Saturday, July 16, 2005

Maoists establish corridor across Nepal, India: West Bengal CM

Maoists establish corridor across Nepal, India: West
Bengal CM

A senior state official of India has said that (Indian) Maoist guerrillas have joined hands with their counterparts in Nepal and established a corridor through bordering state of Bihar.

Chief Minister of West Bengal state of India, Buddhadev Bhattacharjee, said that Maoists, originating in Andhra Pradesh state, had struck in Bankura and Purulia (in West Bengal) last week and fled to (neighbouring state of) Jharkhand taking advantage of the difficult terrain of forests and hills, official PTI news agency reported.

Replying to a debate on the budget of Home Department in the state assembly, Bhattacharjee –who leads a leftist government in the state—said the ultras have joined hands with Maoists in Nepal and established a corridor through Madhubani in Bihar, he said.

The insurgents had launched a daring raid at Madhubani last month leading a section of Indian security officials blaming Nepali rebels of taking part in it. The CPN (Maoist), however, promptly refuted such allegations saying that it was against their party’s policy to launch joint raids in another country.

Bhattacharjee said it was necessary that neighbouring states should also deal with these extremist elements with determination and a clear-cut policy.

Observing that the recent merger of CPI-ML (People’s War) and Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) to form the Communist Party of India (Maoist) had added a new dimension to their anti-state activities, Bhattacharjee said his government was trying to counter the threat by taking a series of administrative measures including sustained combing operations.

Steps had also been initiated to undertake specific development projects in these three districts, he said. by July 16 05

Maoists have a playing field in WEST BENGAL

Kanchan Siddiqui

in Majhgoria (Bankura)
July 15. – Dulukdihi and Majhgoria, the two south-Bengal villages in Purulia and Bankura districts are vulnerable to the Maoists. They are yet to recover from last Saturday’s shock.
Though hundreds of policemen with their EFR counterparts make their presence felt, the villagers continue to suffer for decades.
Unlike other Bengal villages, both the villages have police camps present there since 1988. The police brandish their firearms everyday in the guise of curbing the Naxalite menace.
The state had to pay millions of rupees towards infrastructure cost. The Barikul investigation centre was elevated to a police station on 15 April and after the mishap, the police station has been further promoted with an IC posted there.
After the Barikul, Bandwa incidents, Mr Anil Biswas, state CPI-M secretary said it was an attempt to disrupt development work there. Villages like Dulukdihi and Majhgoria reel under acute poverty and still do not have the basic amenities. They lack sanitation, drinking water, education facilities, besides poor power supply.
The very location in Majhgoria village where Raghunath Murmu, the CPI-M leader of Ranibandh zonal committee, was gunned down bears the mark of neglect .
The small village is the border between Bankura and Midnapore (West). A number of houses there have voter identities in both the districts. The locality is shared by the Barikul police station in Bankura and Belpahari police station in Midnapore (West).
According to Arabinda Kahturia of Kundalpahari, “Raghunath, the quack, was our only source of health care in the 12 villages of Belpahari and Barikul. He is no more and we are left in the hands of destiny.” Raghunath’s political aide, Bablu Mudi, had gone to his dispensary to fetch medicine for his child and died to a Maoist’s bullet.
Majhgoria still has bare electricity poles erected in front of the empty dispensary. The poles were put up three years ago but there is no
connection with the grid supply.
Villages in the Barikul, Bandwan and Belpahari
police station areas in Bankura, Purulia and Midnapore (West) in the bordering stretches have met the same fate.
Mr Biswanath Hembram of Majhgoria said: “We have to travel at least 40 km to reach a primary health centre and the students have to travel 80 km to school everyday.”
The Bankura DM, Mr PK Mishra, visited the spot in Majhgoria the day after the bloodbath occurred. He said: “There are many scopes for development here. We have to start the food-for-work programme.”
The CPI-M has promised to support Bablu Mudi’s family. Since 2002, the police have been suggesting that the place needs to be developed to help combat the Naxalite menace. Police said: “The Naxalites will buy moral support among the deprived class so long asthe state remains apathetic.”
The police plan to organise extensive health camps and help give them small-bank loan to block Naxalite ingress. The SP, Bankura, Mr K Jayraman said: “We have decided to help operate health and loan camps soon.” The district CPI-M secretary, Mr Amio Patra, disagrees.
He said: “If lack of development is why the Maoists are operating in Hooghly, Durgapur and Kanksa in Burdwan, we have to wreck havoc against the intruders by organising mass resistance groups.”

Police tab on Maoists , west bengal

Kunal Banerjee in Chinsurah

July 15. – If one sees the abbreviation CPIM, one takes for granted that it stands for the Communist Party of India (Marxist) ruling the state for more than a quarter century. But with the Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) and the People’s War (PW) merging them last year to form the Communist Party of India (Maoist), things have changed because its abbreviated form is also CPI-M.
And that the Marx versus Mao battle is gradually intensifying, it is evident from the fact that the so-called Maoists have killed more than 10 Marxist leaders and cadres in the last couple of years.
Most of the unfortunate incidents, including murders of some police personnel by the Maoists, took place in Midnapore, Purulia and Bankura. The police, however, could arrest many Maoist top guns from the districts of Burdwan, Hooghly and North 24 -Parganas also. A Maoist senior leader was arrested from Dankuni in Hooghly in May, this year. So the police have become alert.
And now after the killing of Prabal Sengupta, OC-Barikul police station, and successive killings of three Marxist leaders, the Hooghly police have tightened security in areas bordering Midnapore, Burdwan and Bankura.
The District Intelligence Branch (DIB) has been instructed to intensify its vigil to prevent any untoward incident. In Hooghly, however, the Maoists have so far not resorted to any violent activity. “But security has been beefed up at the police camps in the bordering area in the Goghat and Khanakul police stations in Arambagh sub-division,” Mr Supratim Sarkar, SP-Hooghly, said today.
There are six police camps at Karnapur,Sundarpur, Badangunj, Salempur and Gheotia where police strength has been augmented recently. The higher officials think that the measures that have been taken so far is satisfactory as far as the Maoist activities in the district is concerned. “If they try to spread their organisation here that will not escape our vigilance,” said a senior police official.
But rumours continue to circulate there that after intensified police patrolling in Bankura, Midnapore and Burdwan Maoist guerrillas are trying to take shelter in some villages of Hooghly. “We are watching the developments,” an official said.
After the Maoist onslaught, people have become panicky and even a poster signed by an organiszation apart from the known ones is creating a ripple. The police apparently are not giving these too much importance because there are quite a number of organiszations believing in the ideology of Mao Zedong. “They are not all Maoist and associated with such subversive activities. We are aware and careful about this,” a senior official said.
But unlike the Naxalite movement in the 1970s when some criminals also took advantage of the so-called “Red terror”, the Maoists’ movement now is “political” without any nexus with criminals so far.

Unable to take on Maoists, police shift focus to youths

Imran Ahmed Siddiqui

Ranibandh (Bankura), July 15: IN the Maoists’ heartland of Purulia, Midnapore and Bankura, the policemen are helpless. With no sophisticated arms, security gadgets and adequate infrastructure, they find it hard to take on the well-equipped Naxalites. So they have adopted a different approach, taking to counselling the region’s youths who are potential recruits for Maoists.

‘‘We lack the expertise to tackle Naxalites. The problem can be checked only by carrying out development work in the areas and by raising awareness among the people, especially the youths who are vulnerable and often recruited by the Maoist groups,’’ said a senior police officer at Bankura.

‘‘Officers visit villages and advise youths not to fall prey to Naxalites. Counselling sessions are conducted at police stations where officers instruct the educated youths to apply for jobs as constables,’’ he added.

At the Ranibandh station, the Inspector-in-charge, Anil Chandra Ghosh, is conducting one such session. ‘‘There has been an advertisement for recruitment of constables in CRPF. We are convincing youths who have passed their Madhyamik exams to apply for this. This is the best way to restrain them from joining the Maoists,’’ said Ghosh.

‘‘What can we do when the government is not bothered about providing adequate and sophisticated arms to match our enemies. These Maoists do not fight face-to-face, they resort to landmine blasts. We are not trained to enter the jungle terrian, nor are we provided with any device to check such blasts. So there is only one option left — to stop the vulnerable youths from joining their camp,’’ pointed out an officer of the Majgheria police camp.

Newsline visited four of the seven police camps in South Bankur. There were no telephones in any of them. In case of emergency, the only mode of communication is the wireless, which is easily intercepted by the Maoists. There is no electricity or any basic amenities like drinking water and toilets either.

‘‘Maoists hold meetings in villages at night near our camps. But who will dare to venture out. We are like prisoners in these camps,’’ said an officer.

Even the Special Task Force (STF) which was formed to tackle the Naxalite menace has proved futile due to lack of co-ordination with their counterparts in Jharkhand, the entry point of the Maoists.

Senior police officers in Bankura admitted that the morale of the force is low after the recent killings. Bankura Superintendent K Jayraman said: ‘‘There has been lack of co-ordination on the part of the police force. The Maoists know the terrain better than us. The area is surrounded with dense forests and it is practically impossible to enter the jungle and flush them out. Very soon we will have sophisticated gadgets to check the landmines.’’

