Saturday, September 17, 2005

Anti-Naxalite raids intensify in Jharkhand

Statesman News Service

Ranchi, Sept. 17. — Jharkhand Police, along with their counterparts in Orissa, have launched one of the biggest offensives against Naxalites in and around Saranda forests in Chaibasha. The move comes after the bloodbath in Belwaghati in Giridih where fifteen people were gunned down by the Maoists.
According to information from the state police, a detailed plan has been formulated by the police top-brass about the operation, which has begun since early this morning. The entire operation is being led by IG (Ranchi Range) Mr DK Pandey. The DIG of Kolhan, Mr Ramchandra Ram, has also left for the destination along with a large contingent.
The movement of forces started since last evening. Around 10 companies of CRPF have been assembled from across the state in Jamshedpur. Three more companies of the state’s Special Task Force and Sengel (indigenous force developed by the state police to combat Naxalites) were asked to report at Jamshedpur.
Sources said that after a late night meeting of top police officers, it was also decided to form a team of doctors who would be taken to nearby locations to treat injured jawans and policemen.
Police officers said Saranda forest will be surrounded from three strategic corners and the entire force would be split into three groups.
The first attack would be led by Mr Navin Kumar, SP Chaibasha, from Barajumda. ASP Chaibasha Mr Saket Kumar Singh has been asked to lead the second group from Bundgaon. Finally, the Kolhan DIG will lead the offensive from Monoharpur.
A separate police team will co-ordinated by Orissa Police from inside Sundergarh district in that state, sources said, to back-up the offensive of Jharkhand Police against the Naxalites.
Sources said the raids had already begun inside Saranda forest, but there was no information about any arrest.

Uttaranchal dispenses security

From Shishir Prashant DH News Service Dehra Dun:

For small-time politicians, here is good news. If you want to flaunt security cover as a status symbol, all you have to do is request the same from the liberal Uttaranchal government. It doesn’t matter even if you don’t happen to be a resident of Uttaranchal. And, all these in the name of VIP security.

Notwithstanding the fact that Uttaranchal itself is in the grip of a Maoist scare, the State government is now providing gunners to politicians of nearby states, mostly Uttar Pradesh, free of cost.

Nearly 150 gunners from the state have been posted on security duties in Meerut, Muzaffarnagar, Noida, top police officials said. In most cases, Uttaranchal Chief Minister N D Tiwari has sanctioned the security cover.

Not that these gunners have nothing to do in Uttaranchal. All those bestowed with ministerial-level posts are entitled to have one or two gunners each. According to an estimate, there are nearly 150 ubiquitous politicians who zoom past the roads of the state in their brand new beacon-fitted cars.

There are 461 constables on the rolls of Dehra Dun police. Of these, 142, are posted on gunner duty, officials said. They are not forthcoming on the exact number of the gunners posted outside the state. They admit their numbers are growing. “VIP security is growing at an alarming proportion. Everyday, we receive five applications for gunners,” a police official said.

Irked over the burgeoning ranks of those aspiring for security cover, police has now served notices to at least 25 politicians who flaunt the security cover as a matter of ostentation, for the withdrawal of security.

“We have found that there is hardly any security risk,” said DIG R S Meena. The Uttaranchal police is preparing a separate gunner cadre keeping in view the demand for VIP security. About 180 constables will make up the cadre.

Patil promises Andhra help in tackling Maoists

Hyderabad | September 17, 2005 8:25:06 PM IST

Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil Saturday assured central assistance to Andhra Pradesh in tackling Maoists.

He gave this assurance when Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy and Home Minister K. Jana Reddy met him to seek assistance for modernisation of the police force.

Patil, who was here to attend a passing out parade at the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) training institute, said some important issues were discussed during the meeting.

"The chief minister and home minister put forward some demands," he said. He, however, refused to elaborate, saying further discussions on the issues would be held during a meeting of chief ministers to be held in New Delhi Monday.

Jana Reddy told newsmen that they sought the centre's assistance for modernisation of police force. "Modernisation of the police force covers all issues," he said when asked whether it was meant to tackle Maoists.

Official sources said Patil assured all assistance from the centre, including deployment of central forces to tackle guerrillas.

The Communist Party of India-Maoist has stepped up its violent activities after the state government last month re-imposed a ban on it. The violence, which resumed in January following the collapse of a fragile peace process, has so far claimed nearly 300 lives.


Home Minister Patil calls for fresh plan against Naxalites

Hyderabad | September 17, 2005 6:26:16 PM IST

Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil today said that the Centre would chalk out a fresh action plan with states to counter the Naxalite problem.

"We have called for a meeting on September 19 to work for better co-ordination among the states and the Centre in dealing with the problem," Patil told reporters after reviewing the passing out parade of sub-inspectors of Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) here.

The minister said that the strategies to solve the problem that has spread into most states of the country would be discussed with the Chief Ministers of Naxalite affected states.

In the wake of the recent killings by the Naxalites in Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, there is a demand for "uniform policy" as well as a "united and coordinated operation" from all the affected states, he said.

After a Naxalite attack in Chattisgarh killed 24 CRPF personnel on September 3, the State government banned the Naxalite groups, including the Communist Party of India (Maoist).

The Chhattisgarh ban came less than three weeks after the CPI-Maoist was proscribed in Andhra Pradesh following a series of Naxalite-police clashes, including the killing of a Congress legislator in Mahbubnagar on Independence Day.

Naxalism, the movement named after an armed uprising of 1967 in Naxalbari village in West Bengal's Darjeeling district, is different from other militant movements, which typically remain confined to single states and to limited issues. Over 38 years, Naxalism has steadily grown both in its core areas and in contiguous states.

Today, as many as 76 districts in nine states, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Bihar, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra and West Bengal are affected by the menace. (ANI)

Wanted naxalite held

Dharmapuri (TN), September 17: A naxalite activist, wanted in connection with a 2002 murder, has been arrested at Gurubarapalli, 20 km from Krishnagiri in the district, police said.

R Venkatagiriyappa, a member of the Maoist Communist Committee and an accused in the murder of then Union Chairman of Tali block, was arrested by a special police team yesterday.

He was produced before a Krishnagiri court which remanded him to judicial custody, they said.

New action plan to tackle naxalism

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Hyderabad, Sept 17: The Centre will work on a fresh action plan to flush out naxalism in consultation with states, Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil said today.

Speaking to reporters after reviewing the passing out parade of sub-inspectors of Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) here , Patil said the strategies to solve the problem of naxalism would be discussed with the Chief Ministers of naxal-affected states.

"We have called a meeting on September 19 to work for better co-ordination among the states and the Centre in dealing with the problem,", he added.

Earlier, addressing the passing out parade, Patil said the CISF would have to shoulder additional responsibility, as the number of airports would go up soon.

PVK Reddy, director, National Industrial Security Academy (NISA) said special courses were being conducted for security personnel to handle disasters like tsunami.

The 28th batch of sub-inspectors, executives consisting 15 trainees passed out from NISA. (Agencies)

Naxal leader alleges torture in jail

Saturday September 17 2005 13:48 IST

RAICHUR: Naxal leader Ramesh who is in Gulbarga jail as an under trial prisoner since last four and half years has complained to the district principal and sessions judge here in a letter that the jail superintendent was mentally torturing him. He is facing five cases in Raichur court.

In the letter, a copy, which was made available to the press, he said that the jail superintendent had kept him in a separate barrack on the pretext of security.

The previous superintendent had allowed him to have a radio to hear music and news but this superintendent had confiscated the radio saying that ’it would help you to prepare bomb’.

He was not even allowed to visit the library to read newspapers, he complained.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Maoist ceasefire a strategic ploy: RNA

KOL Report

KATHMANDU, Sept 16 - Royal Nepal Army Spokesman Brigadier General Deepak Gurung Friday said that Maoist three-month unilateral truce was a strategy to reorganize and restructure their militants to strengthen their power in the future.
Speaking during a press meet at the RNA headquarters in the capital today, Gurung said, "The ceasefire is a ploy. There has been a sharp rise in the abduction of civilians to recruit them as Maoist militant and their training activities have escalated in due course of time."

Gurung claimed that the Maoist move was aimed at preserving their energy and regrouping their militant activities, adding, "They might get strong after three months so we must be prepared for it."

Gurung refuted the claim that army's security operations have intensified after Sept.3—the day Maoists announced a three month unilateral truce with immediate effect.

"Such allegation is baseless," he said. "Mobilizing our troops is a part of our regular operations and will be continued in the future too."

He also rejected the claim that the RNA security personnel were involved in systematic torture of those held in detention.

"The RNA strongly objects such accusation," said Gurung. "We have been taking action against those found guilty after investigations and if there is a proof no one will be spared."

Presenting findings of a weeklong visit to Nepal, Manfred Nowak, special rapporteur of the U.N. Commission on Torture, in a separate program today, said that security personnel systematically practiced torture and ill-treatment of detainees in order to extract confessions and to obtain intelligence.

RNA forms 2 battalions

The RNA today informed that it has decided to establish two battalions in the Terai and the hilly regions to incorporate indigenous groups to uplift their social standards and enhance their ethnic pride.

The battalion formed in the Terai region will focus on Madhesi community while the one in the Hilly region will give priority to various nationalities (Janajatis) of Kirant region.

Maoist sympathiser hacked to death

Friday September 16 2005 11:42 IST

KARIMNAGAR: Within 24 hours of CPI (Maoist) Naxalites gunning down S Ravinder Rao, a former Naxalite at Ambatipalli of Mahadevpur mandal branding him as a Police informer, unidentified miscreants hacked to death B Thrilinga Rao, a Maoist sympathiser of the same village in the small hours of on Thursday.

Relatives of Thrilinga Rao suspecting the involvement of the police behind the killing staged a dharna opposite Mahadevpur Police station.

According to the information reaching here, four unidentified persons went to the house of Thrilinga Rao, took him to the village outskirts and hacked him to death. The two killings within a span of 18 hours led to tension in the village.

An RTC bus was also set ablaze by angry villagers.

Kataram inspector of police Srinivasa Rao denied the involvement of the police in the killing of Thrilinga Rao. “Efforts are on to identify the miscreants,” he said.

