Saturday, June 23, 2007

Maoist leader killed by A.P. police

K. Srinivas Reddy

HYDERABAD: Two days after the Maoist threatened to step up attacks against politicians in Andhra Pradesh, the State police inflicted a stunning blow to the Maoist movement by killing its Central Committee member, Sande Rajamouli, in an alleged encounter in Anantapur district, bordering Karnataka, on Friday night.

Rajamouli, a senior cadre who was also a member of the Central Military Commission, was stated to be the brain behind the abortive ‘Alipiri attack’ on N. Chandrababu Naidu.

Incidentally, he is the second CMC member to be killed in Andhra Pradesh in recent times. Earlier, Wadkapur Chandramouli, a CMC member, was killed in Visakhapatnam Agency area this year.
May invite flak

Rajamouli’s killing in front of the railway station in Dharmavaram town of Anantapur is bound to generate criticism within the Maoist ranks in view of his top stature. The point of discussion among the Maoists could be on how a member of the Central Committee and CMC moved without proper protection into Andhra Pradesh where the Maoists have officially announced their retreat in the wake of severe and continuous police onslaught. Incidentally, both the slain CMC members, Rajamouli and Chandramouli, hail from Karimnagar district.

Maoist party secretary Muppalla Laxman Rao alias Ganapathi is also from the same district. Rajamouli’s wife Rajitha, who was the District Committee Secretary of Karimnagar, was also killed in an encounter.

Top Maoist Raja Mouli dead at encounter
Updated: 06-23-2007

HYDERABAD : Top Maoist leader Sande Raja Mouli alias Prasad was killed in an encounter with the police near Dharmavaram railway station in Anantapur district on Friday night. Mouli, 47, was a member of the CPI Maoist central committee and the central military commission. He is said to be the No.2 in the hierarchy after central committee secretary Mupalla Laxman Rao alias Ganapati.

A woman Maoist was killed in the encounter and another Maoist fled though he was injured. They were suspected to be Mouli’s protection team. The encounter took place at about 9 pm. He is said to be involved in Maoist attack on former speaker D Sripada Rao and former chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu (Alipiri blast).
. According to Anantapur superintendent of police Stephen Ravindra a police party intercepted a group of three persons near the railway tracks near Dharmavaram railway station.

When police party tried to question them, the three persons started running and opened fire. The police opened fire in retaliation. When firing from the other side stopped, the police found one person dead at the site. He was later identified as Mouli. Mr Ravindra said there were 120 cases pending against Mouli and the government had announced a Rs 16 lakhs reward for his head.

Mouli was said to be the mastermind behind the Alipiri attack on then Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu in 2003. Sources said that Tech Madhu, who was arrested for building rocket launchers, worked at the behest of Mouli. A former State committee secretary, Mouli came from Odela mandal in Karimnagar district.

The encounter will hit the Maoists who have reeling after a series of high profile leaders were killed last year. According to police, Shakamuri Appa Rao is the only surviving member of the military commission. (EOM)

Blast rips through goods carriage

Statesman News Service
KORAPUT, June 22: Naxalites blasted the engine of a goods carriage train on the Visakhapatnam-Kirandul railway route at Darliput railway station here during the wee hours today. They also set fire to documents at the railway station master’s office and planted a few other explosives.
Nobody was injured in the incident. It may be noted that naxals had destroyed the office room of the same railway station in 2004.
It was, in some ways similar to the Koraput town operation a few years ago as armed naxals had then taken over the entire town for a few hours looted the district armoury and escaped. This time they took over the railway station but did not harm anyone nor did they indulge in looting.
Mr Sankar Rao , the station master of Darliput railway station said seven armed naxalites, including two women cadres, had entered his office room around midnight and had asked him to hand over the signal light .
The entire station was captured by them. With the help of the signal light they had stopped a goods carriage train heading towards Kirandul from Visakhaptnam and asked the driver to give them the VHF walkie-talkie set . The train was then allowed to move ahead.
But, the next train which entered the station after a few minutes was not spared. The driver was asked to get down and bombs were planted in and around the train , Mr.Rao said. The bomb planted in the front rail engine exploded , causing serious damage to the engine.
The naxalites, after the successful blast turned towards the office room and asked everyone to come out of the station.
They burnt all the documents, papers and destroyed the telephone in the office before planting another bomb under the table .
They placed three banners in the station alleging that the government was hoodwinking tribals and the downtrodden in the name of development projects. They exhorted people to read the banners and raise their voice against the government.
Police personnel from CRPF and Special Operation Group (SOG) reached the railway station and engaged themselves in diffusing the bombs that had been left behind by the ultras.
The police personnel were non-committal on the type of explosive used by the ultras.
Details of the ingredients and the nature of bombs could only be known after the bomb disposal squad from Visakhapatnam reached the spot, they said.

Maoists strike in Orissa, three killed

Bhubaneswar, June 22 (PTI): Suspected Maoists killed three persons, including a contractor, and also blasted a railway engine and burnt down a potion of a police station, in separate strikes in Orissa.

"We have information about the ultras killing a contractor at Tumikoma village and two persons at Ranigolla village in Deogarh district last night," Director General of Police Amarananda Pattanayak said.

The Maoists also blasted the engine of a goods train and burnt down a part of the Padua police station in Koraput district.

About 40 armed naxalites arrived at the station and stopped two goods trains and the engine drivers' walkie-talkies were taken away, DIG of Police (South Western Range) S K Nath said.

They then triggered three blasts, including one in the engine of a train and set fire to the station master's office, he said.

Police were at the spot and combing operation was being taken up in nearby forests.

Darliput station is barely 1.5 km from the Andhra Pradesh border.

OSAP jawan held with stolen rifle

Saturday June 23 2007 12:57 IST

ROURKELA: The OSAP personnel, Mahatma Kujur, who was arrested with a stolen AK-47 rifle on Thursday was forwarded to court by Talsara police on Friday.

Talsara police was tipped off that Kujur was in possession of an Ak-47 rifle and was intending to sell it.

It is learnt that the rifle was looted from another jawan Bikram Kujur on February 26 last. A case had been registered.

Cop held with AK-47

ROURKELA, June 22: Sundergarh police arrested one man in uniform who had disappeared with an AK-47 rifle from the unit. Mr Mahatma Kujur, a resident of Talsara village in Sundergarh district, joined the third battalion in Koraput in 2000. During his posting, Mr Kujur was part of anti-Naxalite operations. While on a combing action with the CRPF, the patrol party of Mr Mr Kujur was ambushed by Maoists in the deep jungles of Koraput in February. The attack was so intensive that the patrol party had to retreat and the ultras managed to escape with weapons.
Mr Kujur, who managed to escape with his AK-47, after the attack, did not report to his unit. A manhunt was launched to trace him. In the meantime, Mr Kujur started to make contacts in Rajgangpur, Rourkela, Jharsuguda, Sundergarh and some other areas to dispose of the weapon.
Sundergarh police was already on his trail and spread its dragnet to catch him. A policeman pretending to be a potential buyer established contacts with Mr Kujur who agreed to sell the weapon for Rs 1 lakh

Andhra: Two Naxals killed in encounter

Saturday June 23 2007 15:37 IST

WARANGAL: Two Naxalites belonging to CPI (ML) Prathighatana were killed in an exchange of fire with the police in the district on Friday.

The incident took place at Musukullagudem in Palakurthy Mandal.

According to Deputy Superintendent of Police, Jangaon, V Sailu, a special police team spotted a group of persons near Musukullagudem.

When asked for their identity, they opened fire on the police. The police retaliated and fired in self-defence. The exchange of fire lasted for about 15 minutes.

The police found two dead bodies at the site.

Based on the letter pads found at the scene, the deceased were identified as the Naxalites of Prathighatana group. One of them was identified as M Srinu alias Bhaskaranna alias Ganesh aged around 30 years. He was the commander of Prathighatana’s Mahabubabad area dalam, and a native of Muththaram in Palakurthy Mandal.

The other was aged around 25 years. The police seized two weapons - a carbine and a pistol from the scene.

For the last one week, the quarry owners, contractors and traders in Palakurthy area had been receiving threats from the Prathighatana Naxalites for funds.

Following complaints from the victims, the police intensified patrolling to nab the Naxalites.

Jharkhand banks to take on Naxals



RANCHI: Banks in Jharkhand are targeting Naxal-hit districts to improve their credit deposit ratio (CDR). As many as 17 banks in the state have lower CDR than the state average. These banks have been advised by the Jharkhand State-Level Bankers’ Committee (JSLBC) to take steps to improve the situation. The overall CDR of the state stood at 40.83% in March this year.