A first for Yechury

KOLKATA, July 15. — “The CPI-M was born fighting against ideological deviations and will continue to fight against these forces,” Mr Sitaram Yechuri, CPI-M candidate who was elected to the Rajya Sabha, said in the Assembly complex this morning. It was for the first time in the Assembly’s history that such an interactive session was held.
He was commenting on the three party workers’ murder by Maoists in Purulia and Bankura last week.
Describing the attack as “a sporadic incident”, he said the situation was not alarming and that the state government was working in the right direction. Like his Politburo colleague, namely, the chief minister, Mr Yechuri said the Maoists did not have any links with those who had led the Naxalite movement in the state nearly 40 years ago. The recently elected Rajya Sabha members, Mr Yechuri, Mrs Brinda Karat, Mr Abani Roy, Mr Chittabrata Majumdar and Mr Arjun Sengupta today met the Left and Congress MLAs. The Trinamul MLAs boycotted the meeting as the party was against nominating two candidates who were not residents of the state.
The state finance minister, Dr Asim Dasgupta, said a closer cooperation between the MPs and the MLAs was required for better functioning of the programmes funded by the Centre. He hoped that the newly elected Rajya Sabha members would uphold the state’s interest. The Speaker, Mr HA Halim, urged them to uphold the state’s interest, besides taking up major issues that were of national importance. Mr Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay, Opposition Chief Whip, said that this meeting “was just an” eyewash” and was “held to send a message to the CPI-M central leadership that the Left MLAs here have warmly accepted two outsiders”. —

Growth mantra to fight Naxals

Saturday July 16 2005 13:19 IST

JEYPORE: Harassment by land owners, lack of job opportunities, financial insecurity and poor communication network in Narayanpatna and Bandhugam blocks of the district have put the Naxals in an advantageous position. Banking on these shortcomings, they have lured several tribal youths to their fold, posing a challenge for the district administration.

To rein in the growing Naxal influence in these areas, the administration has launched various programmes to bring the tribal youths back to the mainstream of the society.

Senior police officers including Koraput SP and officials of para military forces are on a regular visit to Naxal prone areas to build confidence and lessen the fear of radicals among the people. Regular combing operations are also being conducted in these blocks.

The revenue department has also directed the village-level para-teachers and NGOs to provide the lists of landlords and money lenders who are harassing the tribals. The field staff have been directed to visit the inaccessible pockets and interact with the tribals. Moreover, the land reforms cell is also doing its part by informing the tribals about their land rights.

The administration has also decided to organise pre-recruitment camps in Naxal-infested areas to give training to tribal youths to get jobs in different government and non-government agencies.

Sources said since the two blocks remain cut off from the district headquarters town, nearly 5000 youths are deprived of government facilities. Under such circumstances, the ultras lure the tribals to join them, said an official. The two blocks also serve as hideouts for the Naxals. Large-scale involvement of locals in Naxal activities came to the fore during the Koraput mayhem last year.

District Collector Subha Sharma said the consistent efforts of the administration would encourage the tribals to come away from the hold of the Naxals.

Senior Maoist leader killed in encounter

Visakhapatnam, July 16. (PTI): Senior Moist leader and Galikonda agricultural committee in charge Malakoti Ramanjaneyulu, alias Kailasam, was killed here today in an encounter in G K Veedhi Mandalam of Koyyuru, known to be highly naxal infested area in Vizag agency.

The deceased Maoist hails from Bhoo Ni Palli Village of Anantapuram district

Based on the information received by the police regarding a strategic meeting of naxalites, police rushed to the spot and there was exchange of fire between two parties, in which Ramanjaneyulu was killed

Police recovered large number of rifles, land mines, claymore mines and littérateur

About 11 kilos of gold and 63 lakhs rupees of cash seized from the inmates of an apartment room no 501 in Ramnagar area and arrested four persons.

When police questioned them after the arrest they said that they have a jewellery shop in Mumbai and they are doing business here in Visakhapatnam.

However police did not disclose their names because the case is yet to be investigated. Under the direct supervision of police Commissioner Koumudi, DCP Lakshmi Reddy ACP Rama Krishna conducted the raids.

Friday, July 15, 2005

'Maoist letter' claims responsibility for murders

Saturday July 16 2005 00:00 IST

KOLKATA: A letter on "behalf of the Maoists", claiming responsibility for the murder of three Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) activists, reached a TV news channel here on Friday.

The letter received by Akash Bangla channel was signed by a person, who identified himself as Bikash and claimed to represent the zonal committee of the Maoists in Purulia, Bankura and Midnapore (West) districts.

The letter said the three CPI-M men were killed last week because they were "moles of the police".

Inspector General of Police (law and order) Chayan Mukherjee, however, said a letter claiming responsibility for the killings did not provide much clue about the rebels.

The police had stepped up search operations since the attack and arrested several suspected Maoists.

The guerrillas shot dead three CPI-M men in the south Bengal districts of Purulia and Bankura on the night of July 9. A policeman was also killed in Bankura when a bomb planted by the guerrillas at the scene of the first attack exploded.

At least 17 policemen have died in Maoist attacks in these districts in the past two years.

Buddha trains guns on Naxalites

Statesman News Service

KOLKATA, July 14. — The killing of three CPI-M workers and the officer-in-charge of Barikul police station last week was carried out to take revenge, chief minister Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said in the Assembly today. He said that the police had got all information of the Maoists and their hideouts by interrogating two of their top leaders Sushil Roy and Patitpaban Halder. To take revenge of the arrest of two top leaders the Maoists had carried out the operation.
They had hatched the plan of killings at their hideout in Dharagiri in east Singbhum district of Jharkhand. They had also planned to strike two places in Bankura and Purulia districts simultaneously. He regretted that the police did not have any prior information of the attacks.
Mr Bhattacharjee said that the Maoists did not have any contacts with those who had given leadership in the Naxalite movement in the late 1960s. They do not have any ideology and believe in the philosophy of individual terrorism. He said that the Maoist leader is a Telegu-speaking person.
Mr Bhattacharjee regretted that despite all efforts a subsidiary training centre could not be set up at Borjora. The PWD could not spend the money due to its late arrival. He promised to start the centre during the current financial year.
He said that steps have been taken to improve the living condition of the poor people of Bankura and Purulia districts and develop irrigational facilities as well.
Already 1,300 self help groups have been formed in the affected areas and construction of the 14-km road from Chua to Kankrajhore would be completed and this will improve communication network, he said.

Most Maoists in West Bengal are from other States: Buddhadeb

By Our Special Correspondent

Administration suspects arms are being smuggled in; vigil stepped up along borders

Recent operation carried out was planned in a hideout in Jharkhand hills
Militancy confined to three south-western districts
Chief Minister admits intelligence lapses prior to Maoist attacks

KOLKATA: : A large majority of the Maoist militants operating in certain parts of West Bengal belong to States such as Andhra Pradesh and Jharkhand. A recent operation they carried out in the State was planned in a hideout on the hills of Jharkhand, West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said here on Thursday.

He was referring to the twin attacks by Maoists in the districts of Purulia and Bankura last week. Three leaders of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) were shot dead in the incident. A senior police official was killed when a packet abandoned by the fleeing militants exploded as he was examining it.

Maoist militancy is mainly confined to the three south-western districts of Bankura, Purulia and West Midnapore that share a border with Jharkhand. Those involved in the killings were reportedly led by a Telugu-speaking personand are believed to have fled to Jharkhand.

Replying to a call-attention notice on last week's Maoist operations, Mr. Bhattacharjee told the Assembly that the killings were to avenge the recent arrest of two top members of the outfit. The arrests were a major setback to Maoists who were reportedly trying to set up bases in parts of the State. The West Bengal Government has been reiterating that most Maoist militants operating in the State are from outside West Bengal and have no links with those involved in the naxalite movement. Vigil has been stepped up along the State's borders with Jharkhand and Orissa, through which the Maoists are reported to be trying to set up a corridor linking their bases in Andhra Pradesh to parts of West Bengal.

The administration also suspects that sophisticated arms and explosives being used by the activists are smuggled in.

The Chief Minister admitted in the House that there had been lapses on the part of the intelligence agencies prior to the Maoist attacks.

At a meeting with senior police officials earlier this week, he underlined the need to tone up the local intelligence network, particularly in areas bordering Jharkhand.


Looking at Nepal’s Maoist revolution through Indian Naxalite eyes

Here in the densely populated Ganga plains, the 10-yard strip separating Nepal and India has never been treated like a national frontier.

Land is too precious to leave it as a no-man’s land. Nepali and Indian farmers use it for grazing livestock, playing cricket or even growing vegetables.

But as the Maoist war in the Nepal tarai intensifies, the Indian fear of spillover of violence has begun to change that relaxed attitude. Along with border check points, the traditionally open dasgaja strip too is now under close security watch. India’s paramilitary Seema Suraksha Bal (SSB) now pull up rickshaw wallas if they park their tricycles on no-man’s land.

Security is stricter than before and there is talk here of introducing identity cards and barbed-wire fences to regulate crossborder movement. Still, the India-Nepal frontier is probably the most relaxed international border in the world.

The SSB guard does ask you where you are headed as you saunter across but doesn’t even blink when you answer that you're going to Panditji’s paan shop down the road.