ENS adds from Hyderabad: The Director General of Police, in a press release, suspected the involvement of relatives or friends of slain Ravinder Rao in the killing of Thrilinga Rao.

Rebel alarm sounded in Jharkand

Jamshedpur, Sept. 15: The state home ministry today put the leading cities in the state on a high alert against a probable attack by active Naxalite outfits in the state.

The home department has also alerted the government and referral hospitals in the state.

The ministry is basing their suspicions on the intelligence reports they received.

While the report filtered into the state headquarters, home minister Sudesh Mahto held an emergency meeting with senior police officers in Ranchi.

The meeting was attended, among others, the director general of police, B.D. Ram, inspector generals of police and deputy inspector general of police.

While talking to The Telegraph Mahto said: “The state authorities are apprehensive of a probable attack from some Naxalite outfit and other subversive outfits. We are trying to beef up the security across the state.”

The home minister pointed out that all the district administrations have been alerted so that they may cope with any emergencies in the wake of any attacks. Mahto maintained that a strict and vigilant stance is imperative and the government would keep itself ready for meeting any emergency.

Mahto further informed that a similar meeting of senior administrative and police officers would be held on September 18 at Ranchi.

Meanwhile, the district civil surgeon, Shiv Shanker Birua held a meeting with the MGM Medical College Hospital superintendent, A. K. Verma today in the evening.

Although the civil surgeon tried to underplay the meeting, calling it a “routine affair”, but sources in the medical college hospital revealed that the hospital superintendent rushed to the civil surgeon’s office for the meeting. He had apparently received a a fax message from the home department.

Hospital sources added: “The fax message made it clear that emergency wards must be prepared to face any dire situation. In fact there was a chance of biological or chemical attack.”

No one is above the law, but...

M.V. KAMATH | Friday, September 16, 2005 12:18:11 IST
The law and the police must give the reporter some elbow room to do his job

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For the last one hundred years and more the question has been frequently asked: what is the role of the media? And with the same frequency, the reply has been given: it is to ferret out the truth and to report it, accurately and as objectively as possible, without fear or favour. Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy is probably out of touch with the world or he is all three, deaf, dumb and blind. Addressing a workshop in Hyderabad in early August on the Right to Information Act he made an astounding threat. He said: "Journalists are not above the law. Interviewing criminals, Naxalites or others wanted by law is a culpable offence and the police can book cases against them". Hinting that journalists could be hauled up for "abetting major crimes" by airing the views of wanted criminals, Mr. Reddy decried the "misinformation" campaign being carried out against his government by a section of the media. He even called a media conference to lash out at two newspapers. He was sore that the electronic media, too, was guilty of abetting violence because it had interviewed a self-proclaimed killer, Meddu Srini, who has been instigating terrorist acts.

Offensive reporting
Deccan Chronicle (August 18) understandably took objection to Mr. Reddy's statements. It pointed out that he is not the first Andhra Pradesh chief minister to "deliver homilies on what the media must do", considering that an earlier chief minister, N. Janardhana Reddy had, in May 1992 sought to bring in a "black bill" to impinge on the freedom of the press, threatening to arrest journalists under the AP Public Security Act under which naxal outfits are banned.The Asian Age (August 21) quoted criminal lawyer D. Raj Reddy as saying what the chief minister had said was "unconstitutional". He asked: "How can interviewing a criminal or an outlawed activist become an offence?" And another High Court advocate, S. Ramchandra Rao was quoted as saying that the government has no right to abrogate right to information and freedom of expression. Now it is a fact that naxalism has been spreading in many parts of the country, from Nepal to Karnataka. The question may well be asked:

"How come?" Would any happy, well-settled people, living normal lives, ever take to violence? Haven't the people at large the right to know what is going on and why people have become killers?
The Hitavada (April 3) carried a long interview with Varavara Rao, a spokesman of the naxal movement who acted as an emissary during the recent talks between the naxalites and the Andhra Pradesh government. In carrying the interview The Hitavada did a distinct service to the country at large. Varavara Rao's opinions may not be palatable to any government but the citizens of India have the right to know them.
For making them known, is The Hitavada to be prosecuted? What kind of country are we living in?
Of course, journalists are not above the law. Nor, may one by permitted to say, are chief ministers or politicians of any hue. Naxalites are not ordinary "criminals". Whether one likes or believe it or not, they represent the unrest prevailing in certain sections of the people of India. Any decent government must address itself to finding out the nature of the 'unrest' and ways to deal with it. It is not the job of the ordinary police officer - though, possibly, it should be - to inquite into the roots of social unrest. His job is primarily to maintain law and order. A reporter is not a police officer.
His job is to look at "causes and effects"; in the pursuit of his professional task he may find it necessary to seek the hiding places of naxalites in order to interview them. Is he legally bound to reveal these places to the police? If the reporter betrays his interviewee, what will be his chances to interview him again?
The law - and the police - must give the reporter some elbow room to do his job. That is what sound government is all about. As Deccan Chronicle put it: "(The AP Chief Minister's) assertion that law-enforcement agencies have a right to information on the interviews with absconding criminals or naxals betrays his contempt for the freedom of the press". Perhaps a distinction has to be made here. A naxalite may be a criminal, but a criminal is not necessarily a naxalite. Prime minister Dr. Manmohan Singh has been quoted as saying that naxalites, instead of taking to murder and mayhem should stand for elections and speak out in behalf of their constituents in the Legislative Assemblies of their respective states. That makes sense. But since the naxalites are not listening to his sane advice, somebody must find out what naxalites think and want. That is the job of the journalist. To say that journalists are not above the law is just silly. In the first place no journalist has made that claim and nobody ever would. Interviewing a naxalite in his hide-out cannot be crime but the Director General of Police of Andhra Pradesh wants journalists to be police-informers or else "face the music". If a journalist can locate a naxlite's hideout, but the police cannot, what shows is the inefficiency of the police. It would seem that the DGP's minions have been harassing local media stringers in Mahbubnagar and other naxalite-affected districts of Andhra Pradesh by asking them to disclose the whereabouts of underground naxalits leaders, as "good citizens".

Internal Emergency
One can assure the DGP that journalists are as "good citizens" as anyone else, only his minions are inefficient. This needs to be pointed out. Indian journalists, in this sense, have a very difficult task that journalists elsewhere in the world, do not have to face. Perhaps the DGP needs to be warned. As Deccan Chronicle rightly put it (August 22): "Attempts to muzzle the press or intimidate the journalists would backfire. During the Internal Emergency in 1975-77, Indira Gandhi imposed press censorship and incarcerated scores of journalists under the notorious Prevention of Publication of Objectionable Material Act.

But her party was routed in the next elections. Will Dr. Rajasekhar Reddy and company learn any lesson?".
According to criminal lawyer D. Raj Reddy of Hyderabad, quoted by The Asian Age, no one can force a journalist to reveal the whereabouts of a banned activist. But the matter needs to be clarified. The law may be an ass but even asses know where to go if the road is clear. They don't have to be whipped. The trouble with our politicians and the police seems to be that they don't know where to draw the line, in the larger interests of the nation. And it is time the media took over the task of educating them

Mysore: Naxalites Trying to Target Chamundeshwari Temple?

Daijiworld News Network - Mysore (GA) - with inputs from Bangalore

Mysore, Sep 16: Some high-level, informed sources have revealed that the Naxalites are planning to attack the world-famous Chamundeshwari Temple on the Chamundi Hill near here.

The reports have confirmed that thick clouds of Naxalite movement are hovering on the Heritage City of Mysore. The reports have also confirmed that a group of Naxal women has infiltrated into the city and is forming their base here. The report has been confirmed by the Intelligence sleuths too who said that they have got tip off about this and they are taking precautionary steps in this regard.

Women on top

It is said that the women Naxalites who have managed to enter Mysore are trying to establish their secret base in the city. Subsequently they are planning to attack prominent historical and tourist spots in connivance with their male colleagues. It is suspected that the Naxalites intend to create panic among the public by attacking these prime sports during the annual Dasara celebrations.

The intelligence sleuths have taken a number of preventive measures in this regard. Policemen and women are keeping a special guard over all the prime tourist spots. Huge numbers of police personnel have been patrolling around in plainclothes. Women police constables have been deployed over the past one week at the Chamundi Hill, Jaganmohan Palace and Mysore Palace to keep vigil on suspicious-looking characters.

Security measures

The intelligence department has requested the government to install closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras to keep an eye on those who appear to be going around in a suspicious manner. Meanwhile the police strength at the Chamundi Hill outpost has been increased with the deputation of an additional assistant sub-inspector. The city police have deputed a well-equipped KSRP platoon, stationed at the Chamundi Hill in a van in the night.

Earlier the Naxals had intended to attack Chamundeshwari Temple during the Chamundeshwari Vardhanthi festival held atop the Hill in the last month. But their plans come to naught and they are now focusing their attention towards Dasara when people will be gathering in lacs as all the roads in the city will lead to the Chamundeshwari Temple during annual Dasara festival.

Vital points on alert list

The intelligence department has suggested that the Krishnaraja Sagar dam in the neighbouring Mandya district must also be provided tight police security as it is believed to be one of the major targets. It is also said that the Somanathpur Temple at T Narsipur too is in the hitlist of the Naxalites. It is said that the Naxals have at least 14 temples of Karnataka on their hit-list.

The police department sources who confided that the intelligence department in city had been on red alert following reports about the entry of women Naxals, regretted that they were not getting proper and timely support from the government, nor were they well-equipped to tackle the Naxalites effectively.

Naxal sympathiser gunned down

Friday September 16 2005 11:59 IST

KARIMNAGAR: Within 24 hours after CPI (Maoist) Naxalites killed S Ravinder Rao, a former Naxalite at Ambatipalli, unidentified miscreants hacked to death B Trilinga Rao, a Maoist sympathiser of the same village on Thursday.

Relatives of Trilinga Rao, suspecting the involvement of the police behind the killing, staged a dharna at Mahadevpur police station.

The assailants reportedly went to Rao’s house, took him to the village outskirts and hacked him to death.