Banks are facing closure in Naxal-hit areas of the state. For instance, Bank of India is reported to have closed its Masaria branch in Gumla district. A few other banks could soon follow suit.

JSLBC chief manager RN Singh told ET districts such as Lohardagga, Simdega and Latehar are the worst-hit. Steps are being taken to improve CDR of banks in these districts.

Banks in the state achieved 47.59% of their Annual Credit Plan (ACP) target for 2006-07 in Lohardagga district, which is the least among all. Total annual credit in Lohardagga amounted to a mere Rs 22 crore. Simdega registered an ACP of Rs 30.72 crore and Latehar Rs 34.10 crore, as in March 2007. About 80% of the 550 branches of various banks in rural areas of the state are located in Naxalism-affected areas.

“Banks in Naxal-hit areas are unable to tap the market because of security reasons. As many as 18 of the 22 districts in the state are affected by Naxalism. Banks in the state have taken it up as a challenge and are devising strategies to increase advances in Naxal-hit areas,” Mr Singh said.

Banks have decided to enhance credit flow to weaker sections of the society living in Naxal-hit districts. The majority of private banks operating in the state do not extend credit facilities to such sections. “This needs attention as there is a vast scope to improve financing to the weaker sections,” Mr Singh said.

JSLBC has also advised banks to revise the ACP target in general, and agriculture target in particular, to achieve 45% credit deposit ratio and 18% agriculture credit by the end of the current financial year.

“There’s a need to explore the untapped growth potential in agriculture sector in Jharkhand. The state is endowed with fertile soil, abundant water, favourable climate and low-cost labour.

Yet, only 25% of the geographical area and 47% of the cultivable area is being cropped. Thus, 53% of the cultivable land still remains to be tapped,” Mr Singh said.

He said JSLBC had decided to organise a three-day symposium in partnership with Nabard on farm credit for inclusive growth to achieve a higher sustainable growth rate in agriculture by exploring potential and untapped areas of the state.

Central alert on Naxal onslaught

23 Jun, 2007 l 0434 hrs ISTlVishwa Mohan/TIMES NEWS NETWORK

NEW DELHI: With Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and other development projects being on Maoists’ hit-list across the country, the Centre has warned states to gear up their machinery to check the Red ultras’ onslaught during their proposed two-day “economic blockade” from June 26.

The Union home ministry has sent special instructions to states, including Haryana and Punjab, asking them for better coordination among the police, civil supplies department, state electricity board, railways and Border Road Organisation (BRO) as the security agencies fear major naxal attacks on infrastructure projects during the proposed blockade.

Officials here believe that the blockade has been planned by the CPI (Maoists) to oppose the formation of SEZs. Though the security agencies have so far not come across any statement of the Red ultras’ Central Committee announcing the blockade, a number of posters have been seized from the border areas of Jharkhand, Orissa, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal indicating the naxals’ plan not only in these states but also in Haryana and Punjab where their presence is not significant.

Referring to the Maoists’ recent ninth congress, held in the forests bordering Jharkhand and Orissa, a senior home ministry official said the naxals had tried to justify their opposition to SEZs terming the very concept of economic zone as a modern version of the old ‘zamindari’ system. The minutes of the meeting are available with the home ministry. They show the Maoists’ plan to arm locals where SEZs are proposed. They have also planned and subsequently worked on it to transform their current ‘guerilla’ units into ‘mobile wings’ which can strike in various parts of the country and then disappear. These units had, in fact, also looked for new recruits among debt-ridden farmers in Maharashtra and Punjab during the last three months.

“Maoists have already been trying to focus on people who have either lost their land or are on the verge of losing it to SEZs and other developmental projects. Since it is an emotive issue, people who lost their land would certainly listen to the Red ultras in these areas,” said the official.

Taking note of the Maoists’ strategy — which may be experimented by them as a ‘test drive’ during their proposed "economic blockade" — the official said that special attention would be paid to areas where a number of development projects were being taken up by both private and public sector companies as the ultras had identified them as their "targets" during their ninth congress.

According to the Maoists’ final report, the projects, which the naxals identified as on their hit-list, also included the bauxite mining project of the Jindals in Visakhapatnam, the Polavaram irrigation project, steel plants proposed by Tatas, Essar and Jindals in Chhattisgarh, the Centre’s proposed railway line in the Rajhara-Raighat-Jagdalpur sector, Posco’s steel plants (under construction) in Orissa, power plants proposed by Reliance in Uttar Pradesh and the Kosi irrigation project in northern Bihar.

NAGPUR: Naxal leaders regrouping in city?

22 Jun, 2007 l 0439 hrs ISTlTIMES NEWS NETWORK

NAGPUR: After some turbulence caused by the arrest of four naxals near Deekshabhoomi on May 8, Maoistleaders and front organisations in the region are reportedly re-grouping in Nagpur. Sources told TOI that after Nagpur police arrested Arun Ferriera, Mahesh alias Murli alias Ashok Satya Reddy, Dhanendra Burle and Naresh Bansod, there were some waves of protest.

However, only Ferriera’s arrest created a significant impact. “Front organisations and sympathisers projected Ferriera as an activist and not a Maoist. Ferriera’s Mumbai-based wife Jennifer was instrumental in this and she even went to national media to prove his reported innocence,’’ said the source.

Meanwhile, a naxal-backed ‘fact-finding committee’ was also formed in yet another effort to prove the ‘innocence’ of Ferriera and others. Now, Nagpur police have reportedly learnt that top leaders of Maoists, their sympathisers and other front organisations have started regrouping in Nagpur. “Their so-called fact-finding committee has become active in recent times. They are holding meetings, preparing documents and gathering support to keep the issue on the boil. They want to exonerate Ferriera at all costs,’’ said the source.

Another issue cropping up often in the meetings is the ‘failure’ of the Nagpur police to find clinching evidence in the narco test of Ferriera and Murli. “This so-called failure of Nagpur police is being highlighted repeatedly in the meetings reportedly to form a negative sentiment,’’ the source added.

Meanwhile, there was reportedly a large presence of naxal sympathisers at the hearing of the four arrested naxals here on Thursday. “They were also trying to contact the media and may have intended to influence them,’’ the source said.

ORISSA: Naxal attacks rocks the state

Saturday June 23 2007 00:00 IST

BHUBANESWAR: Naxal violence rocked the State as an army of Maoists laid siege to a bordering town in Koraput district late on Thursday and blasted off a goods train engine before setting on fire office of the local railway station master.

Several hundred kilometres away in the northern district of Deograh, a separate group of extremists gunned down three persons including a contractor and a police informer.

The spate of incidents, occurring a few hours before Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik embarked on a tour to Rayagada on Friday, took the State Police by complete surprise while Director General of Police Amarananda Pattanayak closeted himself in a marathon meeting through the day.

In Koraput, the Naxals targeted Darliput, a small town barely two km from Andhra Pradesh border, to pull off a meticulously planned operation.

Over 40 heavily armed ultras descended at the local railway station at around 1 am. They are reported to have taken control of the railway station by capturing its station master.

They stopped a goods train and snatched walkie-talkie from its staff. Then a second train was forcibly halted and the ultras blasted off its engine using landmines, DIG South Western Range SK Nath said.

Before moving out, they set on flames the office of the station master. The incident triggered a wave of panic in the area. Security forces have rushed to the spot.

In Deogarh, the ultras struck in two adjoining villages on Thursday night. They abducted two residents of Ranigola village Bhubaneswar Nayak and Harischandra Nayak and their dead bodies were recovered in the morning.

Another person Mahi Pradhan, stated to be a contractor of Telikusum village, was also killed in a similar fashion by the ultras.

It's after a long gap that ultras have resurfaced in Deogarh. Last year, a spate of police had virtually driven them away from their territories.

Maoists on a killing spree in Orissa and Jharkhand

Ranchi, Jun 22: The Maoists went on a rampage in Orissa and Jharkhand, killing five people, including two policemen, blasting a goods train engine and torching the Station Master's office during the past 24 hours.

Police said the CPI(Maoist) ultras ambushed a police vehicle, killing two policemen, including an ASI, and getting their arrested accomplice released in Jharkhand's Gumla district bordering Chattisgarh last night.

The incident took place under Raideeh police station, about 60 km from Dumka headquarters near Chattisgarh.

Superintendent of Police J D H Guddia told UNI here over phone from Gumla that some ultras hiding near Karmaghat on NH 47 attacked the police team, which was bringing one suspected naxal in the police van from Chainpur to Raideeh.

The ultras pumped bullets indiscriminatly, killing ASI Christopher Minz and constable Ramuday Mahto on the spot.

The police retaliation proved too feeble before the ultras' organised attack and the latter managed to escape unhurt after successfully getting their accomplice released.