On the Nepal side, every shopkeeper is up to date on the latest Maoist exploits. In Bihar, despite media hype about the Naxalite ‘menace’ engulfing 160 districts in 12 Indian states, people along the border seem barely aware of the activities of the Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) in Bihar or the People’s War Group (PWG) in Andhra Pradesh. The two merged last year to form the CPI-Maoist but a local teacher isn’t even aware of it.

Even after last month’s Naxalite attack on the town of Madhuban in which 21 people were killed and six government buildings razed (see: ‘Spillover’, #254), there is a surprising lack of concern about Maoist activity along the border. If the local people aren’t the least bit interested, we thought we should try to track down an Indian Maoist to ask if there was indeed collaboration with their Nepali comrades during the attack, as alleged by Bihari police.

After three days of persistent enquiry at various tea, paan and cycle repair shops, a young man claiming to be a local labour organiser sympathetic to the Maoist cause comes up outside a drugstore. He calls himself Bidrohi. He wears a hunted look, refusing to talk anywhere except in his battered Maruti.

Comrade Bidrohi is surprisingly well-informed and excessively paranoid as he drives randomly across the dry farms of northern Bihar. He believes that a capitalist conspiracy has encouraged caste confrontation in Bihar to undermine an inevitable class war. That seems logical enough, and other than his unrealistic portrayal of a global capitalist conspiracy to defeat Maoism worldwide, the comrade sounds quite articulate and convincing.

He dismisses outright the allegation that Indian Naxalites and Nepali Maoists train together in Bihar and is even more categorical in denying Nepali Maoist involvement in the Naxalite attack on the police station in Madhuban. “The Bihar police was just trying to hide its incompetence,” he says.

Bidrohi thinks state governments in Uttaranchal, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar routinely exaggerate the threat of Naxalite activity to get more funds from New Delhi for their police forces. “Unlike in Nepal, the Maoist movement in north India has not yet acquired a critical mass,” he says in Hindi, skirting potholes, “they wouldn’t risk ruthless reprisals by random attacks.”

How does that explain the landmine attack on a police van in UP last November that killed 16 people? Or the attacks in Madhuban and Bairgania? “They may have been executed for tactical gain rather than strategic reasons.” What he means is that the attacks could have been criminal rather than ideological in nature.

Bihari Naxals would be wary of joining hands with Nepali Maoists for three reasons, Bidrohi says. First, the Nepalis are better motivated, better armed and are more battle hardened. The Naxals would have to accept a secondary role in any joint exercise and that is not something the Indian comrades would relish.

Second, if the Naxalites were to be as reckless as Nepali Maoists they would be decimated in Bihar. “In Nepal, security forces look the other way when Maoists move around and do nothing as long as they aren’t directly under attack. But Bihari Naxals have simultaneously fought on two fronts for decades—the police and the private armies of landlords,” explains Bidrohi. Indeed, as we drive past mango orchards and parched paddy fields, it looks like Bidrohi is more nervous about vigilantes than the police.

Third, Bidrohi thinks the brutality of Nepali Maoists is too shocking even for India’s hardened Naxalites. “The Maoists seem to have no qualms in killing innocents, we never do that,” he argues, adding, “affinity between Maoist groups of the world over is natural and mutual cooperation between the Maoists and Naxals can’t be ruled out. But we never do joint exercises or training.”

Indian Naxalites are expecting the ruling coalition in New Delhi to launch a massive coordinated offensive against Naxalite groups all over India. “Wherever there is a Marxist government, Maoists suffer the most,” explains Bidrohi, “capitalist conspirators want to use the cover of a Marxist government in New Delhi to hit at all leftist groups.”

The Nepali Maoists seem to inspire awe and fear among Naxalite groups in India. But how come Indian Marxists are friendlier to Nepali Maoists even while they fight their own Naxals on home turf? “Perhaps they want to watch and wait for the outcome of the political experiment in Nepal before they make up their mind about armed rebellion in India,” says Bidrohi, as we make a U-turn and head back to Panditji’s paan shop.

What would his advice be to comrades in Nepal? Bidrohi replies without hesitation: “Make common cause with other political parties, without bourgeoisie democracy, a proletarian revolution is impossible. That is the reason Naxalites in India support political parties representing the downtrodden.”

With Girija Prasad Koirala’s offer of talks eliciting tempting responses from Chairman Prachanda this week, it appears that the possibility of Nepal’s mainstream political parties working with the Maoists are now higher than a unity between two fraternal Maoist parties on either side of the border.

It is also clear that the Indian establishment needs to listen to the peasants of northern Bihar and learn from Nepal’s wildfire insurgency for proof of what could happen in its soil, too. If sparks from Nepal ignite the tinder-dry Ganga plains, a full-blown Maoist rebellion could spread rapidly to Andhra Pradesh and beyond. Given the objective conditions for revolution in these badlands, that future conflagration is not just an alarmist prediction. And it could be the fear haunting ‘capitalist conspirators’ pushing the theory of a Maoist-Naxalite military alliance.

Otherwise Comrade Bidrohi’s arguments are quite sound: a common cause between Nepali Maoists and Indian Naxals will harm both of them. They may be comrades-at-arms but for now they want to fight their wars separately.

Some details have been omitted to protect identities and localities.

CPI-M wants joint anti-Maoist initiative by Centre, states


A day after West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacherjee said that Maoists from India and Nepal were co-ordinating their operations, the CPI-M today called for a joint initiative by the Centre and state governments to tackle the problem.

CPI-M politburo member Sitaram Yechuri said the Centre and states were co-operating to deal with the naxal threat. If Maoists in India were getting help from their counterparts beyond the borders, there was a need to tackle the problem jointly by the Centre and state governments, he added.

The Chief Minister told the state Assembly yesterday that the Maoists from India and Nepal were in touch with each other and had established a 'red corridor' through Bihar.

According to Bhattacherjee, the Maoists had a clear strategy, working their way up from Andhra Pradesh through Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand into West Bengal areas.

Three CPI-M local leaders were gunnned down by Maoist guerrillas in Bankura and Purulia districts last Saturday. The same night, a senior police officer probing the incident in Bankura's Majhgeria was killed when an abondoned packet he was examining blew up.

Yechuri told reporters here today that the problem of the Maoists was not alarming in West Bengal.

Asked if it was disturbing the law and order situation in the state, he said, "If that is so, the state government is quite competent to tackle it".

Naxal hoodwinks police teams, 1 cop killed

Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad | July 14, 2005 11:58 IST

A sub-inspector of police was killed and a circle inspector sustained bullet injuries in an exchange of fire between police parties from Khammam and Visakhapatnam in a hotel in the temple town of Bhadrachalam on Wednesday night.

On a tip-off, a five-member police party led by Palvancha rural sub-inspector V Ashok Kumar raided the temple town on a manhunt for an arms supplier with Maoist links who was to check into a hotel near the bus station complex.

The sub-inspector and other policemen checked into a hotel room expecting the visit of the arms supplier.

At the same time, another police team from Visakhapatnam district led by Araku inspector of police Rajendra Kumar, along with local policemen, raided the same hotel, in search of the same elusive arms dealer.

Araku police team knocked at the door of room No. 208 where Palvancha police team was staying. As soon as the door opened, there was firing from both the sides owing to mistaken identity. The exchange of fire lasted 20 minutes in which sub-inspector Ashok was killed and inspector Rajendra Kumar sustained injuries.

The firing ceased after both sides revealed their identity. The local police had no information about the arrival of the police party from Palvancha though they knew about the arrival of the police party from Araku.

It transpired that a surrendered Naxalite belonging to Adivasi Liberation Tiger Dalam (armed squad) of CPI (ML) Praja Pratighatana had misled the police promising to help them nab an arms dealer.

Naxal assault: Jharkhand’s warrior Khairwar community’s penury existence

Chatra (Jharkhand) : Khairwar, the warrior tribal community of Jharkhand’s Chatra District, was once popular for its strong and powerful presence, but today, its members have been compelled to lead a life of penury in the wake of a Naxal assault on their homes in the mid-1990s.

Chatra is the heartland of Naxalite influence in the state. Farming is the only means of income for the peasants of the area, but marauding gangs which are a constant threat, prevent them from performing their chores.

None of the 50 families in the village is able to afford two square meals a day. The community is now living in the campus of a “Bazaar Samiti”(Market committee) on the outskirts of Chatra.

Authorities say they are coming up with various schemes to rehabilitate the villagers.

“We are trying to promote women group activities in a strong way, but it’s not that only women groups are being promoted. We would like to promote men groups also. Not only that, if anyone would like to take up any activity like loans, they will be given preference. We will make sure that economic upliftment takes place along with their safety,” said Himani Pandey, District Collector of Chatra.

The Naxalites have targeted rich landowners and government offices. Police suspect that the Naxalites have links with Maoists in Nepal.

Agriculture is the primary occupation of all the tribal communities in Jharkhand with paddy being the staple crop, which is cultivated during the Kharif season. Due to lack of rainfall and alternative irrigation facilities during Rabi and summer, most of the poor tribal communities undertake dryland crop cultivation during this period besides non-timber forest produce collection, labor and migration. The advanced tribal communities like Oraons undertake cash crop cultivation with the help of irrigation pumpsets.