Orissa lack of clear-cut plan impedes action

Naxal issue: State Govt’s lack of clear-cut plan impedes action

Friday September 16 2005 11:22 IST

BHUBANESWAR: Even as the Naxals massacred 20 village defence committee members in Jharkhand on Monday, Orissa Government’s ‘no ban’ on the armed group has raised many an eyebrow.
Neighbouring Andhra Pradesh (AP) and Chhattisgarh have made their stands clear on combating Left Wing ultras by imposing ban on the CPI (Maoist). Jharkhand had long back banned MCC.

But nestled in the heart of this Naxal-infested region, Orissa is in an unenviable position now. The State Government, however, has made it clear that it’s not contemplating a ban on the Naxals.

Home Secretary Santosh Kumar, who recently went on a two day visit to Naxal-hit southern districts, has gone on record saying that the State Government is open to talks with Naxals but without any pre-conditions.

The State, however, has no soft corner for the Ultras, he has maintained. However, the issue of ‘a ban or no-ban’ has created a divided house. Sources in the State Police feel that it’s about time Orissa imposed a ban on Ultras.

“With its neighbours going on the offensive against the Ultras, the State could be in for trouble in days to come,” they said. The argument is not entirely unsubstantiated.

Once AP and Chhattisgarh start a flushing out exercise and chase the radicals, it could be tough for Orissa, sources add. With the recent ambush attacks by Naxals in AP, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand, the police offensive is only a matter of time.

However, DGP Suchit Das maintains that Orissa Police is on an alert. “We do not see any significant change in the situation immediately but security forces are prepared. We are also in constant touch with our counterparts in the neighbouring states.”

But, with radicals spreading their base to more than 12 districts, officials feel only a ban can contain the growth of their tentacles.

“A ban would empower the security forces to check the supporters base, which is key to contain them,” said a senior official. As such, the State’s Naxal-combating history has not exactly been illustrious to say the least.

The spate of incidents in Sambalpur exposed its weak strategies. While the peace initiatives did not work, the tribal-appeasing move seems to have failed.

In fact, the frontal organisations of the CPI (Maoist) and sympathisers have already rejected the ‘tribal-friendly’ policies initiated by the Government.

What has come in for criticism is the lack of a clear-cut plan on the part of the State. In fact, the Joint coordination committee of the Naxal-hit states, formed by the Centre, has brought little or no help to the State.

“It was decided in the last joint coordination committee meeting that these Naxal-hit states will adopt a strategy that benefits them all.

Now with AP as well as Chhattisgarh imposing a ban has left Orissa cornered.

“Is there any joint strategy at all?” wonders a senior official. In fact, the next meeting of the Naxal-hit states is slated to be held later this month, which will be attended by the Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

Will the State Government take a decision before its too late, is a big question.

Naxal woman alleges sexual torture in dalam

Author: Vivek Deshpande
Publication: IE
Date: September 14, 2005

A surrendered woman Naxalite from Gadchiroli, Pushpakala, has alleged
she ran away from her dalam as she was subjected to sexual harassment by
dalam's deputy commander.

A case has been registered against Tipagarh Dalam's deputy commander
Lacchanna on the basis of her complaint.

"This is the first instance of an offence being registered in the case
alleged sexual harassment by a woman Naxalite." Joint Commissioner,
Ant-Naxalite Operations, Pankaj Gupta said.

The Police and several activists in the region have been claiming sexual
harassment of female Naxalites by male Dalam members is a common

"Pushpakala told us that when she brought Lacchanna's act to the notice
Shubhenakka, the Korchi Dalam Commander, she was advised to put up with
and use contraceptives," Gadchiroli Superintendent of Police Shirish

Pushpakala also alleged Shubhenakka told her that she too used
contraceptives, Jain added.

"The police should know that those who speak of social justice indulge
such activities in their own backyards," Gupta said.

The police have sent Pushpakala's name for benefits under the
recently-noticed Naxalite surrendered policy. She is one of the 213
sent for the government's approval.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Naxals tightening noose: IB



NEW DELHI: The Intelligence Bureau has presented a grim picture of Bihar in its report to the home affairs ministry, marking 32 districts as quite sensitive in view of Naxalite presence.

The report also stressed the need for deployment of extra forces along the Indo-Nepal border amid information that Maoist groups are tying up with their Nepali counterparts under a newly set-up umbrella organisation called the "Indo-Nepal Border Regional Committee".

The report, submitted to the ministry last week, has also apprehended that candidates contesting the coming Assembly elections may try and use Naxals to their advantage in constituencies where keen contests are expected.

The MHA, in turn, shared the report with para-military forces and immediately rushed 150 companies to Bihar. "All the companies would be in place at the disposal of Bihar government by Thursday. This includes 75 companies of BSF, 65 of CRPF and 10 of ITBP. The forces would be used on "area domination duty" prior to the elections," said a senior home ministry official.

Terming the situation in the state quite bad, the report says that Maoists have taken advantage of the widespread "retreat of governance" in the state.

It spells out in detail how the Left-wing extremists have been extending their areas of influence in absence of good governance.

The report adds that Naxals are involved in extortion, kidnapping and mass killings in areas where the local administration has collapsed.

Incidentally, the IB report has also taken note that Naxals are also involved in "developmental work" in some areas. It says they are developing a minor irrigation project in the area covering Imamganj, Dumariya, Barachatti, Kothi in Gaya district, which is mainly dominated by the erstwhile MCCI.

They are also involved in constructing a small dam at Khajura village of the Dumariya block in the district. The report has also mentioned that Naxals have, of late, increased their activities in eight districts, including East and West Champaran, Sitamarhi, Madhubani, Supaul, Araria, Kishanganj and Sheohar, along Indo-Nepal border.

The IB has identifiedall the 54 police stations areas in eight districts quite sensitive in view of the forthcoming elections.

Touching upon the Naxals' attempt to make contact with Nepali Maoists, the IB informed the MHA that the latter have recently set up "Indo-Nepal Border Regional Committee", an umbrella organisation which has launched a move for co-ordination with Nepali maoists.

The official said the IB had recently submitted similar reports on other Naxal-affected states including Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Orissa and Chhattisgarh as well.

The report would be shared with chief secretaries and director-generals of police of these states on September 16 and later with the chief ministers on September 19.

India and Nepal Maoists to setup bases

Maoists operating in India and Nepal join hands to setup bases and jointly attack India and Nepal

Sudhir Chadda
Sep. 15, 2005

The Maoists rebels operating in India and Nepal have joined hands to create more havoc in the region.

According to media reports from India and Nepal, Maoists operating in India and Nepal have constituted a border regional committee to set up base in new areas in the country.

According to [the] latest intelligence reports, the extremists have constructed a dam in Gaya district of Bihar. The outfits have started levying ''revolutionary tax'' in certain parts [of] Bihar. The report confirms that the extremists have strengthened their base in 32 out of 40 districts in Bihar.

The report, which is with the Union Home Ministry, has revealed that the extremists are operating from the Kaimur hills in the state. They have declared guerrilla zones at Imamgang, Dumarriaha, Koti, and Barachatti in Gaya district and started small-scale irrigation projects.

The entire belt in north Bihar, stretching from East Champaran (Motihari), West Champaran, Madhubani, and Sitamarhi to Seohar districts has become a new hideout for the extremists, who have local support. The porous border with Nepal ensures free and easy travel for the Maoists who are cooperating with local extremists, says the report.

The report says that Maoists have started targeting railway stations and tracks in north Bihar. Talking to this correspondent, a high-ranking official of the union Home Ministry said, "The intelligence report says that Maoists may target Motihari, Samastipur, Ram Bhadrapur, Haya Ghat, Darbhanga, Jai Nagar, Bettiya, and Baghaa railway stations."

Several outfits belonging to the CPI-Maoist [Communist Party of India-Maoist] and CPI-Marxist Leninist groups are active in border districts of Bihar. Among them are Majdoor Kissan Mukti Morcha [Workers Farmers Liberation Front], Majdoor Kissan Sangrami Parishad [Workers Farmers Struggle Council], Jan Sangram Samiti [People's Struggle Association], Bharat Naujawan Sabha [Indian Youth Council], Shramik Sangharsh Manch [Workers'' Struggle Platform] and Nari Mukti Sangarsh Samiti [Women's Freedom Struggle Committee]. These outfits have militant wings like Guerrilla gang, Permanent Red gang, Temporary Red gang, Jan militia, and Gram Raksha Dal [Village Defence Group]. Maoists have their own intelligence group called Gupt Fauji Sangthan (secret intelligence unit). The groups have a well-defined propaganda machinery.

"Both the Centre [Indian Federal Government] and the state governments will have to work in a coordinated manner to deal with the naxalites [Maoist guerillas]. The way they are operating in Bihar is quite shocking. The latest intelligence report confirms that Maoists operating in India and Nepal are working together and have constituted the border region committee," said the official.

Jharkhand police officials received a dressing down from Home Minister

Mahto fire for cops

Ranchi, Sept. 15: Under fire following the spate of Naxalite strikes and criminal attacks, hapless police officials of Jharkhand today received a dressing down from home minister Sudesh Mahto.

Even director-general of police V.D. Ram, who, a few days ago, had ticked off the force in the state, was not spared as Mahto spoke his mind at a meeting called in the wake of the Naxalite massacre in Giridih, the murder of a priest in Simdega and the brewing tension in Gumla and Lohardaga.

Mahto, known for his mood swings, appeared irritable from the beginning. According to sources, the cops had to face the music.

Speaking to The Telegraph, Mahto said the role of the police was under the scanner in connection with the Giridih massacre.

“I visited the spot and spoke to the people. It seems that the local people knew about the rebel attack well in advance and alerted the police, but they still failed to take any action,” he said.

The minister said he had asked the director-general to prepare a detailed report in this connection.

“We should not overlook this. I have asked the DGP to submit a detailed report by September 18 and probe into all aspects of the Giridih massacre. The police force needs to change its attitude to improve performance,” he said.

Mahto accepted that due to the lack of modern facilities, the police failed to take any action against the extremists.

“I agree that there is a big infrastructure problem. Our police stations do not have modern amenities. But we are planning and will soon find a solution. According to our plans, all our police stations will be provided with basic facilities, like proper buildings and arms. We are determined to make the police force so strong that they would not require any external support to combat the Naxalites,” Mahto said.

The minister said he had directed the special branch officials to probe into the tension in Gumla, Lohardaga and Simdega.