In Orissa, armed Maoists hacked to death three people and injured as many at Ranigola village, about 60 km from Deogarh, late last night.

Nearly ten armed Maoists raided the village in the night, broke the doors of three houses, dragged the villagers on the street and hacked them to death.

All the injured had been shifted to Deogarh Hospital.

In another incident in the state today, the Maoists blasted an engine of a goods train at Daliput, ransacked the Station Master's office and later set it ablaze.

Police said the Maoists stopped the goods train and the asked the driver to get down from the train.

They then snatched away the VHP set and a mobile from the driver and planted a bomb in the engine room.

The bomb later exploded causing extensive damage to the engine.

The Maoists then went to the Station Master's room, ransacked it, torched the office and fled from the scene.

Senior Police officials had rushed to the sites and launched combing operation in the area after the incident.

--- UNI

Friday, June 22, 2007

Maoists blow up goods train engine in Orissa

Bhubaneswar, June 22: Armed Maoist rebels blew up the engine of a goods train in Orissa's Koraput district early Friday and escaped into the nearby forests.

The train was waiting for a green signal before the Darliput station at 12.30 a.m. when the explosion occurred, Abhimanyu Pradhan, an official of the Paduan police station, told IANS.

Over 30 rebels overpowered the driver of the goods train near Darliput village, around 600 km from here, and then triggered the blast, he said.

The train was travelling from Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh to Kirandul in neighbouring Chhattisgarh.

The Maoists are also suspected to have left unexploded bombs in the second engine attached to the train, Pradhan said.

State police chief Amarananda Patnaik said senior police officials accompanied by a bomb squad were at the site for investigations.

--- IANS

Maoists call for blockade

K. Srinivas Reddy

Intelligence fears attacks in 4 States

Hyderabad: Security forces have been put on high alert in several States following a two-day economic blockade announced by the CPI (Maoist) from June 26.

Intelligence agencies suspect that Maoist guerrillas, numbering more than 20,000, could target industries and the Railways in a bid to bring mining activity in Orissa, Chhattisgarh, Bihar and Jharkhand to a standstill.

The blockade seems inspired by the several “chakka jams” organised by the Maoist party in Nepal, which wrecked the economy of the Himalayan kingdom. The latest move comes in the backdrop of a recent decision of the CPI (Maoist) Polit Bureau to step up attacks to destroy infrastructure.

Protest against SEZs

The blockade was planned to oppose the formation of special economic zones (SEZs) and the policies of Central and State governments, “which are playing into the hands of multi-national companies,” a Maoist statement issued in Orissa two days ago said.

Interestingly, the Central Committee of the party has not issued a statement announcing the blockade; the statements were issued by the State committees. “We have noticed many posters announcing the blockade on the borders of Jharkhand with Orissa and West Bengal. We suspect that the naxals could indulge in violence because they have been getting hit in Jharkhand and Bihar,” Gauri Shankar Rath, Additional Director-General of Police, Jharkhand, told The Hindu over phone .

In Chhattisgarh, the authorities are busy mobilising troops in the strife-torn forest areas of Bastar. “We are concentrating on the Dantewada, Bijapur, Narayanpur and Jagdalpur districts, which have a strong presence of Maoists,” Giridhari Nayak, Inspector-General of Police, overseeing the anti-extremist operations, told The Hindu from Raipur.

Mining operations hit

That the latest strategy of the Maoists is to target the economic infrastructure of the country is clear. When they blasted high-tension power lines in Bastar on May 31 and June 2, six districts went without power for the next 11 days affecting mining operations and the movement of ore from Bailadilla mines. The National Mineral Development Corporation is reported to have incurred a loss of Rs. 9 crore a day.

Days after the ‘Bastar blackout,’ the Maoists blew up the control station of a mini-hydel power generation unit at Sileru in the Donkarai area of East Godavari.

Later, they blew up high-tension transmission lines too.

A similar blockade in June 2006 in Chhattisgarh had a devastating impact. With the National Highway 16, which passes through Bastar being blocked, the Dantewada, Kanket and Surguja districts remained cut off.

Chhattisgarh Maoists Call For Economic Blockade, Police On Alert
Friday 22nd of June 2007 Maoists in Chhattisgarh have called for a two-day economic blockade in the state's insurgency-hit Bastar region next week and police forces have been put on high alert to foil the rebels' plans.

Fearing large-scale violence and losses to iron ore mining in the southern region during the blockade June 26-27, security personnel have been deployed at several strategic points.

'Police and paramilitary troopers have been put on high alert in the Bastar region with extra policemen deployed at railway tracks, highways, government establishments and mining facilities to defuse the economic blockade called by Maoists,' Sant Kumar Paswan, Chhattisgarh's acting director general of police, told IANS.

The Dandkaranya Special Zonal Committee, a frontal unit of the banned outfit Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist), sent press releases to regional daily newspapers earlier this week, saying they would call for an economic blockade June 26-27 in Bastar.

The blockade, according to the Maoists, is to send across the message that the resources of the region belong to the locals of the area and is instead being exploited by private firms.

The Bastar region, spread across 40,000 sq km, is rich in minerals and forest resources. It is home to several private companies, including Essar Steel Ltd, and India's largest public sector iron ore producer and exporter National Mineral Development Corporation Ltd (NMDC).

Maoists have a strong presence in the interior pockets of the Bastar region, including Bastar, Dantewada, Bijapur, Narayanpur and Kanker districts for over three decades.

NMDC has major mining facilities at Dantewada's Bailadila iron ore deposits.

Earlier this week, Maoists had carried out blasts on railway tracks and set on fire a conveyor belt of the NMDC at Bailadila, causing losses of millions of rupees.

The rebels have also opposed the formation of special economic zones (SEZs) in various parts of the country.

What Did the Maoist Leader Discuss With the Royal Palace?

Written by Diapayan Mazumdar
Thursday, 21 June 2007
The unthinkable has happened, according to a Nepal news organization which reported on May 27, 2007 that Prachanda, Chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) had a forty five minute talk on telephone with the personal/private Secretary of King Gyanendra, Pashupati Bhakta Maharjan.

According to the website, it was Prachanda who had taken the initiative to speak to the King's private secretary and not the other way about. What is more, when Prachanda asked Maharjan what the King thought about the Maoists, Maharjan is reported to have said that the King viewed the ex-rebels' political overtures as "normal.".

If true, this event might prove to be a watershed in Nepal's current political ambience which is marked by uncertainties, unrest and uncontrolled agitations by any number of organizations on various issues, with the administration looking helplessly on as the country is slipping helplessly towards anarchical conditions.

The Maoists contacting the King was considered absolutely impossible .Prachanda and his number two Baburam Bhattarai had never mentioned the King with the prefix His Majesty but always as "Gyanendra" or even less respectable names all through their ten-year long violent agitation against monarchy which has resulted in the death of 13,000 people of which 9000 are said to be Maoist "combatants".

Peace was restored in April 2006 largely with the involvement of India in the negotiations between the political parties and the Maoists with parleys held at undisclosed – but fairly well known – venues in and around New Delhi with Prachanda and Bhattarai ferried by aircraft from their hideouts in Nepal. The King had to restore the dissolved Pratinidhi Sabha, the lower House of the Nepalese Parliament, on April 24, 2006 which was considered a day of victory for the people's agitation ("Jana Andolan").

On the other hand, Mr.Girija Prasad Koirala, the 84-years old Nepali Congress president who has been steering Nepal back to the path of Parliamentary Democracy along with the mainstream political parties, is facing criticisms not only from his other friends in political parties but also from within the ranks of his own party.

An apparently simple matter like re-unification of the faction of the Nepali Congress called the Nepali Congress (Democratic) which had walked out of the parent body in 2002 could not be achieved although this is crucial for the votaries of parliamentary democracy on eve of the general elections for the Constituent Assembly, likely to be held by mid-November this year.

Although the Prime Minister has kept all his near-relatives out of the new Government that was formed on April 1, 2007, allegations and innuendos are hurled against him for favouring his daughter and nephews on party matters.

The "dhotiwalas", that is the people living in the southern plains of Nepal, somewhat contemptuously called the Madhesis (from Madhyadesh in Sanskrit) have also done the unthinkable – the docile people have now taken to guns in order to secure for themselves a place in the sun, as it were.

Apart from other demands, they want an autonomous State within the framework of a unified Nepal . (These people are mistakenly called people of Indian origin, creating an impression that they have come from India to Nepal. Actually their forefathers were living there since time immemorial and they became citizens of Nepal only after King Prithvinarayan Shah, who "Unified" Nepal in 1969 and thereafter had conquered these territories from the Mughals and partly from the British in the 18 th and 19th centuries. In fact the Pahadis, largely Brahmins and Kshatriyas could be called people of Indian origin because they had gone to today's Nepal from Rajputana and other areas of India in the 16 th and the 17the centuries).