Electrification will have less impact on economically inactive tribal communities like the Mundas, Paharias and Santhals unless it is provided along with other services like input and market linkage, technology and knowledge transfer about cash crop cultivation, financial linkage for availing loans to purchase irrigation pumpsets and risk mitigation techniques.

Undulating terrain, high forest cover and abundant mineral resources characterize Jharkhand, which was carved out of Bihar in the year 2000. It receives high rainfall during Kharif season (primary agricultural season) and minimal or no rainfall during Rabi and summer season. The tribal population in Jharkhand is very high (7.5 million) contributing to 28 percent of the total population.

The important tribes are Mundas, Santhals, Paharias and Oraons. The average land holding size of the tribal population in Jharkhand is two acres. The tribal population of Jharkhand can be segregated into economically active and economically inactive tribals.

Economically active tribal populations constitute those tribals who have access to market, technology and irrigation infrastructure. These tribals are involved in cash crop cultivation like vegetables and oilseeds and employ advanced agricultural cropping practices (inputs like fertilizers, pesticides and implements like irrigation pumpsets and power tillers).

Their average household income from agriculture after deducting input cost is approximately Rs 40,000-Rs 50,000. Due to availability of irrigation pumpsets, they are engaged in cultivation throughout out the year even when there is no rainfall. The Oraons are an economically active tribal population residing in the South Chotanagpur belt of Jharkhand.

Economically inactive tribal population constitutes those tribal communities who are involved in subsistence level agriculture due lack of access to market, technology and credit.

They cultivate paddy during the Kharif season when there is rainfall and dryland crops (crops not requiring water) during the Rabi season. They either remain unemployed during the summer season or migrate to other areas in search of labor. Their average household income from agriculture and other activities is approximately Rs 15,000-Rs 20,000 and they can be classified as BPL (below poverty line). The Mundas residing in South Chotanagpur belt and the Santhals and Paharias residing in Northeastern Jharkhand fall under economically inactive tribals.

As far as the Naxal menace is concerned, the state’s Chief Minister, Arjun Munda, had said in March this year that he was ready to initiate a dialogue with Naxal guerrillas in the state, but within the framework of the law and only on the condition that they lay down their arms and give up armed struggle.

Naxal activities have become a major headache for successive administrations in the state, and already over 510 people have been killed in Naxal violence since Jharkhand was carved out of Bihar in November 2000.

Authorities say Jharkhand is the second worst hit state after Andhra Pradesh, with the united Communist Party of India-Naxal (CPI-Naxal) active in almost all parts of the state, running a virtual parallel administration in some places.


Wednesday, July 13, 2005

LTTE not training Nepal's Maoists in India: Police

Indo-Asian News Service

Patna, July 13, 2005|18:37 IST

Bihar has denied a report that Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers are providing military training to Nepal's Maoist insurgents in a northern district of the state bordering the kingdom.

A top police official said: "We have no such information and strongly feel that Nepal's Maoist insurgents are not being trained in the area near the Nepal border."

The state administration was disturbed by a report in the Friday edition of South Asia Tribune, an ezine - magazine published on the Internet - from Washington that said the Lankan rebels were teaching Nepalese outlaws to form human bomb squads for suicidal missions.

The report claimed the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) was running training camps in Narkatiaganj and Ghorasahan in Bihar near the Nepal border.

After a discussion with top police and intelligence officials, Governor Buta Singh said Monday that the state police had not come up with any such evidence so far.

Sources in the state home department told IANS here that the centre had also sought a report from Bihar in this connection.

Last month, alarmed by the biggest attack ever by Maoist guerrillas in Bihar, the state government urged the centre to take immediate steps to stop Maoist infiltration from Nepal. The state also asked New Delhi to beef up security along the 735-km stretch of the India-Nepal border in Bihar's northern districts.

More than 300 Maoist guerrillas, including dozens of women, had attacked the Madhuban bazaar in East Champaran district.

Bihar turning safe haven for Maoist militancy


Authorities in Bihar are concerned over reports of LTTE imparting training to Nepalese Maoists and naxalites in the state to raise human bomb squads for suicide missions and recent spurt in their activities in districts along the Indo-Nepal border.

The security establishment in Bihar went into a tizzy after the June 23 attack by CPI (Maoist) naxalites on the Madhuban police station, banks and RJD MP Sitaram Singh's house in East Champaran district and the subsequent encounter in which 20 naxalites, two policemen and a bank guard lost their lives.

Dozens of weapons, around 100 rounds of ammunition, a landmine device with 17 kgs of explosives had been recovered from different places during the mop-up operation after the Madhuban incident.

The security men have captured more than 25 naxalites, including Maoist rebels from Nepal and a suicide squad member of CPI (Maoist).

The arrest of Dipak Choudhury, a suspected suicide squad member of the outlawed outfit, from the forest on Indo-Nepal border near Bagha in West Champaran district and subsequent unearthing of a Maoist training camp on a hill on July 9 strengthened the suspicion that naxalites were being trained in carrying out suicide attacks, a top Bihar police official told PTI on condition of anonymity.

The state police headquarters here, however, maintain the intelligence inputs in this regard were being verified.

"We have gone through the reports but until and unless we get tangible evidence we can't say anything about it (the LTTE militants' running training camps on the border along Bihar). Moreover, no suicide attacks by Maoists have taken place so far," R R Verma, IG (Operation), said.

He said some pamphlets found after naxalite operation in Madhuban also warned of a major strike in North India.

"The naxalites appear to be trying to raise a large guerrilla army with the active involvement of the local youth," Verma said referring to the pamphlets which spoke of "liberating" the people from state repression.

Governor Buta Singh had already gone on record describing the naxal problem as "quite alarming" and sought deployment of BSF, CRPF and SSB on porous border to further step up patrolling and surveillance to check influx of Maoist rebels from Nepal and effectively curb Naxal activities.

The state administration is also planning to requisition army helicopters which would be used by CRPF and STF commandos of the state police to patrol the skies on the border on a regular basis and locate the training camps of militants, state Home Secretary A K Biswas told PTI.

"A formal request has already been made by the state government and we are awaiting a positive response from the Defence Ministry," Biswas said.

CPI-M, CPI-ML have 'love-hate' relationship

Press Trust of India

Kolkata, July 13: CPI-M leaders by Maoists in West Bengal but said the militants had a ‘love-hate relationship’ with the Marxists and were “often used by them for political gains.”

“We condemn political killings. But the Maoists have a love-hate relationship with CPI-M. When the relations sour, the killings follow,” CPI-ML general secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya told reporters here.

He alleged that in Nadia district, CPI-M leaders were using the Maoists to intimidate CPI-ML workers. “We have seen such relationship between the Maoists and CPI-M at local levels in districts like West Midnapore, Bankura, Purulia and now in Nadia,” he added.

When told by reporters that 11 CPI-M leaders and workers were killed by Maoists in last two years, he said “CPI-M initially used the Maoists - who have some clout at local level due to their arms power - for political gains and mobilising votes. But after some stage, the relationship backfired.”

Drawing the instances of Andhra Pradesh and Jharkhand, where the Maoists had “relations with parties like Telegu Desam party, Congress and others,” Bhattacharya said “the ultras, not having any political programme of their own, often build up relationship with ruling parties.”

From a political point of view, Bhattacharya said, though the Maoists and CPI-M stood at opposite poles, “both of them are now doing the same thing. While the CPI-M is holding negotiation with the Congress-led UPA government, the Maoists are negotiating with the Congress government in Andhra Pradesh.”

Seeking to clarify that Maoists, often referred to as naxalites, were a different breed altogether and had no relation with the naxalite forces, he said “we neither support political killings, nor negotiations with governments. Maoists have no political programme or policy and never launch any movement for the masses.”

Asked if the Maoist offensive on CPI-M cadres was a fallout of lack of development in those areas, he said “it is partly true as the areas dominated by them are remote places devoid of any development. But apart from the development issue, I think they also have definite plan for the political killings and attack on state machinery.”

Turning to the affairs of West Bengal, Bhattacharya slammed CPI-M for following the same 'anti-people' economic policies of the UPA government at Centre.

He also flayed the recent police action on Jadavpur University students and said the students' wing of CPI-ML would like to give a memorandum to President A P J Abdul Kalam who is scheduled to visit the university campus tomorrow during his one-day tour to the metropolis.

Asked about the ensuing Assembly polls in Bihar, the CPI-ML leader said his party has held talks with CPI, which has decided not to align with RJD.

Claiming that CPI-ML is the 'mainstream Left' in Bihar, he said “CPI has decided to join hands with us. We hope it will stick to its decision despite pressure from CPI-M and Congress.”


Maoists may have ISI link: Govt

Wednesday July 13 2005 13:23 IST

BHUBANESWAR: The Left wing guerillas, who last week killed five villagers in the interiors of Sambalpur district, are suspected to have links with the ISI of Pakistan and the Maoists of Nepal.

Home Secretary Santosh Kumar told mediapersons here on Tuesday that arms and ammunition and sophisticated communication equipment recovered from different hideouts pointed towards a nexus between the radicals and the terrorist outfits from across the border.

Kumar said ammunition looted from the police armoury in Koraput last year were later seized by the Andhra Pradesh police during raids on the Naxalite hideouts. Information received from the inter-State Intelligence indicates that the ultra outfits have been exchanging arms.
The Intelligence claim has thrown up fresh challenge to the State government that has so far been unable to check the radicals’ activities.