“The recent incidents should be an eye-opener for the police. At present, we are trying to find the reason behind the violence. Officials of the special branch have been asked to get cracking,” he said.

The sources said Mahto was particularly angry about the Giridih massacre.

“He has called another meeting on September 18. Senior officials have been asked to submit the probe report in connection with both incidents,” said an official in the home department.

Suspense deepens over naxal leader's disappearance


HYDERABAD: Suspense is building over the alleged capture of top Maoist leader Mallojula Koteshwara Rao, a.k.a Prahlad a.k.a Bimal, by the Chhattisgarh cops. Though police—in both Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh—are denying that he is in custody, naxalite sympathisers insist that he "missed his contact" in Raipur last week and is missing since then.

Prahlad is the number two in the CPI (Maoist) hierarchy after Muppala Lakshman Rao alias Ganapathy. "According to information reaching us, Prahlad sustained injuries in an accident and was to go to Raipur to get treatment with the help of a contact person.

Though he was to reach Raipur last week, he has not yet come in contact with the guide who was to take him to hospital," a Maoist sympathiser told The Times of India on Thursday on condition of anonymity. Maoist poet Gadar is amongst those who have publicly expressed apprehensions that Prahlad is in police custody.

Maoists suspect that the police do not want to announce the capture as they want to bump him off. But AP DGP Swaranjit Sen said he had no knowledge of Prahlad being in custody. In Chhattisgarh, the IGs of both Bastar and Raipur ranges denied taking Prahlad into custody.

As top Maoist leaders remain scattered across the country, they meet occasionally through a network of couriers. The leaders seldom use mobile phones.

Swaranjit Sen in a statement on Thursday said: "It appears to be a clever strategy by the Maoists to blame the police and justify any violent action which they may be contemplating to indulge in future".

IAF choppers to patrol skies during Bihar polls

Patna | September 15, 2005 5:26:12 PM IST

Indian Air Force (IAF) helicopters would be pressed into service for surveillance and operations against extremists during next month's Bihar Assembly polls, said State Chief Secretary G S Kang here today.

Kang said that the State Home Secretary H C Sirohi would be making a formal request to the Defence Ministry for sparing four IAF helicopters.

Besides patrolling the skies in the Naxalite-infested areas during the elections, the choppers will also embark on an area domination exercise to check inter-state Naxalite movement in the sensitive districts of Gaya, Aurangabad, Jehanabad, Arwal and Nawada, during the first phase of polls on October 18.

The state had employed two IAF helicopters for aerial surveillance during the February assembly polls. This time the need for deploying choppers arouse as the banned Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) had given poll-boycott call, saying that it would intensify attacks to disrupt the election process.

Besides aerial surveillance, nearly 600 companies of central paramilitary forces would be deployed in the state to conduct peaceful and fair polls, added Kang, who along with DGP Ashish Ranjan Sinha and Sirohi, flew in to review the poll preparations in the region.

DGP Sinha said that area domination exercises were also being launched to effectively check the inter-state movement of the Naxalites.

Under the exercise, central forces in Naxalite-infested areas would be deployed on the Bihar-Jharkhand borders and in the highly sensitive areas to smoke them out from their strongholds.

The Centre has also agreed to make available 150 companies of Central Reserve Police Force, which are expected to arrive here soon, he said. (ANI)

Left to fight their own battle

- Survivors of Bhelwaghati massacre wait for treatment in hospital


Ten-year-old Rashida Khatoon in the hospital. Picture by Shahnawaz Akhtar

Giridih, Sept. 14: Under fire at home, neglected when battling for their lives.

That, in a nutshell, is the plight of the four villagers wounded in Sunday night’s Naxalite strike on Bhelwaghati, who are undergoing treatment at the Sadar hospital here.

Rashida Khatoon, the 10-year-old girl who lost her father Usuf Mia in the massacre, received a bullet in her right leg. But till now neither she nor her family members knows whether the bullet has been extricated. “Her leg has developed an infection and the wound has worsened,” said Jainul Anasri, the girl’s uncle.

The same is the case with Karo Mia, who received bullets in his left leg. The 30- year old man has no idea what the condition of his leg is. “I have been asking the nurses but they don’t have a clue,” he said.

Dil Mohammad, 70, who escaped by the skin of his teeth as the bullet grazed his head, has not been told whether his wound has been attended to. No doctor has nursed his injury. “Will I ever get well?” he asks.

Teenager Binod Burnawal was struck in his left hand by bomb splinters. Now pus has formed.

None of the four has got any kind of treatment in the hospital, other than being administered saline, even after 24 hours.

The doctors appeared nonchalant. Kamleshwari Prasad, one of the doctors on duty, said: “What can we do in this situation?”

The four received serious injuries in the attack on Bhelwaghati and Dumritola villages, around 70 km from here. They were referred to the hospital yesterday, from the primary health centre in Deori.

Fifteen members of the Gram Suraksha Dal (village protection force) were killed by a band of 300 Maoists who accused them of being working for politicians. At least 50 people received injuries, four of them, seriously .

The police team which reached Bhelwaghati had no doctors with them. The first political leader who got to the spot, Bagodar MLA Vinod Singh, took the four seriously wounded persons to the health centre in Deori, 15 km away, in his Commander jeep. There, the four were given first aid. They were referred to the sadar hospital in Giridih yesterday.

The only relief came from Giridih deputy commissioner Vinay Kumar Ambust, who has given Rs 1,500 to each injured person. Relatives are using the money to purchase medicine from outside. The civil surgeon could not be contacted for comment.


Mysore, Sept. 15 (MRS&RK)- Top Police officials from Andhra Pradesh, experts in handling Naxal menace, are assisting the City Police in tackling the possible Naxal attack, according to City Police Commissioner Praveen Sood.

He told Star of Mysore today that though he had not received any specific report from any source regarding the Naxal attack, measures to such activities had already been taken.

Sood also disclosed that a security review meeting was held here about 15 days ago in the presence of AP officials.

"Threat or no threat from Naxals, we are taking all precautionary measures in view of Dasara," he added.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Chhattisgarh wants ISRO help to identify Maoist bases

Raipur | September 14, 2005 2:25:08 PM IST

Chhattisgarh wants the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to do satellite mapping of its dense jungles to help identify Maoist guerrilla training camps and arms caches, many of which were of Chinese origin and indicated links with militant outfits in Nepal and Sri Lanka.

Chief Minister Raman Singh and Home Minister Ramvichar Netam had met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh earlier this month and apprised him of the seriousness of the Maoist threat.

They urged Manmohan Singh to allow ISRO to carry out a comprehensive survey of Bastar's deep forest area called Abujhmad where the government believes rebels have over 30 major training centres and explosive manufacturing units.

"We urged the prime minister to allow the ISRO to ascertain the guerrilla terror network and provide two army companies, one each of the Gorkha Regiment and Assam Rifles, rather than flooding the state with paramilitary troopers," Netam told IANS here.

One company comprises 1,000 personnel and the Indian government has deployed six Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) companies in the Bastar region bordering Andhra Pradesh and the Surguja region bordering Jharkhand.

Maoists dominate Bastar, Dantewada, Kanker, Rajnandgaon, Surguja, Koriya, Jashpur and Kawardha districts. The state describes the situation as war-like in eight of its 16 districts.

On Sep 3, rebels of the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) set off a landmine in Dantewada, killing 24 CRPF personnel. The incident prompted the government to ban the outfit and its local affiliates.

Netam said the Maoists had foreign arms, connections with Nepal's Maoists and definitely some groups in China.

"In recent months, police have seized several weapons and medical kits, all manufactured in China. I believe they (the Maoists) have connections with Pakistan's intelligence agency and Sri Lanka's rebel Tamil Tigers, but their Chinese connection is beyond doubt," Netam observed.

"At Chhattisgarh's special request to Manmohan Singh, the centre has announced a meeting of chief ministers of the nine worst affected states Sep 19 to be chaired by union Home Minister Shivraj Patil to deliberate on the Maoist menace," Netam claimed.


Cops face fire over massacre


Ranchi, Sept. 13: All problems, including Naxalites, could be tackled if the men-in-uniform remained on their toes and carried out their duties, director-general of police Vishnu Dayal Ram is said to have told his force at a confidential meeting held in the aftermath of the Giridh massacre.

Yesterday’s massacre left 15 members of the Gram Suraksha Samiti (GSS), a group founded to fight the red brigade, dead; killed by the Maoists.

According to sources, the DGP was “very” angry with the local police force for failing to react despite having the knowledge of a possible Maoist attack.

Everyone from the police superintendents, deputy inspector generals to the inspector generals reportedly faced the music.

As a senior police official said: “He was not at all happy. And it was an obvious slip-up on the part of the police. The villagers were always warning the police that the village could be attacked anytime. In fact, the Maoists had blown up a school too. But even then the police did not take any action. Moreover, the force arrived more than 15 hours after the incident.”

Policemen have been strictly instructed not to ignore tip-off given by villagers. “The policemen have been asked to remain on high alert. No one can be lazy. The need is to act immediately,” added another official.

“We have been asked to gather details and report it to the senior officer. All the cases that come up before an officer should be taken up without any delay. The officials have also been asked to be very serious when dealing with such kinds of incidents. No lapse in duty will be tolerated,” he pointed out.

The SPs of different districts, especially those serving in the Naxalite hotbeds, have been asked continuously inspect their respective areas.

Ram is said to have told his force that routine and able-policing could solve all the problems.

The issue of pending electricity bills was also discussed at the meeting. Jharkhand police owes over Rs 1 crore approximately to the Jharkhand State Electricity Board and some of these bills are pending since 2000.

Neyaz Ahmad, the additional director-general of police (modernisation and finance) said the police has paid Rs 3 crore last year. “We are working towards it. At present, not much of the dues is outstanding,” he added.

Civilian force lives in fear


Jamshedpur, Sept 13: Fear stalks the members of the Ghatshila-based Nagarik Suraksha Samity (NSS), following the macabre killing of 15 persons belonging to Gram Suraksha Samity (GSS), in Giridih district yesterday.

Like the GSS, the NSS too is involved in combating the Naxalite problem in the Ghurabanda and Dumuria areas of the Ghatshila sub- division. They claim support from the district police was not forthcoming any more. “Like the GSS, our organisation is also vulnerable. And the rebels are aware of the fact that the district police is not taking much interest in NSS,” the NSS members lamented.