Along with them, the Janajatis, the Tribals, have unified and are demanding separate States within the federation of Nepal from various tribal groups. The election process is in doldrums because delimitations of constituencies are yet to begin, and electoral rolls revised and updated.

The role of India has once again become important and hordes of Nepali leaders coming to New Delhi for "treatment" at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences call on Indian leaders frequently, sometimes with due announcements and sometimes not so. However, the United States and Britain in particular, and the United Nations through its various agencies, too are involved in Nepal for a plethora of purposes, politics not excluded.

While all these turmoil are an everyday occurrence in Nepal, and India directly or indirectly, is involved in Nepal in myriad ways, our political leadership is blissfully ignorant about the happenings in our immediately neighborhood and is hardly paying any attention to the possible threat to our internal and external security, ostrich-like.

About the Author:


Inter-State meet on Maoist menace

Friday June 22 2007 12:40 IST
VISAKHAPATNAM: Top police officials of Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Orissa and Madhya Pradesh held a meeting here on Thursday to take stock of the spurt in Maoist activities.

State DGP MA Basith, who presided over the meeting, is learnt to have told the officers that the Andhra Pradesh Government wanted to put down the violent activities of Maoists with full force.

Marriage of Maoist leader's son stirs austerity debate

From our ANI Correspondent

Karma Village (Gaya, Bihar), June 22: The marriage of the son of Vijay Kumar Arya, a Maoist leader from Karma village in Bihar's Gaya District, has initiated a heated debate in the area.

Earlier, the Arya family claimed that they would follow the Janvaadi rituals (austerity) for this wedding as against the Brahmanvaadi (women's Sangeet, religious formalities).

"I am adopting this kind of simple marriage as a form to oppose the Tilak and dowry system, Brahmanvaadi marriages and Karamkand," said Pankaj Arya, the groom.

However, according to certain reports, the wedding had all the extravaganza of typical Brahmanvaadi rituals.

The event has provided opponents of Vijay Kumar Arya with an opportunity to criticise him for deviating from the ideals of Communism.

Niranjan Kumar, the District Secretary of the Bharatiya Communist Party, said having discussions was pointless.

He felt that if Arya claimed to be a revolutionary, then he ought to have opted for an austere lifestyle.

"The question is not about the Maoist principles. Maoist principles never tell how a marriage should take place. The question is how to conduct a marriage in a simple way, not like the marriages now days which consist of so much pomp and show and are expensive. Any revolutionary and Communist should avoid it," Kumar said. Niranjan feels that this whole matter can hurt Arya's followers.


2 Naxals killed in encounter in Andhra

Zee News, India - 3 hours ago
... police party reached the spot, police said. Police opened fire after the Naxals hurled bomb on the officials in which two Naxalites were killed, they said.


Maoists strike in Orissa, three killed

Bhubaneswar, June 22 (PTI): Suspected Maoists killed three persons, including a contractor, and also blasted a railway engine and burnt down a potion of a police station, in separate strikes in Orissa.

"We have information about the ultras killing a contractor at Tumikoma village and two persons at Ranigolla village in Deogarh district last night," Director General of Police Amarananda Pattanayak said.

The Maoists also blasted the engine of a goods train and burnt down a part of the Padua police station in Koraput district.

About 40 armed naxalites arrived at the station and stopped two goods trains and the engine drivers' walkie-talkies were taken away, DIG of Police (South Western Range) S K Nath said.

They then triggered three blasts, including one in the engine of a train and set fire to the station master's office, he said.

Police were at the spot and combing operation was being taken up in nearby forests.

Darliput station is barely 1.5 km from the Andhra Pradesh border.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Home Ministry cautions Chhattisgarh government over attacks on police

New Delhi, June 21: Anguished over frequent naxal attacks on security personnel in Chhattisgarh, the Union Home Ministry has cautioned the state government that it should take steps to ensure that the police did not get exposed to unnecessary risks.

The MHA has advised the State to take all possible precautions to ensure that the police did not get exposed to unnecessary risks, particularly day-time operations, sources in the Ministry on Wednesday said.

The Centre's advise was conveyed to the State Government during the recent visit of the Additional Secretary (Naxal Management) in the Union Home Ministry Vinay Kumar.

In the latest incident on May 28, Maoists laid booby traps in Kudur village, 435 km from Raipur, killing an Assistant Sub Inspector, a Head Constable and seven constables of Mardapal police station in Bastar district.

In March, 50 security personnel were killed and over a dozen others injured when naxalites opened indiscriminate fire and hurled grenades and petrol bombs at a police base camp in Bijapur district of the state.

Taking serious note of the sudden spurt in naxal attacks, the State Government has set up anti-naxal cells in six more districts. Thus, out of 20 districts, such cells are in operation in 16 districts now.

With the militants using landmines, the MHA has given permission to the State Government to construct concrete roads so that laying of mines became difficult.

Besides discussing the response of the state police in dealing with the naxal problem, the central team reviewed the pace of development and employment generating activities to wean away misguided youth, they added.

Naxals threaten sarpanch’s husband

Thursday, 21 June 2007

Guntur, June 21: Two Communist Party of India (Maoist) naxalites allegedly threatened husband of Joolakallu Gram Panchayat Sarpanch in Piduguralla mandal of Guntur and five others with dire consequences if they did not mend their ways.

The two Maoists alleged that he had swindled Rs.3 lakh in a road contract and warned another five surrendered naxalites for their alleged links with the police.


Objectives of Naxalism and countering their movement

Naxalism in India came into existence about 40 years ago with the objec-tive of capturing the power of the state with the might of its armed strength or by the power that grows out of the barrel of the gun. Their strategy is to capture territories as much as possible and to establish their rule over the areas captured by them with the support of their armed guerilla.

As could be seen in the present situation, the Naxalites concentrate their dominance where the state power is weak and so their natural choice of target is the tribal areas were the state administration is poor and the areas neglected by the state. Their target is to capture the tribal belt in the country and convert it into liberated zone and develop their guerilla squads into regular army to defend their rule in the zones liberated by them.

After its birth in India the Naxalites have grown from strength to strength and with their anti-national activities occurring almost every day it seems to be achieving its objective of establishing their rule in the tribal belt of the country. Once the liberated zone comes into existence with their regular army to defend it, the nation may face a civil war situation like the one face by Sri Lanka with the L TTE. If such a situation arises, it could result in the division of the people of our nation with one group supporting the present democratic government and the other portion supporting the liberation of the tribal zones under the banner of Naxalism.

The Naxalites consider the state power as a weapon in the hands of the rich and the ruling classes which are against their movement. So their prime target is to destroy the state power in all its forms and create a new one of their choice and act merrily in the domain they have established for themselves. As the state power is based on the might of its armed forces their sole aim is to paralyze the police and the paramilitary forces.

The second target is the people's representative of the state assembly and the parliament. They attack and kill democratically elected leaders and also the common people to create fear and panic among the public so that it remain docile to their rule. In order to let the people remain cut off from the police and the administration from fear of being brought to justice, they involve maximum people in committing heinous crimes like murder and rape.

The biggest threat that poses the nation's democracy and rule of law today is Naxalism. Their naked dictatorship does not have any concern for the public opinion or their well-being. Coteries of ideological fanatics are dictating the people and it is abject slavery for the people under the Naxalite rule. With the tribal living below poverty line (BPL), the added rule of Naxalites is a cause of more miseries as the people have to go on leaving their home and hearth off and on. So the fight against Naxalism is a fight for defending the democracy of the nation and the freedom of the people already under their rule. It has nothing to do with socio-economic problems as some people believe. Naxalism thrives in areas which are socially and economically backward and where state government fails to enforce its rule of law and defend the people from the clutch of the Naxalities. It is a guarantee for the Naxalities that such areas remain perpetually backward and permanently cut off from the state power.

The Naxalites believe that their war is against dictatorship fighting for democracy which has led to the loss of many precious innocent lives including the police and para military forces. The Nagaland Police has its share of losing the life of gallant jawans in the fight against Naxalism. Unless the states and the centre stage a joint decisive war with Naxalism to defend our democratic rule at the earliest there is going to be more bloodshed and destruction in the country. /n the present situation of our fight, the Naxalites always have the initiative in their hands and so they are always in the offensive thereby causing more harm and damage to the state governments.

