major success. “We have found documents and blueprints for making explosive devices, which will lead to more arrests and information about Naxalite activities in neighbouring Bankura, Purulia and West Midnapore,” an officer said.

The three rebel leaders were produced in Durgapur court today and remanded in police custody for 10 days.

“They had come from other districts and taken shelter in the forest to plan subversive activities,” said Singh.

Roy, a resident of Onda in Bankura, used to stay at Andal in Durgapur. Haldar, from Hanskhali in Nadia, had also taken shelter in Durgapur.

“We have found in the papers plans to attack or blow up police stations. There were also notebooks with details of how tribals of Bankura, Purulia and West Midnapore are ‘exploited’ and how they could be freed,” Singh said.

Suspected Naxalites here have pasted posters in and around the railway station, the office of the district magistrate and the medical college and hospital claiming responsibility for the murder of CPM activist Basanta Dutta.

On June 7, a gang of five had raided Dutta’s home and hacked him to death.

The police said Jangalmahal was a safe corridor for the rebels as it provided easy access to hideouts in Jharkhand, West Midnapore, Birbhum, Bankura and Purulia.

One naxalite kiled in Guntur

Staff Reporter

GUNTUR: One naxalite of the CPI (Maoist) was killed in an exchange of fire with the police in Nakarekallu mandal on Sunday morning.
The Guntur Superintendent of Police, V.C. Sajjanar, a police party on a combing mission in the Gullapalli forest area came under fire from the Maoists.
The police returned the fire, killing the naxalite. Mr. Sajjanar said one .303 bore rifle and 26 rounds of ammunition, were found near the slain Maoist, who was yet to be identified.
Other material recovered included one tapancha, one claymore mine, three Manpack communication sets, two grenades, five kitbags, a bundle of wire and a detonator. Rs. 2 lakhs cash was also recovered.

Tribal presence among Naxalites alarms Centre

Monday July 4 2005 00:00 IST
NEW DELHI: Though there is no evidence to suggest that Nepalese Maoists too were involved in the recent violence in Madhuban, the presence of Shiks among the Naxalites has alarmed the Home Ministry.

The security agencies have pointed out that persons from Charu tribes, who have mongoloid features, were mistaken as Nepalese Maoists by the state police.

Meanwhile, stung by the growing Naxal violence, the Home Ministry has decided to adopt a hard line in dealing with the Naxalites. At the recent meeting of the Coordination Committee held in Hyderabad, it was decided that individual states would no longer be free to devise their own strategy to deal with the Naxalites.

This is a change from Home Minister Shivraj Patil's earlier assertion that the Centre would only play a supportive role and leave it to the states to frame their own policy to deal with the Communist Party of India (Maoists) cadres.

Earlier, the Strategic Policy Group (SPG) of the government headed by the Cabinet Secretary and comprising three chiefs of the armed forces, secretaries of Defence, Foreign and Home, Director of IB and the RAW Secretary had recommended that the Home Ministry formulate a strategy to deal with the Naxalites. It had advocated that there should be no dialogue with the extremists till they lay down arms.
The Coordination Committee also decided to create two hubs, at Hyderabad and Jharkhand, to coordinate operations across the 75 districts affected by Naxal violence. It was also decided to set up two task forces to carry out anti-Naxal operations. States and the Centre, it is understood, not only agreed to carry out joint operations but also to “hot pursuit'' across the state boundaries.

This decision is in line with the SPG recommendation of strong action against the Left wing extremists in Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh

CHICKMAGALUR : Combing operations not affected: SP

Sunday July 3 2005 12:50 IST

CHICKMAGALUR: In spite of the adverse climatic condition that is prevailed in the district due to monsoon, the combing operations for the naxalites have not been stopped, said Superintendent of Police B K Singh.

Speaking to media persons here on Saturday, he said with adverse climatic conditions coupled with non-co operation from the tribals and residents, they are finding it difficult to intensify their activity in the region.

However, regarding reports of retreating of naxalite leader Sudhakar Reddy of Andra Pradesh to his home state, the SP declined to comment.

Three Naxalites arrested in West Bengal

Press Trust of India

Burdwan (West Bengal), July 3, 2005

Three Naxalites were arrested from West Bengal's Burdwan district, a senior police official said on Sunday.

Superintendent of Police NK Singh said police arrested the three from Bamonnara jungle under Kaksa police station area on Saturday night.

Singh said many documents and Naxalite literature was recovered from them.

He said one the arrested Naxalite belongs to Durgapur while the other two were from Ondal area.

Cong govts face naxalite heat


HYDERABAD: Fearing a strong retaliation by Maoist and Janashakti naxalites following Friday morning’s encounter killing of Janashakti leader Riyaz Khan, the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) mounted pressure on the Congress on Saturday and threatened to pull out from the governments at the Centre and state if ‘fake encounters’ were not halted.

TRS president and Union labour minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has reportedly conveyed this to some Congress leaders in New Delhi, it is learnt. The TRS leadership is under pressure from the extremist groups to fight for the cause of Telangana and against encounter killings.

On Saturday, three TRS ministers in the state cabinet and three MLAs threatened to resign from the ministry and Assembly posts respectively.

Speaking to reporters after an informal party meeting here to discuss the situation and the possible repercussions, TRS ministers T Harish Rao, S Santhosh Reddy and A Chandrasekhar demanded a judicial probe by a sitting High Court judge into the death of Riyaz and three others in Karimnagar district on Friday. They maintained that the TRS was taking this incident seriously as the party was a part of the government and responsible for such incidents.