To a question, the Home Secretary said development, employment and literacy of the tribal people living in the far-flung border areas could help solve the Naxalite problem.

Bandh response mixed: The Western Orissa bandh call given by the Congress protesting killings by Maoists in Sambalpur evoked a mixed response on Tuesday.

The bandh paralysed public transport system in Sambalpur, Sundargarh, Balangir, Kalahandi, Bargarh, Jharsuguda, Deogarh, Sonepur and Nuapada districts. However, private vehicles plied as usual. Shops and commercial establishments were closed during the morning hours but reopened later in the day.

There was no report of any untoward incident as the bandh was peaceful. As many as 300 Congress activists were rounded up during the protests.

Tamil Nadu bans CPI (Maoist)

Wednesday, July 13, 2005 (Chennai):

The Tamil Nadu government today banned Communist Party of India (Maoist) for indulging in unlawful activities, an official release said.

The party was formed in September 2004 with the merger of two banned Naxalite parties -- Communist Party of India (Marxist Leninist), popularly known as People's War, and Maoist Communist Centre of India.

"The party was banned as it was indulging in unlawful activities, maintaining links with other banned extremist groups, calling upon people to pursue the path of violence," the release said.

"It had involved itself in violence and in criminal cases and causing terror among the people," the release added.

The release also said the party, through seditious literature, wall writing, posters and pamphlets. had been inciting and encouraging its members to use criminal force and violence against government machinery. (PTI)

Buddhadeb for steps to curb naxal activity

Buddhadeb for steps to curb naxal activity

Special Correspondent

"Failure of the intelligence network in the Bankura and Purulia districts"

Two companies of the Central paramilitary forces are being rushed to the area
Trinamool Congress and the Congress walk out of the Assembly
CPI (M) observes "protest day"

KOLKATA: West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee has instructed intelligence agencies to strengthen their networks and heighten surveillance to check militancy by naxalites in the three south-western districts. This comes in the wake of the killings of three Communist Party of India (Marxist) leaders on Saturday in two districts. A police officer was also killed when a device left behind by the assailants exploded.

Mr. Bhattacharjee who reviewed the situation with senior officials here on Monday reportedly expressed dissatisfaction over the failure of the intelligence network in the Bankura and Purulia districts where the killings took place.

Two companies of the central paramilitary forces were being rushed to the area, a senior State official said. There are 29 companies of paramilitary forces including the Border Security Force and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) deployed in the three districts where naxalite ultras have a presence.

Combing operations are continuing and an additional company of the CRPF will reach the area shortly, the official added.

The extremists responsible for the killings are reported to have been members of two hit squads which could have either entered the region from neighbouring Jharkhand or from the militants' hide-outs in the forests of adjacent West Midnapore district, the official said. District authorities have sought the assistance of their counterparts in Jharkhand as the assailants might have fled there.

Opposition party members of the Trinamool Congress and the Congress walked out of the West Bengal Assembly here on Monday in separate batches protesting against the Speaker, H. A. Halim's refusal to admit adjournment motions on Saturday's killings.

They raised slogans against the ruling Left Front Government for its failure to curb militancy.

In the Assembly, Asit Mitra of the Congress condemned the killings and demanded a statement from the Chief Minister who is also in charge of the Home portfolio. The Speaker allowed the adjournment motions to be read.

Later, Trinamool MLA Saugata Roy demanded that the State Government bring out a white paper on the steps being taken to combat extremist activity and to alleviate poverty in the districts where naxalites were active.

The CPI (M) observed a "protest day" across the State against the killings.

Maoist militancy worries Bihar authorities

Wednesday, July 13, 2005 (Patna):

Authorities in Bihar are concerned over reports of LTTE imparting training to Nepalese Maoists and Naxalites in the state to raise human bomb squads.

The security establishment went into a tizzy after the June 23 attack by CPI (Maoist) Naxalites on the Madhuban police station, banks and RJD MP Sitaram Singh's house in East Champaran district.

A subsequent encounter claimed the lives of 20 Naxalites, two policemen and a bank guard.

Dozens of weapons, around 100 rounds of ammunition, a landmine device with 17 kg of explosives were recovered from different places during the mop-up operation after the Madhuban incident.

Confirming suspicions

The security men have captured more than 25 Naxalites, including Maoist rebels from Nepal and a suicide squad member of CPI (Maoist).

The arrest of Dipak Choudhury, a suspected suicide squad member of the outlawed outfit from the forest on the Indo-Nepal border and subsequent unearthing of a Maoist training camp on July 9 strengthened the suspicions.

However, the state police headquarters maintain the intelligence inputs in this regard were being verified.

"We have gone through the reports but until and unless we get tangible evidence we can't say anything about it (the LTTE militants' running training camps on the border along Bihar)," said R R Verma, IG (Operation).

"Moreover, no suicide attacks by Maoists have taken place so far," he added.

Warning signs

Verma also said some pamphlets found after the Naxalite operation in Madhuban also warned of a major strike in North India.

"The Naxalites appear to be trying to raise a large guerrilla army with the active involvement of the local youth," he said.

The pamphlets spoke of "liberating" the people from state repression.

Bihar Governor Buta Singh has already gone on record describing the Naxal problem as "quite alarming", and has sought deployment of BSF, CRPF and SSB on the porous border.

The state administration is also planning to requisition Army helicopters to be used by CRPF and STF commandos of the state police, state Home Secretary A K Biswas said. (PTI)

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

New book on Mao-USSR deal on India: Ashok Malik

The stab on the back which Nehru received from China made him weep on
the message to the nation on the radio. The invasion of Tibet and of
India by China will go down in history as the legacy of Nehruvian
stalinists. Will future governments of India have the courage to call
for and work towards achieving a Free Tibet?

The book review by Ashok Malik is lucid and should provide a framework
for a debate on the ongoing pow-wow with USA and China.

It is time for India to start a pro-active role in forming an Indian
Ocean Community and a Himalayan Parivar to counter the Chinese
geostrategies and as a counterpoise to the European Community.
Building upon the cultural contacts of over two millennia, a start can
be made with an Indian Ocean Free Trade Zone, joint patrolling of
sealanes, and activationof Trans-Asian Railroad and Trans-Asian
Highway projects.



New book says Mao-USSR deal on India

For Beijing backing on Cuba crisis, Moscow promised silence on China's
India attack


Posted online: Tuesday, July 12, 2005 at 0000 hours IST

NEW DELHI, JULY 11: In a season when Cold War secrets are tumbling
out with astonishing regularity, a new book has just revealed details
of a Beijing-Moscow deal on the eve of China's 1962 invasion of India.

Co-written by China-born author Jung Chang — best known for Wild Swan
— and her husband, British historian Jon Halliday, Mao: The Unknown
Story (Jonathan Cape) is rated the ''most authoritative'' biography of
the late Communist leader. It is an indictment of his domestic and
foreign policies, one of the victims of which, the book says, was

In the chapter ''Maoism Goes Global (1959-64)'', the authors outline
Mao's war preparations in 1962. He ended up promising to back the
Soviet deployment of nuclear missiles at America's doorstep — the
Cuban Missile Crisis, as it came to be called — if Moscow supported
his adventure in India.

''This was a hefty horse-trade,'' Jung Chang and Halliday write, ''one
well concealed from the world. On the morning of 20 October, just as
the Cuba crisis was about to break, Mao gave the go-ahead for crack
troops to storm Indian positions...Five days later, with the Cuba
crisis at fever pitch, Khrushchev came through with his support for
Mao in the form of a statement in Pravda that mortified Nehru.''

The book describes the build-up to war in ''May-June 1962'': ''Chou
(Chou Enlai) later told the Americans that 'Nehru was getting very
cocky...and we tried to keep down his cockiness'.''

It was a time of three simultaneous aggressive movements. In Taiwan,
''Chiang Kai-shek was making his most active preparations since 1949
to invade the Mainland''. Mao had to first ascertain the Americans
wouldn't help Chiang.

Then came the double deal: ''In October 1962, Khrushchev was secretly
deploying nuclear missiles in Cuba... Given the danger of a
confrontation with the USA, he wanted to ensure that Mao would not
stab him in the back. He decided to throw him a bone, a big one: the
Kremlin's blessing for China to attack India.''

Khrushchev had just signed an agreement to sell India MiG-21 fighter
aircraft. ''Mao,'' says the book, ''sent out a feeler to the Russian
ambassador about how Moscow would react if China attacked India.
Khrushchev seized this chance to make a startling demarche. On the
14th (of October) he laid out a four-hour farewell banquet for the
outgoing Chinese ambassador, at which the Soviet leader pledged that
Moscow would stand by Peking if China got into a border war with
India, and would delay the sale of MiG-21s.'' At the banquet,
Khrushchev also revealed his plans for Cuba.

As it turned out, both Mao and Khrushchev betrayed each other. ''On 28
October, after Khrushchev agreed to withdraw the missiles in return
for a promise by US president John F. Kennedy not to invade
Cuba...gigantic 'pro-Cuba' demonstrations were staged in China,
accompanied by bellicose statements... against Moscow for 'selling

The rejoinder came a week later: ''Khrushchev ... backtracked from his
previous support for China even while fighting was still going on
inside India. A Pravda editorial on 5 November conspicuously contained
not one word endorsing Peking's position. For him, as for Mao, the
collaboration had been completely opportunistic.''