The history of Naxalite leaders reveals that they are past masters of manipulating and exploiting the media, legislature, administration and even judiciary. As a result, the government always appeared as a culprit for their stern action against the Naxalites before the public, judiciary and the media, whereas the Naxalites indulging in indiscriminate killing of the people get away under the cover of justice and human rights. In fact, the human rights groups see the state police and paramilitary forces as human rights abusers and keep silent on the killing spree of the Naxalites.

A government which is at the receiving end of its own organs must naturally be in a defensive position. So, before fighting the Naxals in the tribal forests, it is essential to identify, isolate and properly treat those elements, in the metropolitan cities including New Delhi, who are managing or manipulating the legislature, administration, judiciary and the media to create obstacles for the forces fighting against Naxalism. These highly intellectual elements are not mere sympathizers and supporters of the Naxalite movement as the government thinks but they themselves are the dangerously ambitious Naxalite leaders.

To counter Naxalism and wipe it out, the government should shed its defensive postures and resort to an all out offensive war. It is not possible without exposing and isolating the Naxalite intellectual leaders masquerading as media men, and human rights/social activists and without taking the judiciary and the media into confidence. To win war is to fight like war with weapons and for that matter with superior weapons. It is essential to motivate the people to support such a war.

It is ridiculous to leave the mass of unarmed tribals to fight the armed Naxalites without weapons in the name of Salva Judum or any other name. Non-violence could be an effective weapon to fight against a civilized and democratically elected government, but it could prove farcical and suicidal in dealing with the killing Naxalite gangs.

Since the enemy at this stage is invisible to the state but visible to the public in general, this war is to be fought with the public participation. Salva Judum could succeed only if a good number of its selected member are fully armed and if they could take initiative in searching out Naxalities from their hide outs and wiping them out ruthlessly with the support of state police and paramilitary forces. However, this should be a movement of all infested states of the Naxalite at a time so that Naxalites don't get away from one state to the other as is the case now when they are under attack.

Iherie Ndang, Chhattisgarh.

Maoists' Pasupati-Tirupati corridor: A threat

Posted at Thursday, 21 June 2007 18:06 IST
Bhubaneswar, June 21: Is the Maoist plan to have a corridor linking Nepal, the northern states and the southern region through Orissa on the verge of success? Experts believe it is.

The CPI (Maoist) cadres, Left Wing Extremists (LWE) in government parlance, have penetrated into several western and northern Orissa districts over the last few years giving the administration sleepless nights.

While naxal presence in the southern districts bordering Andhra Pradesh has been acknowledged since long, the Ultras are known to have penetrated deep into Orissa from Jharkhand in their effort to establish what is now being described as the Pasupati to Tirupati corridor.

Maoists, many of them local tribals being lured by the ultras into their fold, are known to get into frequent skirmishes with the police and the CRPF personnel in Sundargarh, Deogarh and Sambalpur districts in western Orissa.

Having entered the jungles of Sambalpur, they now had to cross the Mahanadi river to reach the other side where the Boudh and Kandhamal districts lay adjoining Rayagada.

Once this gap is bridged, the link the ultras are seeking to establish between the north and south will be established, a former senior police officer said, adding infact, they are only a step away.

Despite the government efforts to modernise the police and provide them with new arms, the maoists appear to be getting entrenched, he said.

Bihar seeks more funds to fight Naxals

Sanjay Singh
Thursday, June 21, 2007 12:40 IST

PATNA: Perturbed by the growing Naxal violence in the state, the Bihar government has decided to pressurise the centre for a special assistance in fighting ultra left extremists. In April this year, the state government in its meeting with the top brass of Union Home ministry had sought financial assistance of Rs1906 crore from the centre to check Naxal menace.

Bihar’s principal Secretary (Home) Afzal Amanullah said that the money was to be spent on construction of rural roads ( Rs 800 crore), modernisation of Police ( Rs 400 crore) and on other development schemes like building schools, hospitals and creation of other infrastructure in naxal affected areas ( Rs 706 crore). The state government had then submitted a comprehensive report about its 7 point strategy to counter Naxalism.

It had also planned to strengthen and activate the police force, develop quick intelligence gathering mechanism, settle land disputes, dispose public grievances quickly and also activate political activities in the areas affected by Naxalism.

Read latest news at DNA
Naxal activities are however on the rise and the state government is not in a position to launch a counter offensive against them for want of resources. The government had therefore decided to take up the matter once again with the centre. Amanullah said that the state’s fresh demand of special package would go up by Rs 50 crore.

The ultra left extremists, at present functioning under an outfit called MCCI (Maoists communist Centre of India), have launched a fresh offensive and as usual, their favourite target is the Police and its weaponry. The MCCI has looted 27 weapons from the police including five from the Railway Protection Force (RPF) in the last six months.

Just a day earlier, the MCCI activists took the state administration by surprise by attacking a police escort party in Bagh Express in between Chhapra and Hajipur. The naxals not only killed two policemen but also injured another three before escaping with sophisticated weapons.

Nod for Chhattisgarh intelligence revamp

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: In a move aimed at bolstering operations against Maoists in Chhattisgarh, the Home Ministry has approved an intelligence revamp plan that would cost Rs. 4.6 crore.

The decision comes a month after a landmine explosion that blew up nine policemen in Bastar. Union Home Secretary Madhukar Gupta wrote to the State last month, stressing the need to tighten the intelligence-gathering machinery.


Official sources said the revamp plan would take a few months for implementation.

Jharkhand has also submitted a plan to revamp the intelligence apparatus, but the Home Ministry made some observations and asked the State to incorporate them in the plan.

It is learnt that Jharkhand would soon re-submit the plan.

A high-level Ministry team, led by the Additional Secretary (Anti-Naxal Desk) had visited Raipur and Ranchi and reviewed the security measures.

Cops gear up for 'new-age' crimes

20 Jun, 2007 l 0257 hrs ISTlTIMES NEWS NETWORK

NAGPUR: With crores of rupees being invested in Nagpur by Mumbai real estate developers, malls, multiplexes and five star hotels being set up here and land prices escalating, the police department is gearing up for new-age crimes like economic offences, cyber crime and even the threat from the mafiosi.

Police commissioner Satyapal Singh, who took charge on Monday, said he was prepared to face the challenges of a "growing city." "We will ensure that businessmen find it a safe city." Though Nagpur unlike Mumbai does not have a history of organised crime syndicates, the fact that it is emerging as a metropolis of the future has kept the cops on their toes.

Singh has assured that the city would be safe for corporate investments and business boom, which will catapult Nagpur to international stature. "We will devote our entire strength and focus on controlling property offences," he said.

Asked whether he was prepared to tackle the underworld in case the latter set its eyes on Nagpur, Singh, who has earlier broken the back of underworld gangs in Mumbai, replied: "We will tackle any emergency situation as and when it arises. My job is not just to protect local residents, but also make outsiders visiting the city feel safe." Singh has also sought help from public in maintaining law and order.

When asked about the lawlessness, wherein police personnel have been attacked, Singh said: "Attack on a cop is attack on a system, the government and its machinery. We will not tolerate it." A researcher on the Naxalite problem and having formerly served in the naxal affected area of Gadchiroli, Singh said he aimed to tackle the growing activities of the Maoists in the city.

"The issue needs a multidimensional approach to curb the menace. Naxalism is a complex issue and more than action, we need to address the socio-economic, political and law and order problems in the society," he said.

"Addressing the problem in the city would serve no purpose until the country is freed from its menace at different levels. Only then can we think of uprooting naxalism," he stated, adding there will be better coordination between the police and the anti-naxal force.

Singh stated that his primary concern was to ensure security to life and property in Nagpur city. He has beefed up security at all vital installations, including RSS headquarters.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Maoist killed 2 GRP personnel ,weapons looted on a running train

GRP men killed, weapons looted on running train

Posted at Wednesday, 20 June 2007 10:06 IST
Patna, June 20: Two GRP personnel were killed and as many injured and their service weapons looted by suspected Maoist ultras on a running train in Bihar's Saran district, officials said.

The attackers, numbering about 25, boarded a general compartment of 3020 down Kathgodam-Howrah Express at Dighwara station and as it gathered speed they beat up a havildar and threw him out of the running train leading to his death, IG (operations) S.K. Bharadwaj told reporters.

The heavily armed assailants then shot dead a jawan and inflicted stab injuries on two other members of the GRP escort before disembarking with their four rifles and ammunition near Bada Gopal station.

Bharadwaj did not rule out the possibility of involvement of proscribed CPI (Maoist) in the attack. ''We are trying to ascertain the identity of the perpetrators who might have been naxalites or dacoits.'' However, Divisional Railway Manager of Sonepur Pramod Kumar, who has reached the spot, said the incident was the handiwork of dacoits who killed the GRP personnel for resisting them and, as a result, the passengers were safe.