The three TRS MLAs who threatened to resign included E Rajender, M Satyanarayana Reddy and K Nagesh.

The party will formulate future course of action on the issue in the next couple of days after watching the reaction from senior Congress leaders, TRS sources said.

In the past few months, the TRS leadership has been under extreme pressure from the naxalite groups who sought the party’s clear stand on the separate Telangana issue. A large number of the party’s mandal-level leaders had quit their posts in the light of threats issued by the Maoists and Janashakti extremists. A distraught Chandrasekhar Rao had to issue an open appeal to the naxalites to spare the party cadre and instead kill him for the delay in achieving the Telangana state.

The Congress leaders, meanwhile, dismissed the latest threat of TRS as mere pressure tactic. "We are not depending on the TRS for survival. In fact the TRS needs us more,"a Congress leader said.

Student dies in naxalite blast


HYDERABAD: In an act to avenge the killing of Janashakti leader Riyaz Khan by police on Friday, suspected Maoists triggered a blast at the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Hospital (MGM) in Warangal town on Saturday morning killing one person.

Kota Shankar (25), an ITI student of Nachanapally village of Duggondi mandal of Warangal, who had come to the hospital for treatment, died on the spot. Twelve people, including five police personnel and a convict Baitha Anand were injured in the blast.

The blast was targeted at a police party who were on prisoners’ escort duty. Every Saturday, prisoners from Warangal jail are brought to MGM hospital for treatment. K Rajaiah, a sympathiser of Janashakti, was among those brought to the hospital.

Warangal police superintendent Stephen Ravindra said that crude bombs were used in the blast. "No naxalite group has so far claimed responsibility for the blast, but we are suspecting that it is the handiwork of CPI (Maoist) party,” he said.

Home minister K Jana Reddy blamed the Maoists for the Warangal blast and said that the government was determined to curb violence with an iron hand.

Jana Reddy said the government will pay an exgratia of Rs 5 lakh to the student’s family and Rs 9 lakh to the family of head constable who was shot dead by Maoists in Vizianagaram district.

Toeing the police line on Riyaz’s death, Jana Reddy said the encounter was real and not a fabricated one.

Riyaz Khan’s body was cremated at Kavali near Nellore on Saturday. Riyaz’s wife Laxmi Devi has demanded repost-mortem of the body.

Naxals in AP retaliate as police step up offensive

DH News Service Hyderabad:

One person was killed and five policemen along with six others were wounded when naxals set off a bomb in a hospital.

The police-naxalite battle has once again flared up in Andhra Pradesh with the police gunning down a top leader and three others of the Jana Shakti group of naxalites on Friday in Karimnagar district.

In retaliation,the naxalites set off a bomb in the outpatient block of a government hospital in Warangal on Saturday morning killing one person and injuring 11 others of whom five were policemen.

In Nalgonda district, naxalites set on fire five AP State Road Transport Corporation buses on National Highway 9 after forcing the passengers out to protest against the arrest of three top leaders including two women of the Rajanna group of Jana Shakti naxalites.

According to Warangal District Superintendent of Police K Srinivas Reddy, normally on Saturdays undertrials are brought to the MGM Hospital in the town for consultation and treatment as outpatients. They are accompanied by several policemen who perhaps were targeted by naxalites in retaliation of the Karimnagar encounter, he said.

Or perhaps the naxalites wanted to help one of their comrades who was brought to the hospital along with 14 other undertrials, to escape. There were 22 policemen escorting the undertrials. The bomb was placed in a tiffin box which was kept under some debris as the flooring of the ward has been dug up. It was apparently set off from a distance once the police party arrived with the undertrials. “We are investigating from all angles,” Mr Reddy told the media.

On Friday, the police scored a major hit by killing a top leader of Jana Shakti group of naxalites in an alleged encounter on the outskirts of Mohinikunta village in Karimnagar district. Riaz, alias Venkateswarlu, a member of the Central Committee of the party, had participated in last October’s peace talks with the government. While the police gave out the usual story of an encounter, a spokesman of the party Chandranna alleged that Riaz was picked up by the police in Hyderabad along with three others, taken to Karimnagar and shot dead.

He demanded an inquiry by the High Court into the incident. Riaz was a native of Nellore and had discontinued engineering degree to join the naxalites in early 1990s. He rose quickly in the party hierarchy after it split into two. Those killed along with him have been identified as Karimnagar district committee secretary Vijay alias Srisailam and two dalam members, Raju, bodyguard of Riaz and Gautam, a courier.

However, AP Home Minister K Jana Reddy said that the encounter was “real” and that it was not true that Riaz and others were picked up in Hyderabad. Police chief Swaranjit Sen said the group had been involved in 20 killings and had extorted Rs 5 crores.

On the arrests of three top leaders of the Rajanna group of Jana Shakti the Nalgonda district police said they were wanted in the killing of a top leader of a rival group of Jana Shakti naxalites, M V Prasad and his wife last week. The police recovered weapons and Rs 50 lakh in cash from them, they claimed.

According to some sources, the killing of Riaz was facilitated by information provided by the Rajanna group to avenge the killing of M V Prasad and his wife.

Meanwhile, the police have sounded a red alert in the naxalite-stronghold districts in the state and all those on naxalite hit list have been warned to leave for safer areas.