Recently, the rebels had put up posters in different villages of Ghurabandha, castigating the NSS members for being the “brokers” of the district police. They also vowed to teach the members a befitting lesson at an appropriate time. “The organisation is at crossroads as the district police has stopped taking any interest in us,” claimed the NSS chief, Shanker Hembram.

In the wake of yesterday’s incident at Giridih, the demoralised members of the NSS have decided to meet the state DGP, B.D. Ram, this month, to seek his help. Brainchild of the erstwhile district superintendent of police Arun Oraon, the NSS was floated way back in March 2003, to help the police in tackling the Naxalites.

Comprising of about 150 youths from different villages, it was known as the invisible arm of the district police. After Oraon departed, the district police's priorities towards the outfit changed. “The police have also stopped providing us with logistic support like boots, torchlight, bows and arrows. There has been no gesture from the district police that would encourage us to take on the Naxalies,” lamented Hembram and added that the police bodyguards that were provided to some of the senior members of NSS were reduced recently.

However, the deputy superintendent of police of Ghatshila, S.K. Burnwal, denied that the district police is neglecting the NSS.

‘Saviour’ battles on twin fronts


Sikni (Latehar), Sept. 13: “He must be somewhere in his 40’s; tall, a little plum, a tyrant who loves to kill and plunder without a reason; a criminal who calls himself a Naxalite.”

Ask the Latehaar police and this is how they describe Loha Singh, the commander-in-chief of the Jharkhand Sangharsh Jan Mukti Morcha (JSJMM), a terror in Latehar district and parts of Gumla.

But in person, he seems to be totally different. In his late 20’s or early 30’s (he does not remember his age), he looks strong and active and stays away from alcohol and tobacco.

He prays to Sarna (the god of nature) for over 2 hours everyday, is mysteriously calm and speaks only when required.

Talking exclusively to The Telegraph, Singh explained that the CPI (Maoist)’s sudden hunger for political mileage had forced the JSJMM to stand up against them.

The Maoists have forgotten that the crux of the armed struggle is against the oppressors, he added.

Convincing Singh for a meeting was a difficult task. It took a series of phone calls by our source from Sikni Chowk and a walk for about 30 minutes through the foliage around the narrow lanes of Sikni village.

After waiting for almost 90 minutes another contact approached us and we were taken to an isolated house where we had to wait for another 20 minutes. Soon, Singh appeared on a motorbike with his bodyguard, Babulal Marandi.

By now, Singh’s accomplice had surrounded the area.

“I am not in the habit of meeting with the media. But as you have come from an English newspaper, I agreed,” he said with a smile.

Earlier, the group was a part of the People’s War Group (PWG) and was called SJMM. Sources informed that Bhuvneshwar Singh and Parmeshwar Singh, both residents of Kita village in Latehaar, formed the SJMM. They followed a comrade Anju, an active member of the PWG.

The then area commander of Chandwa, Pankaj, asked the duo to start an armed movement against the landlords in the area.

But after sometime Pankaj sided with the landlords and stole many weapons belonging to the SJMM. This started a fight between the two groups.

Anju tried to bridge the gap but was killed. Pankaj blamed SJMM for the killing and attacked Kita in 1992, killing 8 villagers.

Following the massacre, SJMM’s separation from the PWG became permanent. They became the worst of enemies.

Bhuvneshwar’s nephew, Loha Singh, took charge of the outfit in the late nineties and the name was changed from SJMM to JSJMM after Jharkhand was formed.

Singh said: “It is a war that we have to fight. Earlier it was a battle against the oppressors. But now it is a war against both the oppressors and the Maoists. We have never refuted the fact that we are not Naxalites but then, we are totally different from the CPI (Maoist).

“They forcibly take our ladies and rape them. Our youths are also taken away. The government and the police do not listen to us. There has to be someone to resist this.”

The Naxalite leader further added: “More than 90 per cent of the officials in both the IPS and the IAS cadre, in Jharkhand, are from Bihar. Jharkhand is perhaps the only state in the country that has no culture or history of its own. It was Laloo Prasad Yadav who sowed the seeds of Naxalism in the state. Go to a village in Jharkhand and witness the conditions yourself. The Maoists come whenever they want and ask for food. The poor people are badly beaten and even killed if they don’t agree to their commands. Then the police come and do the same. They put the innocent in prisons just to fill up their quota.”

He then said if the situation is such where can the poor get redressal. “Where can a common and poor villager go then?” he asked.

The Naxalite said they had taken up arms to help the locals.

Singh said: “Even we know the meaning of Naxalism. It is based upon an ideology. They — CPI (Maoist) — may still call themselves Maoists but the ideology is all gone now. The police and the government call us criminals. Ask the people and they will tell you the truth. We are freedom fighters and love our land. We unfurl the National Flag on Republic day and Independence Day. Our group may be small but then we have always crushed them (Maoist) in any clash.”

Singh’s bodyguard, Babulal Marandi, quipped in. “Don’t go by my name. I am not like the former chief minister. Why will someone from Bihar do anything for a different state? All the IGs, DIGs, ADGPs and the IAS officers are from Bihar. Why would they be concerned about the development of Jharkhand? Human being is just born once and everyone has got the right to live with prestige. We will fight back. A bullet for a bullet,” he remarked.

Singh further said: “It is a fight for survival. These politicians, who give long speeches against us, are criminals themselves. They travel in costly cars while the people die of hunger. It is a fight that we have to win. Jharkhand has to be saved.”

Carnage wake-up call


Ranchi, Sept. 13: A sombre chief minister Arjun Munda was today forced to admit that Maoists in the state are taking advantage of the lack of basic infrastructure in the rural areas.

He also acknowledged that improving the socio-economic lot of the people alone could help the state tackle extremism.

The stark realisation was reinforced apparently by the chief minister’s visit yesterday to the site of the massacre by Maoists at Bhelwaghati on the Jharkhand-Bihar border in Giridih.

The visitors were forced to wade through two rivers and negotiate 16 kilometres of undulating, virtually unmotorable road to reach the village, where they had to face the ire of the villagers. Slogan-shouting villagers had even forced former chief minister Babulal Marandi and Munda to beat a hasty retreat.

A perturbed chief minister today called a review meeting at his residence and invited Marandi also to attend it. Nearly all the secretaries attended the meeting, which took stock of the ground situation in Giridih and Koderma and of Naxalite activities.

The brief visit to Bhelwaghati was Munda’s first visit to the site of a Maoist strike as chief minister. On all earlier occasions he had ignored the carnage and sent the director-general of police instead.

The first-hand experience, officials today conceded, had enabled Munda to realise for the first time the difficulties faced by the security forces as well. The police actually reached the site nearly 12 hours after the carnage, though the district headquarters is barely 58 km from the village.

A grim chief minister today pointed out that as many as 21 districts shared borders with neighbouring states. This too was making the task of Maoists easy, he said, as they escaped into neighbouring states after striking in Jharkhand.

The chief minister directed officials to chalk out a comprehensive package for the development of Koderma and Giridih, specially areas with difficult terrain and which are inaccessible by road.

The non-completion of two bridges over the rivers Sonvay and Loi annoyed the chief minister who ordered departmental proceedings against the executive engineer concerned. The bridges would have connected Bhelwaghati with Deori and Giridih and security forces could have reached the site faster.

Officials apprised the chief minister that several road projects were held up in the rural areas because the forest department had not issued the necessary clearance.

The chief secretary was directed to identify officials responsible for the delay and take suitable action against them.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Naxalite leader Sanyal warns of peasants’ stir

Sudipta Chanda

in Naxalbari
Sept. 13 — Naxalite leader Mr Kanu Sanyal and his followers today declared war against the proposed acquisition of 350 acres of agricultural land at Hathighisa near here. The land is being considered for setting up a centre for a paramilitary force.
“Almost 85 percent of the people residing in this land belong to the scheduled tribe category. Moreover, they have title deeds of the land. This could be the beginning of a second peasants’ movement if they try to acquire this land,” CPI-ML general secretary Mr Kanu Sanyal cautioned today.
According to Mr Sanyal and the locals, land reforms department officials have already surveyed the land, which covers three mouzas namely Sebdella, Budhkaran and Barajharu and are planning to hand over the land to the paramilitary force.
“Over our dead body,” said Mr Prem Prasad Sharma a cropper from Barajharu. ”They can get the land for free if they kill us,” rued Mr Sharma who feeds a family of 10 off the two-bigha land he owns at Barajharu. The situation is almost the same with every villager.
“It is strange that the authorities are planning to acquire this land, which churns out three crops a year instead of acquiring land from the nearby Dalkajhar area, which was a reserve forest in the records till 1977 but does not have a tree to show now as the whole area has been deforested by settlers from across Nepal,” Mr Sanyal alleged.
Naxalbari block land reforms officials do not have an answer to the question although they said that the matter is still at the rudimentary stage. They also denied any political pressure.
“It is true that a particular paramilitary force sought 350 acres of land in one patch to set up a centre. They have also inspected the area in question and have expressed satisfaction but, nothing concrete has happened as yet and no survey has been conducted either,” said Mr Debdas Naskar, revenue officer, Naxalbari land department office.
The Darjeeling district magistrate, who is the final authority in such matters in the district, also confirmed the development: “A paramilitary organisation has asked for 350 acres of land in that area. The matter is being looked into,” DM Mr Ariz Aftab said.”
The residents of the three mouzas are but dead against relinquishing their land and be it septuagenarians like Uru Munda, Budhan Munda or Bhikni Munda or those of the younger generation like Newalal Munda or Bijay Kishore, they have decided to build up resistance against the proposed acquisition.
“The next time people from the paramilitary or the land reforms department come to measure or survey this land, we shall not allow them to enter the zone,” Mr Sanyal threatened.
The area has several villages and except Sebdella, which houses Mr Kanu Sanyal and his followers’ residences and the CPI-ML office, all other villages have returned CPI-M panchayats. They are up in arms as well, or so it seems.
The Hathighisa CPI-M today submitted a deputation at the Naxalbari land department office and also brought out a protest rally in the area

CMs of Naxal-hit states to meet on Sept 19

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 13
In the wake of spurt in naxal violence, especially in Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil has decided to hold a meeting of Chief Ministers of nine states severely affected by left wing extremism here on September 19 to chalk out a new action plan to curb the menace.