One of the injured jawans has been taken to Patna Medical College Hospital, while the other was being treated at a hospital at Sonepur.

The place of occurrence falls in the Chapra parliamentary constituency of Railway Minister Lalu Prasad.

New Delhi - Two policemen were killed and two injured when suspected Maoists attacked a security team on a train in India's eastern state of Bihar, news agencies reported Wednesday. At least 20 members of the banned Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-M) Tuesday night attacked the Government Railway Police (GRP) on a train in the Saran district, 80 kilometres north of state capital Patna, the IANS news agency reported.

"The two GRP personnel were killed when they countered the Maoists' bid to loot arms," an unnamed police official was quoted by the IANS as saying.

According to the PTI news agency, the militants first beat a policeman and threw him out of the running train leading to his death. They later shot dead another policeman.

Police added that two other policemen were injured in the attack but no passenger was harmed.

The Maoists currently have a presence in 13 of India's 28 states and seven federally-administered territories. They reject parliamentary democracy and aim to capture political power through an armed struggle based on guerrilla warfare.

In 2006 an estimated 749 people, including rebels, security personnel and civilians, were killed in Maoist-related violence, while there were more than 250 killed in the first four months of 2007.

Copyright © 2007 Respective Author

» Print this article

Left Front completes 30 years battling crisis of identity

By Sujoy Dhar (Staff Writer, © IANS)
Email Print Download PDF Comments (0)
By Sujoy Dhar. West Bengal, India, 04:32 PM IST

West Bengal's Communist government completes a remarkable 30 long years in office with a dramatic ideological U-turn over promoting industry that has left its legion of supporters stunned.

Yet, it has set a world record in being the only communist government to have been democratically elected six times ever after taking power on June 21, 1977 at the head of a coalition of Left-leaning parties that capitalised on the mood following former prime minister Indira Gandhi's emergency rule in India.

A divided opposition has been unable to unseat the nine-party Left Front in election after election. But with protests breaking out over the government's decision to take over farmland to build industry, West Bengal is witnessing, perhaps for the first time, an anti-Left sentiment that is unprecedented.

Surprisingly, many leftwing sympathisers have turned critics. Sheikh Rafiq of Nandigram is one such person.

Rafiq, who grew up worshipping the brand of communism advocated by the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), is now a rebel with a cause. The 34-year-old minces no words while slamming the party, which he says has gained such heights because faceless millions like him faithfully watered it.

With Nandigram already simmering over the proposed land acquisition for a special economic zone (SEZ) envisioned by reformist Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, Rafiq is an indicator of the shape of things to come.

'We will die but not give up an inch of land,' Rafiq said. 'For 30 years we supported CPI-M, voted them to power and now the treacherous behemoth that we created is trying to swallow us.'

On March 14, Rafiq was punished as policemen and armed cadres of CPI-M stormed Nandigram and killed over a dozen protestors who were opposing takeover of farmland for industry.

It was on June 21, 1977 that 64-year-old London-educated communist Jyoti Basu took oath as chief minister of West Bengal, heralding the birth of a government that has gone on to win one election after another and seemed invincible until the recent mass protests against land acquisition.

CPI-M leaders say more than 13,00,000 acres of land have been distributed among poor and landless people since 1977. In a state where about 83 percent of agricultural land is with the poor and marginalised farmers, the programme still continues.

But with Chief Minister Bhattacharya - who makes no bones talking about the 'mistakes' of militant trade unionism - pledging to industrialise West Bengal in a big way, many of the poor are wondering if it will be at their cost.

This has already led to violence in places like Singur and Nandigram, which are trying to find a prominent place on West Bengal's industrial map.

'What is ironical after 30 years of Left rule in West Bengal is that the people of Nandigram who are fighting the Left are mostly their supporters,' explains Sabyasachi Basu Ray Chaudhury, a political scientist at the Rabindra Bharati University.

'Once they said 'langol jar, jami tar' (he who wields the plough owns the land). So when the transition is taking place, the process is violent. It is because the Left is trying to do in three months what they have not done in 30 years.

'If we try to list the positives of the Left Front government, the biggest is perhaps land reforms. Democratic decentralisation of power through the Panchayat system is also another success,' Basu Ray Chaudhury told IANS.

'In Bengal surplus land was acquired and distributed to the farmers and share-croppers. In Singur, they are the people who are on the forefront of agitation,' he said.

Kanu Sanyal, one of the founders of India's Maoist movement, lists the positives and negatives of Left rule in West Bengal as he sees it.

'The CPI-M did good work only in its first five years of power and never after that. Actually, the CPI-M or even the CPI (Communist Party of India) do not believe in total land reforms,' said the reclusive Naxalite who has re-entered active politics after farmers' protests in Singur.

Bhattacharya asserts that he is still a communist 'but I now believe more in democracy... But I am not practising communism here any more, what I am doing is (fostering) capitalism'.

It is difficult to believe in these times that it was only a year ago that the Left Front won a whopping 235 assembly seats, riding on the image of the suave Bhattacharya and his brand of industry-wooing liberal communism.

Said noted economist Aviroop Sarkar: 'The chief minister is on the right track so far as his impetus on industry is concerned. But the manner in which he proceeded has inherent loopholes. I think the Singur deal was not too profitable as the huge subsidy rolled out for the Tatas is not economically beneficial in long run.'

Though the communists in Bengal have often been blamed for driving away industry from the state, the corporates are less uncharitable now.

Said Rumela Das, a housewife in south Kolkata: 'We voted for the Left despite its failures because there is no credible opposition in this state. Despite all their arrogance, they offered us a stable government.

'The chief minister is trying hard to industrialise the state, but even there the opposition is opposing it just for the sake of it. Industry cannot come up in the air. The opposition should have bargained hard for better compensation to farmers than create a situation that would drive away the Tatas,' she felt.

Abandoned Gun Found in a Naxal-affected Area

Beltangady: Abandoned Gun Found in a Naxal-affected Area

Daijiworld Media Network - Beltangady (MM/RD)

Beltangady, Jun 19: An abandoned gun was found in a Naxal-affected area at Sulkeri near Naravi here on Monday, June 18. It was found in a pump house owned by Achan Kutti of Heraje Farm.

On receiving definite information, policemen led by Beltangady SI, Gangi Reddy, raided the spot and recovered the gun.

The police have taken the matter seriously since this is a Naxal-affected area and it was only a few days ago that a few Naxalites were spotted in the region. The investigation is focused on finding whether the gun belonged to the Naxals or someone had hidden it in order to supply it to the Naxals.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

“We will build roads near China border”

Sandeep Dikshit

We are very categorical that Arunachal Pradesh is part of India, says Antony

— Photo: R.V. Moorthy

Security to the fore: Defence Minister A.K. Antony and Army Chief General J.J. Singh after attending the Commanders-in-Chief conference in New Delhi on Monday.

NEW DELHI: India has defended the building of roads and other infrastructure near China border, saying it was “not a new thing” and “no one could prevent both sides” from doing so on their respective territories.

“China has been building infrastructure [near the Line of Actual Control]. We are also building infrastructure and nobody can prevent both sides. There is nothing wrong in that. They have the right [to build infrastructure] on their territory; we have the right to do that on ours. We are also trying to hasten the development of our infrastructure,” Defence Minister A.K. Antony told newspersons after addressing the Unified Commanders-in-Chief conference here on Monday.

The Minister said the impetus to developing the infrastructure in remote border areas was to “meet the aspirations of the people”. The Prime Minister’s Office and the Defence Ministry were directly carrying out infrastructure development.

Asked about Chinese claims to Indian territory, he said, “They have their perception. On our part we are very categorical that Arunachal Pradesh is part of India.”
Asked whether India and Pakistan were closer to resolving the Siachen dispute, he pointed out that India had “stated very clearly” that any forward movement would depend on Pakistan agreeing to authenticate the Actual Ground Position Line (AGPL) and the troops’ positions.

On the involvement of the armed forces in tackling the naxalite violence, he said: “At the moment we are not in favour of sending in the Army. There will be no direct involvement of the armed forces. We don’t want the Army to tackle civilian problems. It is the duty of State governments and paramilitary forces. We can assist them by giving training and equipment.”

On the multi-billion dollar tender for fighter aircraft, he said most of the work on sending request for proposals to competing foreign manufacturers was more or less over and only formalities remained to be completed.

The Minister said India was not worried but concerned about the acquisition of airpower by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. “A terrorist organisation gaining this kind of capability is a matter of concern.” India had the most “cordial relations” with Sri Lanka and was committed to its sovereignty, unity and integrity. “We will support them in whatever they need” but the ultimate solution to the ethnic problem was not military but political.