Mao: The Unknown Story has been rated highly by critics for its
decade-long research and its meticulous footnotes. Jung Chang and
Halliday interviewed sources from 40 countries, including friends and
family of Mao. They also accessed Russian government archives.

Among their interviewees was V.V. Paranjpe, former diplomat — he
retired in 1982, as ambassador to South Korea — and doyen of Indian
Sinologists. Paranjpe — described in the book as an ''interpreter for
Nehru-Mao talks'' who ''met Mao in a substantial way'' — remembers
Halliday and Jung Chang visiting Delhi in the early 1990s.

''We had no idea,'' he adds, ''about the 1962 deal. This is new
material. I spoke to my former colleagues in the Foreign Service, as
well as to the foreign secretary, Shyam Saran. There is nothing in our
records about the Khrushchev-Mao negotiations.''

Monday, July 11, 2005

Dharam Singh : Life threat from the Naxalites

Daijiworld News Network - Bangalore (GA)

Bangalore, Jul 11: State chief minister Dharam Singh has been provided with additional security of 50 police personnel following a life threat from the Naxalites.

This is for the first time in the history of the state that a chief minister has been provided with such a huge force of security personnel. Superintendent of police of the security division of the state Intelligence bureau Dilip is heading the additional security force. While some police are in uniform, some others are in plainclothes.

The entire team comprises of 2 senior officers of DySP grade, city armed force, 12 personnel from special squad of the city police and state reserve police.

It is said that the chief minister has been under life threat following the death of 2 Naxalites in an encounter at Devarbalu near Kundapur on June 23. The police intelligence bureau has received information that a few Naxalites from Bidar have been hovering around Vidhana Soudha over the last few days.

Moreover, the police are worried that the Naxalites would avenge the death of two of their comrades. It is still fresh in their minds that the Naxalites had killed 7 police personnel in bomb blast at Venkatamanahalli of Tumkur within a week of police killing two Naxalites at Menasinahadya of Chikmagalur on February 6.

So far the Naxalites have been quiet with regard to the second encounter. But they could lay an ambush at any time on anyone to avenge the death of their companions. Revenge is the second name of Naxalites. They did hardly keep quiet whenever the administration and the police had troubled them.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Maoists kill sarpanch, abduct two in Andhra

Monday July 11 2005 00:00 IST


HYDERABAD: Maoist rebels in Andhra Pradesh on Sunday shot dead a village head belonging to the Congress party and abducted two employees of transport companies.

Police said eight armed guerrillas of the banned CPI-Maoist gunned down N.V. Mallaiah Naidu, the 53-year-old sarpanch or head of Madhavaram village in Kadpa district, while he was returning from nearby Maddelavandlepalli village. Naidu died instantly.

Maoists had accused Naidu of being a police informer. Naidu was elected in a recent bye-election after his predecessor from The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) resigned following death threats from the rebels.

In another incident, guerrillas belonging to CPI-ML Janashakti abducted two employees of transport companies in Khammam district.

A police spokesman said three armed Maoists went to a computer weigh-bridge near Koyagudem village in Khammam and enquired about one Suresh Lahoti, partner of South India Coal Transport Company.

Since Lahoti was unavailable, the Maoists abducted G. Rama Shankar Chary, a clerk of the company, and Naga Bujji, the employee of another transport company.

Police claimed that Maoists abducted the two employees with the intention of extorting money from the owners of the two companies.

Maoist booby trap kills officer

Maoist booby trap kills officer


Bankura/Purulia, July 10: The Maoists who gunned down two CPM leaders in a Bankura village last evening left behind a booby trap that killed an investigating officer four hours later.

Prabal Sengupta, officer in charge of Barikul police station 5 km away, drove into Majhgeria around 11 pm with 16 of his men. As he looked around the house of Raghunath Murmu, one of the victims, the middle-aged officer’s attention was caught by a black leather-and-canvas bag.

As soon as Sengupta picked it up and unzipped it, the bag blew up in his face, killing him instantly and wounding all the other 16 policemen. The second officer of the police station, Sandipan Chatterjee, was battling for life tonight with his legs riddled with shrapnel.

“It doesn’t seem like the bag was meant for the police. It was Sengupta’s bad luck that he tried to open it. The fragments of the bag will be sent for a forensic examination,” an official said.

Sengupta is the second OC killed by Maoists in Bengal in the past two years. On October 11, 2003, Bandwan OC Nilmadhab Das died in a gunbattle.

Bankura superintendent of police K. Jayaraman rushed to Majhgeria with a huge force of police and paramilitary personnel, including jawans of Eastern Frontier Rifles and the BSF. “We have issued a red alert in the district and are carrying out massive raids,” he said.

From Calcutta, director-general of police S.C. Avasthy and CID director-general (operations) Rajiv Kumar left for Bankura.

Around 7 pm yesterday, the Maoists shot dead Raghunath, 40, at his residence-cum-dispensary along with Bablu Mudi, 35, probably with AK-47 rifles. Another CPM leader, Sanjay Mudi, was injured.

Within an hour, at Dulukdihi in Purulia’s Bandwan area, 20 km from Majhgeria, some 15-16 guerrillas in army fatigues shot Mahendra Mahato with 9 mm pistols. The Naxalites included three women and spoke Bengali and Hindi.

Both sites are near the Jharkhand border, which has been sealed.

The CPM observed a 12-hour bandh in Bandwan and has called another in Bankura’s Khatra subdivision tomorrow. Party state secretary Anil Biswas said a statewide protest day will be observed across Bengal tomorrow.

CPM leaders are soft targets of the CPI (Maoist) in Bankura


Calcutta, July 10: CPM leaders are soft targets of the CPI (Maoist) in Bankura and Purulia but they are unable to provide accommodation to security personnel provided by the government, the leadership said here today.

Alarmed at last night’s killing of three CPM leaders in the two districts by Maoist activists and today’s subsequent explosion in which the officer-in-charge of Barikul police station in Bankura Prabal Sengupta was killed, senior officials decided to provide security to those who are “vulnerable.”

As many as 17 police and para-military personnel, including two officers in-charge and 12 CPM activists, have been killed by Maoist rebels in the last two years.

Though additional director-general of police (law and order) Chayan Mukherjee, said the government is ready to provide security to those being targeted by the extremists, CPM leaders from two districts expressed their inability to accept the offer.

“Most of our leaders and party members, though they are exposed to regular attacks by Maoists, are too poor to provide shelter to security people, deployed to guard them round the clock. How can they accommodate security men if they do not have adequate accommodation for themselves?” asked Amiya Patra, CPM district secretary of Bankura.

He also said it is difficult to visit remote villages in the district with a security man in tow all the time.

“Our job is to interact with poor people on a regular basis to enquire about their difficulties. So, grassroots people, particularly tribals, may take it otherwise if we always take escorts with us,” he added.

A party spokesperson from the CPM’s Purulia district committee echoed him. “Is it possible for us to move around the remote tribal area with escorts?” he asked.

A CPM insider said party leaders have already turned down the requests from the district administration on accepting security.

Faced with the problem, the district administration in the two districts has decided to reinforce all police stations.

Besides, regular meetings between officials and those stationed in police stations have been lined up to assess the law-and-order situation.

On its part, the CPM leadership has planned to intensify its campaign in support of development activities being carried out in two districts for the uplift of poor people.

“Our efforts will be to isolate the extremist forces from the poor people by way of constantly stepping up the campaign in favour of development activities,” said Anil Biswas, state CPM secretary and politburo member in a statement.

Suspicion falls on Andhra’s most wanted Strike aimed at foiling raids

Suspicion falls on Andhra’s most wanted Strike aimed at foiling raids

The dispensary in Majgheria village of Bankura, where two CPM leaders were killed on Saturday. Picture by Debjit Modak

Calcutta, July 10: The strikes by suspected CPI (Maoist) rebels in Bankura and Purulia last night were plotted by Koteshwar Rao alias Kishanji, a top-level Maoist from Andhra Pradesh, according to sources.

Rao is the chief of the organisation’s action squad, which operates in Jharkhand and Bengal.

The entire plan — said to be in retaliation to the crackdown initiated by the state government a month-and-half ago — was chalked out in Calcutta a fortnight ago at a meeting presided by Kishanji and politburo members of the organisation, the sources said.

“Both the operations were carried out by the core members — both men and women — of the organisation’s action squad. The assassins, all in black trousers and shirts, were armed with sophisticated and semi-automatic weapons. The way they fired proves the killers are well-trained in pulling triggers,” said an official of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

Chayan Mukherjee, additional director-general of police (law and order) said: “He (Kishanji) is on the list of the most wanted Maoists. Though we have no specific information about his whereabouts, efforts are on to track him down.”

Police, however, agreed that Kishanji was a few steps ahead of them. “There was no report from the officials of the Intelligence Branch (IB) who are deployed there. The IB has not even mentioned the names of the victims in their list of the Maoists’ targets,” said an official of the CID’s Special Operation Group, the wing specially formed to combat Naxalism in West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia.

At a meeting on June 3 in Calcutta, leaders of the CPI (Maoist) had adopted a resolution and threatened those who tipping off the police.