The recent incidents in Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand clearly indicate that the Naxals are targeting innocent people in those villages where there has been local resistance.

The proposed meeting assumes significance as some of the states severely affected by Naxalism, especially Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand, have been repeatedly demanding a “uniform policy” as well as a “united and coordinated operation” from all the affected states.

Meanwhile, condemning the incident in a Jharkhand village in which 15 persons were killed on September 11, a Home Ministry press note said “there has been local resistance by people against Naxalite violence in Chhattisgarh and other states”.

Observing that the Jharkhand attack was against members of a village defence committee, it said “this is more out of desperation because the Naxals feel threatened by the growing anti-Naxalite movement among the people”.

The Jharkhand attack by suspected Naxalites had taken place within a week of a landmine blast near Bijapur in Chhattisgarh killing 24 policemen, including 22 from the CRPF.

‘Cobra’ AP going Bihar way: CPM

- By Venkat Parsa in New Delhi and U. Sudhakar Reddy in Hyderabad

Sept. 13: CPI(M) politburo member Sitaram Yechury on Monday expressed concern that Andhra Pradesh is going the Bihar way with the emergence of caste-based private armies like Nallamalla Cobra (Nallatrachu).

Mr Yechury said that in the north private armies are used primarily to oppress the weaker sections. The police and the administration do not help the private armies’ victims as they lack clout.

Most problems are rooted in backwardness and greater development is the answer, Mr Yechury said. In a sense, even the demand for a separate Telangana emerges from backwardness, he said. The CPI(M) opposes statehood for Telangana. For tackling backwardness, he said, the government should formulate a well-funded specific development plan.

Land and land rights are at the core of the problem, Mr Yechury said, adding that violence breaks out when these rights are diluted. The state government should address these issues in right earnest; if timely measures are not initiated, the situation could soon worsen, he said.

If such caste-based private armies are allowed to survive, a majority of attacks would be directed against dalits and the landless poor. Most of the private armies would be operated by rich, upper-caste people. For them, the weaker sections are the target, he said, adding that in addition to organised massacres, private armies use dehumanising programmes to insult the weaker sections.

Private armies take the guise of anti-Maoist groups and spring up after a major attack by extremists. Fear Vikas, Green Tigers, Nalladandu, Red Tigers, Tirumala Tigers, Palnadu Tigers, Kakatiya Cobras, Narsa Cobras, Nallamalla Nallatrachu (Cobras) and Kranthi Sena are some of the gangs. The gangs have fiery logos featuring cobras, tigers and guns.

Narsa Cobras was formed after the Maoists shot Maktal Congress legislator Narsi Reddy in Mahbubnagar district on August 15. Narsa Cobras has already killed Kanakachari, a backward castes person, for allegedly being an alleged Maoist sympathiser.

Tirumala Tigers was formed after the attack on then chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu on October 2003 at Alipiri, at the Tirumala foothills. Among the oldest is Green Tigers, formed in the then Naxal base of North Telangana in 1994.

The Maoists have since set up base in the Nallamala forests bordering four districts in central Andhra. Among these, the Nallatrachus are said to targetdalits.

The group takes its name from the deadly cobras of the Nallamala forests.

On Sunday, this group threatened balladeer Gaddar with death.

It has claimed responsibility for the September 10 killing of M. Prasad of Kula Nirmulana Porata Samithi (samithi for eradicating caste). Prasad, who belonged to the scheduled castes, was killed the day KNPS state president Duddu Prabkahar was released on bail.

The Nallamala Nallatrachu has threatened to kill residents in a dalit colony in Prakasam district, a report from Ongole said. The police has launched a search for Nallatrachu activists in the area. The scare began after unidentified persons wearing masks went around houses at night, questioning residents.

Nallatrachu leader Neelakantu warned Gaddar: "Your brothers Vara Vara Rao and Kalyan Rao are in jail. You are still talking for the Maoists. Stop that or face the consequences."

Gaddar told this correspondent, "These gangs are sponsored by the government to curb revolution and people’s democratic movements. I have asked the government to provide me with a licence so that I can get a gun to protect myself. They refused." Two personal security officers were posted for the security of Gaddar.

Gaddar escaped an attack in April 1997. "Green Tigers have already pumped bullets into my spine. Now this is the latest threat." he said. "Let them threaten me, I will not leave this path. I will sing for the people till my last breath. They can’t jail my songs, they can’t shoot my songs, they can’t kill my songs."

Director-general of police Swaranjit Sen denied that the police was backing these gangs. "Where is the need? The police is doing everything as per the law to tackle the Maoist menace. The police is not supporting them." Mr Sen added, "The police will investigate (the killings) impartially. I feel that this is a natural reaction against the atrocities of the Maoists."

Mr Sen stoutly denied the caste angle. He said "We have no information that the Cobra gangs are caste-based. They are reactionary forces to the Maoists. Their victims are not too many. Only two cases were reported, and these depended on the local situation. Based on two incidents how can we say that the victims or the accused belong to specific caste groups."

Former naxalite Nayeemuddin, alias Nayeem, is suspected to be behind some of the killings. Nayeem is said to be associated with the Nalladandu gang. "The gangs are formed by former naxals, relatives of the victims of naxals, extreme elements. The gangs earlier killed human rights activists Azam Ali and Purushottam. We suspect that these gangs have cyanide weapons that can kill easily," said a senior police official.

Some former naxals are fielding their associates in the forthcoming municipal elections. It is alleged that Syed Asgar, an associate of Nayeem, was unanimously elected because no one dared contest against him in a municipal ward in Bhongir town, about 50 km from Hyderabad. He secured a Congress ticket.

Naxal attempt to destroy machinery at Polavaram thwarted

Hyderabad: A special police party engaged in combing operations thwarted efforts by CPI(ML) New Democracy extremists efforts to destroy machinery stationed at the Polavaram project site in Godavari district today after brief exchange of fire.

On a tip off, the police party reached the scene, where the left wing extremists tried to destroy the machinery being used for the work. Seeing the police party, the 12-member extremist group opened fire and police returned fire, according to police.

There were no casualties on either side and the extremists escaped into the deep jungle under cover of darkness.

Police recovered ten live rounds of .303 caliber, five kit bags, three tents, utensils, clothes and party literature from the scene.

Giridih Attack : review

Maoists massacre 15 in Jharkhand

DH News Service,Ranchi:

Villagers of Giridih district have mobilised a formidable anti-Naxalite campaign. The extremists retaliated on Sunday, spreading terror in the area.

Fifteen persons, a majority of them members of the village protection group (VPG), were gunned down by Maoist guerrillas at Beluwaghati under Beuri police station limits in Giridih district of Jharkhand past Sunday midnight, police said here on Monday.

Six persons including a girl were also injured in the attack. The condition of the girl is stated to be critical.

The massacre was in retaliation to anti-Naxalite operations launched by villagers across the district.

The massacre

According to the police, armed Maoists, numbering between 150 to 200, swooped down on Beluwaghati bordering Bihar at around 2:30 am. Eyewitnesses told the police that after entering the village, the Naxalites scoured every house for members of the village protection group. Fifteen villagers were pulled out of their houses and gunned down. The Naxalites also inflicted serious injuries on four persons including a girl. They blew up a house and a school building using explosives during the raid.

According to the officer-in-charge of the Beuri police station, people of Beluwaghati and neighbouring villages had remained defiant in their opposition to Naxalites despite the extremists abducting 13 villagers and killing one John Hembrom, a resident of Beluwaghati village on July 23 last. The extremists had also chopped off the ears and hands of three others on the same day.

State Home Secretary J B Tubid termed Sunday’s massacre as an attempt to terrorise the villagers who had forged a formidable anti-Naxalite front in Giridih district. He said by forming the village protection groups (VPGs), residents of Beluwaghati and neighbouring villagers had launched an offensive against the extremists, dealing a major blow to Naxalite activities in the area.

Recently, a hardcore Naxalite, Rawani Thakur, was apprehended in Giridih district and some more extremists surrendered because of the pressure mounted by the villagers, he said.

Meanwhile, Sunday’s massacre has sparked off tension in and around Beluwaghati. The police have launched combing operations in the area to nab the extremists responsible for the massacre. At the time of filing this report, State Home Minister Sudesh Mahto, DGP V D Ram and other top civil and police officials were camping at the massacre site.

Desperate act: CM

Jharkhand Chief Minister Arjun Munda has condemned the incident. Before rushing to Beluwaghati, Munda described the massacre as a desperate act.

“The people of the State have rejected their ideology and hence they (Naxalites) are feeling defeated now. This is one reason why they have targeted people from the weakest strata of the society,” he said.

Rejecting any dialogue with the Maoists, the Chief Minister said they would be dealt with an iron hand.

In yet another incident, the Palamau police arrested a hardcore Naxalite on Monday morning. The rebel, identified as Laloo Singh, was an area commander.

Naxalite blow to Paswan ‘front’


New Delhi, Sept. 12: Lok Janshakti Party chief Ram Vilas Paswan’s dreams of cobbling together a “third front” in Bihar seem to have been shattered by the most powerful constituent of this front, the CPI(ML).

The CPI(ML) general secretary, Deepankar Bhattacharya, has said the only understanding his party has reached so far is with the CPI.

Contrary to Paswan’s claims, he said, the CPI(ML) has no understanding with the LJP as of now. “We’ve had seat-sharing talks only with the CPI. About 120 seats have been discussed. They are free to do what they want in the rest of the seats.

“So far as Paswan is concerned, there is no possibility of any alliance with him as long as he keeps appealing to the Congress to join him. He has to distance himself from the Congress.”

The CPI(ML) had won seven seats in the last Assembly elections. According to Bhattacharya, the party has a strong presence in at least 50 Assembly seats.

“But all of it does not get reflected in the election results because elections are a very unequal battle for us. In terms of the money spent, the muscle power and the state apparatus parties like the RJD use, we are at a disadvantage.

“But still, we have a presence because ours is the only party that has taken a consistent ideological stand against criminalisation of the state and corruption in Bihar. We have fought with the corrupt and ideologically bankrupt parties for 20 years and people recognise that now,” he said.