Air surveillance to tackle the Maoist menace


Union additional home secretary Vinay Kumar in Ranchi. Picture by Prashant Mitra
Ranchi, June 18: The Centre today assured the state government of starting air surveillance to tackle the extremism problem.

The assurance came from the additional secretary of the Union home ministry, Vinay Kumar, after a marathon review meeting with senior police officials and secretaries of different departments here today.

The review meetings are a part of the Union home ministry’s exercise to keep a tab on the state’s efforts to check the growing influence of the Maoists in the Naxalite-hit states.

In the first phase, Kumar had a discussion with the top police officers led by home secretary Sudhir Tripathi and DGP J.B. Mohapatra. In the second phase, Kumar held parleys with the secretaries of the rural development, health, forest, HRD, rural engineering and irrigation departments.

Chief secretary A.K. Chug was present in both the deliberations.

During the meeting with the police officers, Kumar was conveyed the need to start air surveillance in the state for neutralising the Naxalites effectively. The state police reiterated its demand for additional paramilitary forces to fight the rebels.

A top police officer present in the meeting told The Telegraph that Kumar said the Centre would start air surveillance in Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh shortly. After these two states, similar exercise would be started in Jharkhand.

The Union government official also took stock of the action plan prepared by the state government to combat extremism. Although the police officers refused to divulge the details of the plan, they claimed that Kumar expressed satisfaction over that the plan the state has prepared.

Later, in the meeting with the department secretaries, Kumar reviewed different development projects in the rural parts of the state and felt that there was a need to speed up the pace of the development activities.

“We had raised the issue of problems being faced in implementing the development schemes in the Naxalite dominated areas. But Kumar suggested that the departments should take the assistance of the police to implement the projects smoothly,” a source said.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Bombs & bullets fly, cops blame Maoists


A policeman holds a used bullet of a .315 rifle found on Bhangabera bridge. Picture by Sanat Kumar Sinha
Nandigram, June 17: Guns boomed and bombs flew in Nandigram again today, and police said Maoists were the “brains behind Friday’s attack”.

CPM activists continued their retaliatory strikes against the Bhoomi Uchchhed Pratirodh Committee, hurling bombs and firing across the Talpatti canal. The canal is a stone’s throw from Tekhali bridge, where the CPM began its revenge attack yesterday.

According to officials, the first shots were heard around 11 this morning. They were fired from an abandoned brick kiln on the Khejuri side.

Bombs were also hurled across the canal and the volley continued till 12.30 pm. There were, however, no casualties.

A CPM leader had said yesterday that the party wanted to avenge Friday’s “humiliation”. A Pratirodh Committee mob had gone on the rampage in villages in Nandigram, burning down CPM refugee camps and injuring five policemen. Over 600 CPM supporters were left homeless.

The police today said Maoists were responsible for the mayhem. Yesterday, they had blamed “outsiders”, while claiming off the record that the Naxalites had led the attack.

Around 15 to 20 Calcutta-based Maoists are still holed up in Nandigram, they added.

“These men have been there for more than a week. They are the brains behind Friday’s attack aimed at disrupting the peace process. They’re being treated very well by the villagers in Nandigram,” said a senior officer.

“We’ve made a list of the people responsible for Friday’s violence. But we cannot take action because we don’t have the orders to go inside the villages,” said Debashish Boral, the Tamluk additional superintendent of police.

The police found over 22 spent cartridges — some were 8 mm and the rest 12-bore cartridges — and used bullets of .315 rifles today. Boxes in which the 8-mm cartridges had been packed were also found on Bhangabera bridge. They had been manufactured in Pune.

An official said some of the attackers were armed with sophisticated weapons. “Among the 300-odd people in the mob that day, around 50 were carrying firearms. Twenty of them were sophisticated weapons.”

Boral said the police have requested CPM supporters in Khejuri to “lie low and not invite further trouble. There should not be any further provocation for more violence”.

The Pratirodh Committee said the “battle” would continue till the committee’s demands are met. It wants punishment for those responsible for the March 14 police firing and compensation for the families of the dead.

A five-member team of the Pratirodh Committee led by Trinamul Congress MLA Partha Chatterjee will visit Nandigram tomorrow. Chatterjee said he had written to Union home minister Shivraj Patil and spoken to governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi, seeking their intervention to stop the “regular attacks” from CPM camps

Maoists blow up road roller

MALKANGIRI, June 17: Maoists blew up two road rollers – one at Kapatuti village and the other at RSC-6 village in Papulur gram panchayat bordering Andhra Pradesh.
According to sources, about 25-30 Naxals armed with weapons, during their usual campaign came to Kapatuti village and blew up a roller used for road work between Spill Way and Papulur. It is said that the Maoists are against the road construction and regularly used to threaten the contractors in the work. In another incident the Maoists blew up a second roller at RSC-6, which was under use of the food for work project. No FIR was lodged by the Chitrakonda police, till the last report came in.
Later the Naxalites told the village people that “despite providing basic amenities to the tribals, the government is busy constructing roads to catch Naxals”. They threatened dire consequences in future. n SNS

KPS Gill no longer in Chattisgarh

Monday, June 18, 2007 10:46:45 IST
Gill might have successfully led the fight against the Khalistani challenge in Punjab, but in taming the Naxalite terror in Chattisgarh he did not make any headway

Over a year ago the Chhattisgarh Government announced with great fanfare that it had hired the services of the ace cop K.P.S. Gill as an adviser to help it tackle the ever-growing menace of Naxalite violence in the State.
But now that they have dispensed with the services of the controversial cop, not a word is being let out. Why? Because both sides may have reasons to feel embarrassed by the one-year stint the former Punjab cop did in Chattisgarh. Gill might have successfully led the fight against Khalistani challenge in the Punjab, but in taming the Naxalite terror in Chattisgarh he did not make any headway.
Besides, the BJP Government of Chief Minister Raman Singh was put off by his extravagant demands. Enjoying the perks and privileges of a special secretary to the Government, Gill was put up in a bungalow in Raipur where he would often entertain his friends from outside. His unconventional private life itself was the subject matter of much gossip in the political and bureaucratic circles in the State.
All this would have been ignored by an indulgent state government but for his failure to register tangible gains in blunting the threat from the armed guerrillas of the Peoples’ War Group. As a result, his one-year contract has not been renewed. The controversial cop will no longer enjoy the facility of a second home in Raipur

Naxals kill cop in Gadchiroli

17 Jun, 2007 l 0218 hrs ISTlTIMES NEWS NETWORK

GADCHIROLI: A group of naxals gunned down a police constable near Jhinganoor police station in Sironcha tehsil on Saturday. Forty-year-old constable Prakash Ghongle, along with his wife, was going towards Sironcha SDPO's office on his bike around 3.30 pm.

On the way, about 15 naxals of Sironcha dalam surrounded the couple. They sent away Ghongle's wife and then shot the police constable dead. The wife rushed to inform the cops. Soon, a police party arrived at the spot, but by then, the naxals had already fled from the scene.

Naxalite activities in the region have been on the rise in the recent days in the region. On Friday, naxals and policemen were engaged in a brief skirmish near Jhamalgatta in Sironcha tehsil. A day before that, the extremists had set fire to FDCM's bamboo depot in the same area, causing damage worth Rs 50,000.

Earlier, suspected naxals axed a man to death on the suspicion of being a police informer in Etappali tehsil on the night intervening Monday and Tuesday.

In another incident, naxals and police teams exchanged fire at two places in Dhanora tehsil on Monday.

Naxals kill cop in Gadchiroli

17 Jun, 2007 l 0218 hrs ISTlTIMES NEWS NETWORK

GADCHIROLI: A group of naxals gunned down a police constable near Jhinganoor police station in Sironcha tehsil on Saturday. Forty-year-old constable Prakash Ghongle, along with his wife, was going towards Sironcha SDPO's office on his bike around 3.30 pm.

On the way, about 15 naxals of Sironcha dalam surrounded the couple. They sent away Ghongle's wife and then shot the police constable dead. The wife rushed to inform the cops. Soon, a police party arrived at the spot, but by then, the naxals had already fled from the scene.

Naxalite activities in the region have been on the rise in the recent days in the region. On Friday, naxals and policemen were engaged in a brief skirmish near Jhamalgatta in Sironcha tehsil. A day before that, the extremists had set fire to FDCM's bamboo depot in the same area, causing damage worth Rs 50,000.

Earlier, suspected naxals axed a man to death on the suspicion of being a police informer in Etappali tehsil on the night intervening Monday and Tuesday.

In another incident, naxals and police teams exchanged fire at two places in Dhanora tehsil on Monday.