The official said the twin attack has proved it was not a false threat. “While walking away, the assassins were shouting slogans describing their targets as police spies. They also warned villagers that all police informers would meet the same fate,” he said.

Earlier, Maoist leaders had also drawn up a hit list. Senior police officials, including an IPS officer, were among the targets.

“Besides, they selected the Lalgarh police station in Bankura as one of their immediate targets. They had a plan to attack the thana and kill police officers posted there sometime in the last week of June,” said another official working on the movements of the outfit. But Bankura police came to know about the plan.

“Similarly, the Maoists also kept a close watch on our movement. We carried out a massive search operation in Lalgarh jungle where the members of the action squad were supposed to meet. But they managed to escape a few hours before we rushed there,” said the official.

“It seems, the attackers targeted CPM leaders after their first plan — attacking the Lalgarh police station — did not work,” he added.

Maoist Posters in train coaches

Posters in train coaches

KRISHNAGAR, July 10. —CPI(Maoist) posters in some coaches of the Sealdah-Krishnagar local, which reached Krishnagar station around 9.30 this morning, spread panic among commuters. The CPI(Maoist) has claimed responsibility for the murder of the CPI-M activist Basanta Dutta at Khir. — SNS

Jujumara awaits police protection

Jujumara awaits police protection

BHUBANESWAR, July 10. — The ministerial team which visited Maoist-affected Jujumara area in Sambalpur district yesterday, has reportedly recommended to the government to initiate confidence building measures immediately and increase police action to comfort the panic-stricken villagers.
Political party leaders have been making a beeline to the village following the ghastly attacks by MCC cadres. Revenue minister Mr Manmohan Samal, energy minister Mr Surya Narayan Patro and steel and mines minister Mr Padmanav Behera met the chief minister, Mr Naveen Patnaik, today and apprised him of the ground realities. They also underscored the need for prompt follow-up action, including the arrest of the militants and providing adequate security to the villagers.
On the night of 6 June, Maoists had unleashed a reign of terror in three villages under the Jujumara block and hacked five villagers, whom they suspected to be police informers, to death.
A few weeks earlier, three persons in Burda village under the same police station had been slain by the Naxalites on the night of 27 May. Frequent killings by the Maoists have obviously spread panic in the area. — SNS

Our revolutionary friends

Letters had become a nightmare for many public servants posted in remote areas in the 1980s. A letter would suddenly arrive,invariably written in red ink, or blood and would threaten to reduce the size of the recipient by six inches.

That was presumed to be the approximate height of the human head and by severing the head from the neck, the letters would add reassuringly, the objective would be achieved. These letters had a salutary effect. In one Block after another, the officers fled; offices remained under lock and key for months together. Projects came to a standstill and engineers gave finishing touches to fake bills.

That was the time when I was allowed the privilege of meeting a ‘top’ naxalite leader in a hideout on the Patna bypass road. I pointed out that the ‘letters’ sent by the outfit were having the opposite effect than what was intended. They brought no relief to the people; instead they were adding to the people’s woes. Corruption was skyrocketing, fertilisers were hard to come by, for almost everything the villagers had to pay a premium; health centres and schools had shut down and petty criminals were having a field day, masquerading as naxalites.

It is difficult to forget the look that the leader gave me. After a pregnant pause, during which he gave a disapproving glance at my escort, undoubtedly for arranging meetings with naïve reporters, he added softly, “We are not reformers, my friend. We are revolutionaries. We are not waging a war to set anything right in the system. We actually want this rotten system to fall, spread discontent and make people aware that they have no future in this system. So, we are happy that the systems are crumbling.” The leader said he was aware that the revolutionary changes he dreamt of might not come about during his own lifetime. But it did not matter, he said, because the purpose of preparing the people for the next round.

The conversation came flooding back to memory while reading a report in which Naxalites in Jharkhand have complained of police repression and a crackdown by the state. It made for pathetic reading because people who decide to wage a war against the state, should be prepared to face the might and wiles of the state too. The Naxalites cannot expect to use landmines, blow up police vehicles, mow down policemen on patrol and then expect the policemen to behave like gentlemen.

I am reminded of the explanation given by an American, who was snidely asked why the “most powerful democracy in the world does not allow the communist party the freedom to function in that country”. It was a tricky question to a citizen brought up on “freedom” and the first amendment to the American Constitution. But he took a little more than a minute to reply that the communist party was banned in the US because it sought to question and unsettle the American Constitution. “You cannot wage a war against the Constitution and yet expect protection under the provisions of the same Constitution,” he elaborated. Naxalites should expect no mercy and no protection from the state because they do not accept the state.

For more than two decades, the state has tried to tackle the issue of ‘Naxalism’ by a two-pronged strategy. At one level, it has sunk in hundreds of crores of rupees in “modernising” a police force, which refuses to have anything to do with modernity. At another level, it has glibly spoken of the “socio-economic” causes, basically poverty, driving people to the Naxalite fold. More money was sought to be pumped into rural areas, with little or no accountability. Not much percolated down to the people.

This writer’s experience is that the state has paid little or no attention to the three most corrupt and exploitative institutions in the countryside, namely the police, the law courts and the Block development offices.

This column would strongly suggest that the government should form a task-force in every district, comprising representatives from the judiciary, the Ramakrishna Mission, the Catholic Church, the RSS, a stranger to the state and post-graduate students or research scholars, to carry out a survey first.

It is rarely appreciated how a corrupt and partisan judiciary can also promote and perpetuate poverty and exploitation. The survey should open our eyes and show us the way to deal with our revolutionary friends.

Chinese-made arms seized from Maoists

Monday July 11 2005 00:00 IST

RAIPUR: Chinese-made arms have been recovered in Chhattisgarh from guerrillas of the left-wing extremist outfit Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-M), pointing to their foreign connections, a senior minister said on Sunday.

State Home Minister Ramvichar Netam said police had recovered Chinese-made arms from the Maoist ultras in a village of Balrampur area in Surguja district, 359 km from here and a Maoist stronghold.

Police engaged the rebels in a three-hour-long gun battle Friday and arrested five Naxals besides recovering a huge cache of arms, Netam told IANS on Sunday.

The arms including AK-47 rifles, detonators, pistols and live cartridges bore Chinese-made marks, which confirmed that Naxals active in Chhattisgarh had foreign connections, said the minister.

"This is not the first time police has recovered foreign made arms from guerrillas. Earlier this year Pakistani-made arms were recovered. We are probing what kind of connections the Naxals have established with neighbouring hostile nations," said Netam.

He claimed the Maoist rebels, active in nine of the state's total 16 districts, were losing base in Bastar region bordering Andhra Pradesh and in the Surguja belt adjoining Jharkhand.

"Since the country's first ever anti-Naxal people's movement broke out in Chhattisgarh last month in Dantewada, the rebels have stepped up attacks on police which is a sign of growing frustration among guerrillas, Netam said.

Earlier this month, villagers in Dantewada and Sarguja districts rose in "revolt" against the Maoists and the state government had assured them full backing.

Police officer probing CPI(M) leaders' killing dies in blast


Closely following the gunning down of three CPI(M) activists by suspected Maoist guerrillas in West Bengal's Bankura and Purulia districts last night, a senior police officer probing the incidents was killed and 16 policemen were injured when an abandoned packet he was examining exploded.

Prabal Sengupta, officer-in-Charge of Barikul police station, in Bankura district, perished in the blast and 16 police personnel standing close to him received splinter injuries in the explosion, ADG (Law and Order) Chayan Mukherjee said.

Sengupta had gone to Majdia in Bankura district to investigate the killing of CPI-M's Ranibandh zonal committee member Raghunath Murmu, another local committee member, Bablu Mudi, by suspected Maoists last night. The attackers fled after seriously injuring another party worker.

The suspected Maoists also struck in Purulia district's Dulugudi village last night shooting dead a CPI-M local leader Mahendra Mahato.

Mukherjee said none of the attackers had yet been identifed. While combing operations have begun, no arrest has been made. The borders with the neighbouring states have been sealed.

Maoist attacks in Bankura, Purulia and West Midnapore districts during 2003-4 have claimed lives of 17 policemen.

Apart from 16 police personnel, three local people also received splinter injuries at Barikul where the OC was killed, Mukherjee said. Massive raids were on in both Bankura and Purulia districts to track down the attackers, he said.

At Bandwan in Purulia, where a 12-hour bandh was observed by the CPI-M, two persons were detained for interrogation, he said.

The CPI-M has also called a 12-hour bandh at Barikul in Bankura district tomorrow in protest against the attack.

Some areas in Barikul today wore a deserted look after the explosion late last night.

The ADG (Law and Order) said an investigation was on to confirm if the attacks were in retaliation of the massive combing operation against and recent arrest of some Maoists in the belt.

He said Maoist leaders from other states often visit these places where a Maoist politburo member was arrested recently.

Three Bengal CPI-M leaders killed by Maoists

Kolkata: Three Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leaders were shot dead in twin strikes by Maoist rebels in two south Bengal districts, police said.

The attacks took place Saturday in the adjoining districts of Purulia and Bankura.

A policeman was killed and 16 other policemen injured when a bomb exploded in Bankura after the Maoist attack.