Bhattacharya has floated the idea of a combined Left front in Bihar with the CPI(ML), CPI, RSP and the Forward Bloc. He said the LJP cannot be a part of this combination as long as Paswan keeps his ties intact with the Congress.

Bhattacharya said the CPI wants to keep its alliance with Paswan while having an understanding with the CPI(ML) on a large number of seats.

“We are looking at a strong Left assertion in Bihar. If the CPI draws some lesson from the last polls and works with us wholeheartedly, there is no reason why we will not do well in Bihar. Democratic revival of the Left will happen from Bihar, the most crucial state in the Hindi heartland. Our comrades in the local unit of the CPI also agree with this.”

D. Raja, the CPI’s national secretary, said the decision will be taken in a two-day meeting beginning September 16.

“It is true that we have had extensive talks with the CPI(ML) and there is a broad Left alliance. The CPI(ML) has made its position clear vis-à-vis Paswan. But we don’t necessarily share their views about the LJP. We will have a final look at the situation in our forthcoming meeting,” Raja said.

According to the CPI(ML), Paswan’s third front in the last elections was a “Congress creation”. “Paswan has localised pockets of influence in areas like Samastipur, Vaishali etc. in north Bihar. But last time, he won three seats in Jehanabad which has traditionally been a Congress stronghold. People like Ram Asrey Singh, a die-hard Congressman, joined Paswan. A lot of Bhumihars supported him. There was a convergence of all sorts of powerful interests. But that is not the case this time. Of the 29 MLAs he had, 22 have left him. Paswan is surely not going to get the same support. The CPI should learn from this and come with us wholeheartedly,” Bhattacharya said.

Home Ministry for a Unified strategy

Home recalls Plan A: Unified strategy


NEW DELHI, SEPTEMBER 12 The Union Home Ministry has convened a meeting of chief ministers of Naxal- affected states on September 19 to work out a unified counter strategy. Soon after the peace initiative between Naxalites and the Andhra Pradesh government broke down in

February, several quarters, including security forces, had called for a unified strategy. The Home Ministry, however, overlooked this and had maintained that since law and order is a state subject, each state is free to frame its own strategy to deal with Naxalites. It, however, added that dialogue was a preferred method for the states to resolve the issue with Naxalites.

But at least 15 Naxal-affected sates had asked the Union Home Ministry to coordinate and frame a unified strategy at the last chief ministers’ conference in May. Though Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil was quick to announce a high-level committee for this purpose, the committee has not met even once.

Senior Ministry officials said chief ministers of at least 10 Naxal- affected states have already agreed to attend the meeting. Officials also said that the ministry had asked each state to submit its proposal for a unified strategy across the nation which can be taken up at the meeting.


Naxal manuals in AP tell how tell how to attack security forces

Bust cop patrol:


NEW DELHI, SEPTEMBER 12 The CRPF has, for the first time, stumbled on operational manuals that give tactical details on planting landmines and attacking security forces, among other things, to Left-wing extremist cadre.

While the six manuals, in Telugu, are being translated, Home Ministry sources confirmed that these books analyse field tactics of security forces and spell out the modus operandi to be adopted by the Naxalites while attacking security forces. The manuals go so far as to suggest tactical improvements for inflicting higher casualties on security forces. Anti-Naxal operations carried out by the security forces have also been analysed in great detail.

The manuals are soon expected to be made available to CRPF battalions involved in anti-Naxal operations. ‘‘The manuals give a deep insight into how organised and close-knit the Naxalites are,’’ a senior Home Ministry official said.

Sources said the manuals teach how to lay mines and improvised explosive devices (IED) and ambush security forces. Naxalites had mined and ambushed a Mine Protected Vehicle (MPV) in Bijapur district in Chhattisgarh recently, killing 24 CRPF personnel. The MPV provided to the CRPF to protect against landmines was damaged. The attack was preceded by a Naxal operation in Narayangarh district of Chhattisgarh where an MPV carrying the local SP was ambushed. The MPV was damaged, but unlike the Bijapur attack, it withstood the blast. The SP and two others in the MPV had to be airlifted by Army helicopters to safety.

Officials say it is by watching and anlaysing every operation by security forces that Naxalites learnt from the Narayangarh operation how to blow up the MPV, which was executed in Bijapur. The manuals also detail how to track security forces on the road they are likely to take when proceeding for an attack or returning from an operation before laying the mines.

Manual lessons

• How to lay mines and IEDs and ambush security patrols. Naxalites had ambushed a mine-protected vehicle in Bijapur recently

• Naxals studied Narayangarh operation to figure out how to blow up mine protected vehicle

• How to raid villages and police stations and security installations

• In June, at least 200 Naxalites from across the country carried out an attack in East Champaran in the same manner


Naxals raid Jharkhand village, shoot, slit throats

Tuesday September 13 2005 00:00 IST

RANCHI: Jharkhand's Left wing extremists, who have joined hands with cadres of the CPI (Maoist) of Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh, struck in a big way on Sunday night when some 300 of them raided a village in Giridih and killed at least 15 persons who had formed a village defence committee (VDC) to resist the Naxals.

Six others were injured in the incident at Bhelua Ghati. Those killed were either shot or had their throats slit.
Police said the heavily armed Naxals picked their targets after summoning the villagers. People were killed because they had rejected Naxal activities, police said.

Chief Minister Arjun Munda, accompanied by former Chief Minister Babulal Marandi who represents Giridih in Lok Sabha, rushed to the massacre site and promised action.

DIG Neeraj Sinha said the injured were admitted to nearby hospitals. The victims were members of the VDC set up to oppose the Naxals.

Before leaving for the spot, DGP B D Ram told newsmen that the extremists had been frustrated with the spate of surrenders and arrests of zonal and area commanders. This seemed to be a reprisal attack, he said.

Home Secretary J B Tubid said the VDCs had been resisting the extremists for some time now

Naxals torch state transport bus in Vidarbha region

Nagpur, Sept 12 (PTI) A state transport bus was set afire today allegedly by a group of naxalites between Yerka and Tavetolla in naxal-infested Gadchiroli district in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra, police said.
Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) bus from Gadchiroli depot was plying on Gadchiroli-Manpur (Chattisgarh) when naxalites from Tippagarh dalam (group) stopped the bus by blocking the road by placing stones on the road, police said.

They ordered all the 43 passengers and the driver and the conductor to alight from the vehicle and after breaking the diesel tank set ablaze the bus.

All the passengers, including about 10-15 women, were safe, police said.

The driver and conductor reached the taluka head quarter and reported the incident to police.

This is the third such incident within one month.

On August 21, naxalites set ablaze a MSRTC bus near Kothan village in Gadchiroli when the vehicle was plying between Murumgao and Gadchiroli.

On September seven, armed naxalities set afire MSRTC bus near Kalipahadi in the district. PTI

Monday, September 12, 2005

Andhra Pradesh to keep watch on anti-Maoist elements

Hyderabad | September 12, 2005 6:25:07 PM IST

Denying the allegation that police were involved in killing Maoist sympathisers, Andhra Pradesh Home Minister K. Jana Reddy Monday said the state government would deal firmly with anti-Maoists elements.
"We are not supporting murder of any person whether he is a pro-Maoist or anti-Maoist. We will keep a close watch on all such elements and will deal firmly with them," he said after a high-level meeting with police officials to review the law and order situation.

He said special teams would be constituted to curb the activities of such outfits.

The meeting was called to discuss, among other things, the murder of a Maoist sympathizer by the Nallamalla Nallatrachu or "Nallamalla black cobras" in Prakasam district and threats by the outfit to eliminate other Maoist sympathizers including revolutionary balladeer Gaddar.

Jana Reddy said it was the duty of police to maintain law and order and the allegations that they floated these outfits were not true. He asked police to work to remove such doubts among people.

Maoist sympathizers and human rights activists have alleged that police had formed such outfits comprising surrendered guerrillas to target them.

Director general of police Swaranjit Sen said that the actions appeared to be coming from victims of Maoist violence.

"Every action has a reaction. There is a limit to everything. The Maoists have pushed villagers beyond that limit, forcing them to hit back," he said.

The state police chief, however, said police were not supporting any murder and would take necessary action to maintain law and order.

The Nallatrachu was alleged to be involved in the murder of Mannem Prasad, an activist of the Kula Nirmulana Porata Samiti (KNPS), an alleged frontal organization of the Communist Party of Indian (Maoist). He was killed at Singarayakonda in Prakasam district Saturday.

Gaddar received a threatening letter from the same outfit the next day.

The home minister said that while Gaddar's application for a gun licence was still under consideration, the state government would provide security to him or anybody else facing the threat to life.


Maoist sympathisers face death threats

Hyderabad | September 12, 2005 4:55:40 PM IST

The killing of a Maoist ally by an outfit allegedly backed by police and death threats to revolutionary balladeer Gaddar have spread panic among Maoist sympathizers and human rights activists in the state.
After receiving threats from the outfit Nallamalla Nallatrachu, Gaddar has approached the state government for a gun licence. However, the government has turned down his request.

In a letter, one Neelakantha, claiming to be the secretary of Nallamalla Nallatrachu, asked Gaddar to stop supporting Maoists or face consequences.

Gaddar, who had acted as a Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) emissary along with revolutionary writers Kalyan Rao and Varavara Rao in peace talks with the government last year, said there was a serious threat to the lives of all those raising their voice against state repression.

"These state-sponsored outfits like Nallatrachu, Narsa Cobra, Green Tigers pose a serious threat," he said and asked the government to make its stand clear on these outfits.

Gaddar, who was injured in an attack by one such outfit in 1997, said the government was not only killing Maoists in stage-managed gun battles but was also trying to suppress all democratic and people's movements.

Gaddar received a threat a day after Mannem Prasad, an activist of the Kula Nirmulana Porata Samiti (KNPS), was killed at Singarayakonda in Prakasam district by some unidentified persons Saturday.

The killers left a note signed by Neelakantha.

KNPS, working for removing caste discrimination, is considered a frontal organization of Maoists. Police suspect Prasad was involved in a bomb attack on the Prakasam district superintendent of police, Mahesh Chandra Laddha, in April. The officer had escaped the attack but three bystanders were killed.