Police said the two CPI-M district leaders - identified as Raghunath Murmu and Bablu Mudi - from Majgeria under Barikul police station in Bankura were returning home around 8 p.m. when they were gunned down by the attackers.

When police reached the spot, a bomb left behind by the Maoists exploded, killing Probal Sengupta, the officer-in-charge of Barikul police station.

About the same time, CPI-M leader Mahendra Mahato was shot dead in the adjoining Purulia district at his residence by Maoists.

The incident occurred under the Bandowan police station, where the CPI-M is observing a shutdown Sunday to protest the killings.

Police have launched a massive combing operation in the two districts.

CPI-M state secretary Anil Biswas said the killings were carried out because of "Maoists' frustration at being slowly alienated from the people at large".

"We have lost eleven partymen to Maoists in the past two years. The CPI-M would hold street demonstrations against the attacks Monday," Biswas said.

At least 17 policemen have died in Maoist attacks in these areas in the past two years.


CPI(M) to observe 'Protest Day' in West Bengal tomorrow

Kolkata, July. 10 (PTI): The CPI(M) would observe 'Protest Day' in West Bengal tomorrow against the killing of three of its leaders by suspected Maoists in Purulia and Bankura districts last night.

"We will protest in a democratic way tomorrow across the State against the heinous killings," CPI(M) State Secretary Anil Biswas, said here today.

He said increasing incidents of attacks against CPI(M) workers and leaders indicated the growing isolation of the naxalite outfits from the people.

With every such incident, more people were reposing their faith on the CPI(M), thus isolating the naxalite outfits, he said.

Biswas said he is not planning to visit Bankura or Purulia to take stock of the situation. "Our local leaders are there. I don't think it is necessary for anyone from the State level to visit.”

Eleven CPI(M) leaders and workers, besides eight police personnel, were killed in Bankura and Purulia in the last two years by Peoples' War and MCC activists, he claimed.

"Because our party believes in democracy, its leaders and workers are being targeted by the PW and MCC. It shows the frustration of those outfits at the developmental work taken up by the Government in those poverty-stricken areas," he said.

Maoist suicide squad member captured, camp busted


A Maoist suicide squad member wanted in connection with several recent attacks was arrested here today following which a militant training camp deep inside forest was raided and a huge cache of firearms, explosives and detonators were seized, police said.

Following a tip-off, a police team captured Dipak Choudhury, a member of the suicide squad of proscribed CPI (Maoist) from Radhia forest on the Indo-Nepal border here in West Champaran district, Police Superintendent S Majid said.

Later, on the information given by Choudhury, the police raided the training camp and destroyed two bunkers, but the naxalites there managed to escape, the police officer said.

Several landmines, detonators, naxal literature, computers, army uniforms, television sets and compact disks were seized from the camp, he said.

Choudhury was wanted in connection with recent naxalite attacks on a police station and RJD MP Sitaram Singh's house at Madhuban in adjoining East Champaran district last month.

Twenty naxalites, two policemen and a bank security guard were killed in the Madhuban attack and the police encounter that followed.

Jharkhand cops to be trained at Arakkonam

Sunday July 10 2005 12:31 IST

CHENNAI: The second batch of recruits of Jharkhand Police will be trained at the Recruits Training Centre (RTC) of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) this year at Arakkonam.

The request was made by the Jharkhand Government after the first batch of 372 recruits were successfully trained for six months at the RTC.

Addressing a Press conference after the passing out parade of the first batch of Jharkhand Police Constables on Saturday, C B Satpathy, Additional Director General, CISF, said: ‘‘The State Government is yet to specify the number of cadets to be trained. Training for the first batch was carried out according to the requirements of the State Government.’’

The recruits were trained based on the requirements laid down by the State Government, he added.

The recruits, who joined the RTC in January 2005, were trained on weapons handling, counter-insurgency methods, VIP security, field craft and tactics. Special emphasis was given to tackling insurgency and Naxal attacks.

Theory included crime investigation, human rights, role of police in disaster management, anti-terrorist tactics, police behaviour, weapons against women, elders, children and weaker sections.

Earlier, addressing the recruits, Satpathy said training institutions should inculcate the highest order of knowledge and skills in the trainees as the government and the people expect the police to be sensitive to human rights as well as judicial requirements of special groups like Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, elders, women and children.

He also said that trainees should be equipped to meet these challenges and the changed expectations of the people and the government from the police.

‘‘The country is facing challenges of terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir and the North East region. Left wing extremism in entire plateau region of North India poses an added challenge. In these circumstances, the role of the police have increased.’’

D P Parihar, Principal, RTC, K Kamaraja, DIG, CISF, South Zone, and Behel, Commander INS Rajali, were also present.

Two naxals shot dead in West Godavari district

Two militants shot dead in encounter

Staff Reporter

ELURU: Two militants of the Rajanna group of the CPI-ML (Janasakti) were shot dead while two others sustained critical injuries in an encounter with the police at Sarikuntapalli, a remote village in the agency of West Godavari district, on Saturday morning. However, the dalam leader, Kranti, reportedly managed to escape with bullet injuries.

According to the Deputy Inspector-General (DIG) of Police, Eluru range, K. Narasimha Reddy, a special party police had reached the place on a tip-off as part of combing operations. Upon spotting the police, a sentry guarding the naxal hideout in a cashew grove in Polavaram mandal, began opening fire and fled the scene. The police returned the fire leading to the death of the militants, the DIG said. The two persons remained trapped in the hideout even as the remaining six persons managed to escape under the cover of gunfire. None from the police party was injured. The eight-member Kranti dalam was said to have been taking shelter in the cashew garden at the time of the encounter.

The police are yet to officially confirm the identity of the militants killed in the encounter. The bodies were being shifted to Kovvuru Government Hospital for a post-mortem examination. They were in the age-group of 20-25. One of the victims was said to have infiltrated from Warangal. The police recovered eight weapons-- two rifles, one China-made pistol, two SBBL guns, three tapanchas, more than 70 live cartridges--and five kits containing revolutionary literature from the scene of encounter.

Terror Inc.

Terror Inc.

[ SATURDAY, JULY 09, 2005 08:21:13 PM ]

The clutch of jehadi groups is best represented by the Lashkar-e-Toiba which can claim to have a presence across the country. LeT is the largest and biggest threat to the Capital. It has sleeper modules in most cities and can claim a presence in the North-East too.
LeT and Jaish-e-Mohammed are very active in Kashmir which they see as a ‘holy' battleground. They are based in Pakistan where cadres are indoctrinated and trained. Others of their ilk include Al-Badr.
Left-wing groups too have established links with some jehadi terror modules. These groups drive Naxal violence in Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Jharkhand, Chattisgarh and Bihar. The People's War Group is a fairly sophisticated organisation which came within a hair's breath of killing N Chandrababu Naidu when he was CM. It has access to explosives such as RDX and uses electronic communication to full advantage.
Then there's the Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) which recently made headlines after two cinema hall blasts on May 22. The group is also thought to be responsible for the mid-air explosion of Air India's Kanishka, off the Irish coast in 1985.
There are also small groups fighting regional battles like the one for Bodoland. All these groups have a capacity to strike at public places. "In a public place, it's next to impossible to ensure total security from terrorists," says K P S Gill, president, Institute for Conflict Management and former Punjab police chief. He names the LeT, BKI and Pakistan-based Khalis

Govt to tackle terrorism with firm hand: Patil

PTI New Delhi July 9: The government is of the firm opinion that a solution could be found to problems through dialogue but it would tackle terrorism with a firm hand, the Union Home Minister, Mr Shivraj Patil said today.

“Only if all ways are closed, force will be used as the last resort. But the solution lies in talks and discussions which would seek to remove misunderstandings,” he said while participating in a seminar on ‘Violence and terrorism: causes and solutions’ here.

He cited from the epic ‘Mahabharata’ in which the Pandavas had to resort to violence in order to vanquish the Kauravas.

He said the scourge of terrorism was not limited to India alone but was a malaise that had spread worldwide.

“Both peace and terrorism are in the mind of man. The problem arises when some seek to uphold their religion while others want to prove that their culture is the best. This attitude needs to go,” the minister said.

“But ninety per cent of the world’s people believe in peace and non-violence so I am convinced that a solution can be found. All countries need to come together and take steps — through talks,” he said.

Claiming that there was a decline in terrorist activities in the country, Mr Patil said, “there has been 70-80 per cent reduction in terrorist activities in Jammu and Kashmir, 40 per cent reduction in North-East and up to four per cent decrease in Naxal violence,” he said

Four naxals shot dead in AP

Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad | July 09, 2005 17:47 IST

Four naxals belonging to two different outfits were killed in Andhra Pradesh's West Godavari and Warangal districts on Saturday.

Two naxals belonging to the Communist Party of India-Marxist Leninist Janashakti were killed in an exchange of fire with the police at a place near a village in Polavaram mandal in West Godavari district, a police spokesman said.

Six others had fled from the spot, the spokesman said. He added that seven weapons and kitbags were recovered from the site.

In another encounter at the Bhupalpally area in Warangal district, two members of the Praja Pratighatana, another naxal outfit, were killed by the police. The encounter took place after police stormed their hide-out in the early hours of Saturday. The extremists were identified as Suresh and Hanumanthu.

Three weapons--two carbines and a countrymade 9-mm pistol-- were recovered from the encounter spot.