Rights activists alleged that the police had formed several outfits with the help of surrendered guerrillas to eliminate Maoist sympathizers. Nayeem, a surrendered Maoist allegedly backed by the police, was involved in the killings of two rights activists a few years ago.

Varavara Rao and Kalyan Rao are also facing death threats from these outfits. They were last month arrested after the government re-imposed a ban on CPI-Maoist and its frontal organizations including the Revolutionary Writers' Association or Virasam.

Virasam leader Chalasani Prasad recently complained to the state human rights commission and the Lokayukta (public ombudsman) that the lives of Gaddar, Varavara Rao, Kalyana Rao and some 20 public personalities including civil liberties activists G. Haragopal, K. Balagopal and S. Jeevan Kumar, were under constant threat from outfits like Narsa Cobras and Kakatiya Cobras.


Maoists in Jharkhand out on massive recruitment drive

Ranchi | September 12, 2005 4:55:12 PM IST

Maoist guerrillas in Jharkhand have launched a leaflet campaign urging one member of each family to join their ranks to fight against what they call the repressive policies of the state government and the police.
The Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) has launched the drive, with reports of the outfit's central committee distributing pamphlets in Chotanagpur, calling for new members from rural areas of Ranchi, West Singhbhumi, Palamau, Garwah and other districts of the state.

The police are trying to stop people from heeding the call.

"Give one member of your family to fight against repression and suppression carried out by the government and the police," the pamphlets say.

The activists are camping in villages and trying to convince youths to join their organisation.

"We have received information that the Maoists have formed several groups for the recruitment drive in rural areas of the state," a senior police official involved in their crackdown said Sunday.

"The Maoist activists are holding meetings, distributing pamphlets and instigating rural people against the government and police."

The police are planning counter-offensives to prevent people from joining the outfit, he said.

The drive assumes significance in the wake of the forthcoming local body polls.

"The Maoists are trying to ensure victory for the candidates they support,"
the official said.

The guerrillas are active in 16 of the 22 districts of the state. Violence has claimed the lives of nearly 510 people, including 210 policemen during the last five years.


17 killed in Jharkhand Maoist attack

Ranchi | September 12, 2005 4:55:41 PM IST

At least 17 people were killed in a massive and brutal midnight attack by Maoist guerrillas in a Jharkhand village, police said Monday.
Around 150 Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) rebels raided Beluwadih Ghati village in Giridih district, about 190 km from Ranchi, in what police sees as a retaliatory strike.

"Seventeen people were killed in the attack," G.S. Rath, additional director of police (Special Branch), told IANS.

The rebels blasted four houses with dynamites and fired at villagers, police said. The attack went on for three hours. The Maoists also blasted a primary school.

"Bihar Maoists played a key role in the attack. A meeting of Bihar and Jharkhand Maoists had taken place last month in which it was decided to avenge the death of an area commander," Rath said.

A district police official said: "Those killed were members of the village protection group (VPG) who had not been allowing Maoists to hold public meetings."

"Their resistance had driven away Maoists from the area. This irked the CPI-Maoist and the butchering of people was planned to create terror among the villagers.

The attack, one of the biggest in the last four years, has come as a major setback for the state police. Four years ago, Maoists had butchered 14 people in Beltu village of Hazaribagh as they too had formed a resistance group against the rebels.

Chief Minister Arjun Munda condemned the killings saying: "Maoist menace will be dealt with firmly. We will not compromise while acting against the rebels."

Maoist guerrillas are active in 16 of the state's 22 districts. Nearly 510 people, including 210 policemen, have been killed in the last five years. ns/pg (IANS)

Centre must formulate policy on naxalites: CPI

Raipur, Sep 12 (UNI) Communist Party of India (CPI) General Secretary A B Bardhan today said the Centre must formulate a general policy to deal with the problem of naxalites.

''It's a problem being faced by several states'', he told a news conference here.

Referring to Chhattisgarh government's move to impose a ban on naxalite outfits, Mr Bardhan said his party was opposed to any such step as it would affect the possibilities of bringing the naxalites to the negotiating table.

Stating that the solution to the problem could be found only through talks, the CPI General Secretary said he felt that it was only because of faulty policies that naxalites had been able to spread their activities to many states.

Opposing the move to promulgate the 'Chhattisgarh Special Peoples' Security Ordinance, 2005' to ban naxalites, he said steps must be initiated for the socio-economic upliftment of the backward regions, where naxalites are active.

When pointed out that the Andhra Pradesh government's talks with the naxalites had failed, Mr Bardhan quipped ''it was just a show''.

Referring to 'salwa judum'-- the ongoing movement in Bastar region of Chhattisgarh against naxalites--, the CPI General Secretary said ''it is a campaign instigated by the state government, a section of leaders of the ruling BJP and the main opposition Congress''.

Observing that the campaign amounted to pitting the poor tribals against the armed naxalites, he said it would only result in bloodshed in the tribal areas.

Discord in Left camp


New Delhi, Sept. 11: Cracks seem to be surfacing in the Left Front, with its partners talking in different voices. The CPI, RSP and the Forward Bloc are upset with the CPM, though the reasons are not the same.

The CPI, which is joining hands with Ram Vilas Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party for the coming Assembly polls in Bihar, is upset because the CPM is teaming up with Laloo Prasad Yadav’s Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Congress.

The RSP and the Forward Bloc are upset with the CPM, and Bengal chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee in particular, for entering into a business deal with the Indonesia-based Salim Group. However, Bhattacharjee managed to pacify the Front partners on this score last week.

The CPM and the CPI parting ways in Bihar is likely to create animosity, especially once the poll campaigns kick off, as their candidates will be pitted against each other. The two parties’ assessment of the RJD’s governance varies greatly.

The CPI has stepped up its attack on Laloo Prasad. Party general secretary A.B. Bardhan argued that it would be better for the Left to go it alone in Bihar and lose rather than ride piggyback on the RJD.

The CPI lashed out at the Rabri Devi government, claiming that the RJD’s continuation at the helm of the state was damaging for the people of Bihar and asked the CPM to join the protest they organised in Bihar against the RJD. It also demanded Bihar governor Buta Singh’s resignation.

The CPM, on its part, did not utter a single word of criticism against the RJD. Its leaders always backed Laloo Prasad — be it on the RJD’s tainted ministers in the central government or MP Shahabuddin playing truant. At a press conference during the recent monsoon session of Parliament, CPM MPs said the critical factor is secularism.

The CPM also found no fault with Buta Singh’s conduct.

There is yet another hitch in CPM-CPI relations on Bihar. The CPM remains antagonistic towards Naxalite groups and refuses to have any truck with them in the Bihar polls, though the Marxist-Leninists won seven seats on their own in the last Assembly elections. However, the CPI has decided on an alliance with the Marxist-Leninists.

The CPM talks about the Left Front as a political entity, but Front partners believe that they live under the shadow of a bigger party that is used to setting the agenda.

The CPI’s second-rung leaders want the party leadership to distinguish themselves from the CPM in terms of policy. The decision on the Bihar elections seems to be a step in this direction.

11 killed in Naxal attack in Giridih

NDTV Correspondent

Monday, September 12, 2005 (Ranchi):

At-least 11 civilians were killed and six others injured in a Naxal attack at Bhelbadari village in Jharkhand's Giridih district, about 200 km from Ranchi.

Over 100 armed Naxalites raided the village near Bhinwaghati under Deuri police station late Sunday night and attacked the villagers, Deputy Inspector General of Police Neeraj Sinha said.

Jharkhand Home Secretary JB Tubid and Director General of Police BD Ram rushed to Bhelbadari village, which is situated in a remote interior area.

Police and security forces were taking extra precaution to pre-empt any ambush by the Naxals.

Hardly a force to reckon with



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BANGALORE: The state government ignored the Arakesh report on Veerappan's potential victims. And paid for it — twice. Now, it looks set to do the same with Naxals.

Though the Naxals are spreading their tentacles across Karnataka — they are a tangible presence in 13 districts and behind 10 killings — the Anti-Naxal Force set up six months ago, exists only on paper. It has inadequate staff, no infrastructure or even headquarters.

This statement comes straight from Anti-Naxal Force (ANF) chief, Jayaprakash V Nayak. Nayak, much worried about his nonexistent force, has sent off missives to the chief secretary and state police chief over the last three months.The Times of India procured copies of Nayak's confidential documents.

In a report on the status of ANF sent to the then chief secretary, routed through the DG&IGP on July 11 and August 16, Nayak states: "I am left with no option but to approach you through this letter to apprise you of the factual position with regard to the present status of ANF. I have chosen this option because all other options have failed to deliver goods."

Approaching the CM directly would amount to breach of protocol and cause embarrassment to all concerned. Hence, I request you to keep the CM informed about the ANF, which was constituted in May. All of us have realised that the Naxal menace is quite serious in the state..."

He adds: "On May 18, after the Naxals killed a police informant in a village near Sringeri, the police chief asked me to rush to Sringeri and monitor anti-Naxal operations. I was chief of Special Task Force (STF) at M M Hills at that time."

"Before asking me to proceed to Sringeri, the least that could have been done was to ask me whether I had enough security cover and a vehicle. Instead, I was asked to stay at Sringeri without any logistical support, exposing me to danger by the Naxals."

On May 21, Nayak sent a teleprinter message to police headquarters and intelligence wing: "I rushed to Sringeri and monitored the operations aimed at curbing Naxal menace. There is a need to constitute a force afresh. The post of STF Commander is also not renewed.

Before sorting out these matters and other issues such as command, control, preparation of charter of duties and powers, operational apparatus, infrastructural facilities, training and collection of intelligence, sending an individual officer will not serve any purpose."

In his letter to the chief secretary, he points out: "Instead of appreciating my concern for the force, DG&IGP and head of the intelligence objected to the tone and tenor of my TP message. They went to the extent of telling me that the CM was annoyed with me and thought of suspending me. I requested both of them to take me to CM, so that I could present before him the factual position. This was not done."

"The state is dithering over setting up headquarters. DG&IGP sent a letter to the home secretary to make Bangalore the base. Then the venue was changed to Karkala and Chitradurga. There is utter confusion and precious time is being wasted..." Nayak mentions. Many months have gone by, and the ANF still has no headquarters.