Bihar's forests under Naxal shadow

Monday, June 18, 2007 10:59:10 am

Posters on tree trunks inside Gaya’s forest reserve, allegedly put up by Naxals, warn of dire consequences for ‘trespassers’ including forest rangers
Naxal activity in Bihar has found a new breeding ground – the state's only forest reserve, has fallen to the Naxals.

TIMES NOW has exclusive information that Naxals in Bihar are expanding base and encroaching on government land to make bunkers and training camps.

Naxals have targetted the forest reserve in Bihar's Gaya district – the state’s only wildlife sanctuary the Gautam Buddha Sanctuary - as their training camp and have also made bunkers there. Out of the total area of the forest reserve, as much as 70% is under their influence. The area under question falls on the border between Bihar and Jharkhand, and is part of the infamous ‘Red Corridor’.

What is worse, the Government is aware of such illegal encroachments, but is just not equipped to doing anything about them. The sanctuary spans around 135 sq km, and has been in existence since 1979.

Forest rangers warned

File shot of a Naxal training camp
The Naxals have such immense hold on the land here that they have stuck posters inside the sanctuary, warning commoners against trespassing. For the Forest Rangers, the warning is more severe. The rangers have been warned that if they tread inside the Naxal territory, they will be beheaded.

Chief Conservator of Forests (Magadh Range) U S Jha says, “We have limited resources and there is this Naxal menace which is affecting the mobility of officers.”

What makes matters worse for the forest rangers is that they cannot defend themselves as they do not have any sophisticated armoury.

Meanwhile Lal Bahadur, leader of the Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) a Naxal group, has made the following statement : “We want to drive home the point that they (Naxals) can takeover anything, their high command decides on whether to use the forest land as training camp or for making bunkers.”

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Militants try to intrude through coastal areas

Statesman News Service
NEW DELHI, June 16: Finding it tough to intrude into India through Kashmir, Punjab and Rajasthan borders, militant outfits have now changed their intrusion route to the 2.9 million-square km Indian coast, where it is easy to dodge scarcely deployed coastal guards.

According to Intelligence agencies, Kashmir-based militant organisations have earmarked certain soft routes in western coastal areas to intrude into India. “At least half a dozen such incidents have recently been reported, where terrorists entered into India either by bribing those guarding the coastal areas or by dodging their eyes,” revealed an officer of a Central Intelligence agency.

The inputs have come from the interrogation of militants who were arrested by security agencies in Kashmir. Similar inputs have also been received by Intelligence agencies in wireless intercepts. Intelligence agencies have been warning coastal states and the Centre to beef up patrolling in these regions as the Indian coast has become an entry point for terrorists and the smuggling of logistic support to terrorists, Naxalites and other organised criminals.

“Most of the arms and ammunition smuggled into India either for terrorists, Naxalites or other organised criminals, are coming through the coastal regions,” the officers said, adding that: “We have been requesting government to do something about it lest it takes on alarming proportions in the days to come.”
Besides beefing up patrolling in the region, the coast guard and police stations in the coastal areas have to be equipped with modern gadgets, the officer said listing the handicaps of the state machinery in handling the growing threat to coastal security.

The government is aware of the threat and has already made a blue print to meet the challenge. It has decided to establish 73 new coastal police stations to curb smuggling and intrusion of terrorists, said a home ministry officer.
“Enforcement of maritime laws is another domain that is becoming increasingly important due to the rising threat of terrorism from the sea,” the official said.
The defence ministry has also submitted a $700 million plant to buy military equipment for coast guard to replace obsolete technology of coastal patrolling.
They have sought medium-altitude ship-borne UAVs, unmanned combat helicopters, medium-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft, new advanced off-shore patrol vessels (AOPVs), interceptor boats, advanced light helicopters and pollution-control vessels to fight the current problem

Two CPI-Maoist activists arrested in Bihar

Arwal, June 17: Two self-proclaimed zonal commanders of the CPI-Maoist Kamlesh Ram and Nanhak Yadav were arrested from two different villages in Bihar's Naxalite-affected Arwal district on Sunday.

District Superintendent of Police G P Bhadoria told reporters here that while the self-proclaimed zonal commander of the Naxalite Kamlesh Ram was arrested from Jhikatia Bara village, another Naxalite identified as Nanhak Yadav was taken into custody from Kurbi village in the district.

Both of them were wanted in over a dozen cases of loot, murder, kidnapping for ransom. They were being interrogated and would be produced before the court tomorrow, the SP said.

Bureau Report

Maoist threat to SEZs

Vinay Kumar
New conflict ground: security experts

Take steps to make people believe in government
Call for greater inter-State, inter-agency cooperation

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has described Maoists as "the biggest internal security challenge."

There are high-level coordination committees at the Central and State levels to constantly review and fine-tune counter strategies but left-wing extremism, which has spread across 15 States, now threatens to turn the special economic zones (SEZs) concept into a new conflict ground and potential agenda for its cadres. Inputs with internal security experts suggest that displacement of the local population, especially tribals, has been viewed by the Maoists as "conditions suiting the promotion of their revolutionary ideology."

Security forces, particularly the Central Paramilitary Forces, are also aware that the Maoist threat needs to be tackled not only by policing but also from economic and cultural perspectives.

The central forces and special forces such as the National Security Guard, endowed with cutting edge of technology and highly-trained manpower, feel the need for a pro-active approach and greater inter-State and inter-agency cooperation.

Key tools

Strategic analysis, update and constant review are some of the tools, which Central forces need to adopt quickly, experts say. The fight against Maoists is a widely encompassing one and has to be different from area to area.

R. Jaya Kumar of the Internal Security Academy of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) says last year's trend of left-wing extremism saw the continuation of the "Encirclement to Strangulation" campaigns in the form of the Jehanabad jail-break. Recoveries in Bhopal, Nagpur and Rourkela indicated the Maoist network's penetration in cities.

Rocket seizures in Andhra Pradesh pointed to their modern armoury and arsenal ambitions. Maoist cadres have also used a new modus operandi in landmine attacks through the use of flashgun in conjunction with radio trans-receiver and made efforts to use mobile phones in conjunction with micro-controlled, IC-based circuits.

The time has come for the CRPF, which contributes considerable strength of its manpower in eight States to tackle the naxalite menace, to ask itself whether the force is part of a meaningful game plan, whether it undertakes constant review of ground realities and whether it has achieved a high degree of synergy with the local police.

According to Mr. Jaya Kumar, policing in naxalite-affected areas must ensure basic instruments of governance. "For example, ensuring the public distribution system, medical care, veterinary facilities and other minor development works can be a few starters. The mere security dimensional role of the CRPF needs revaluation," he says. The key question is whether the civil action programme is oriented to address the grievances of the local population.

Reach out to people

Realising that the arc of left-wing extremism stretches across the country's heartland and its hold on the underprivileged continues to grow in several parts, security experts favour reaching out the instruments of governance to the afflicted areas so that the people there start believing in the government. There is concern at the intelligence failure on the part of the local establishment leading to Maoist attacks in Koraput, Madhuban, Giridih, Jehanabad, and more recently in Bastar and other places in Chhattisgarh.

Dantewada villages 'under siege'

Sudhi Ranjan Sen
Sunday, June 17, 2007 (Dantewada)
The government of Chattisgarh has isolated a cluster of villages across Indravati river in Dantewada because its residents refused to join the anti-naxal militia - the Salwa Judam.

Roughly 15,000 villagers are cut off and even salt or medicine is not allowed in.

The roads are blocked and special permission is required to enter the villages.

Many have fled the seige and those who remain said: ''We walk across the forest for two days to get even salt,'' a villager said.

''The government does not allow even salt or medical facilities,'' social worker Himanshu confirmed.

Salwa Judam offers the villagers one choice - join us or be branded a Maoist.

Those who refused to fall in line lost access to everything.

There's fear in the air that Salwa Judam rules the roads and the Maoists run the forests.

Farmers do not till their lands and Salwa Judam patrols burn their crops, villagers said. Village after village houses lay empty.

Also fishing in the Indrawati river is risky because if spotted by the 'special police officers' of the Salwa Judam it could pose a risk to life.

In case one manages to escape the Salwa Judam the Maoists snatch away whatever little they have.

But Home Minister Ramvichar Neetam claims that he did not receive any complaints from anyone and his government claims the villagers are Naxal sympathisers

Two policemen injured in a blast in Chhattisgarh

17 Jun, 2007 l 1814 hrs ISTlPTI

RAIPUR: Two policemen were injured when a bomb planted by Maoists went off in Chhattisgarh's Bijapur district on Sunday, police said.

"A police party was on a anti-Naxal operation when two Special Police Officers (SPOs) stepped on a 'pressure bomb', planted by the Maoists and got seriously injured," police officials from Bijapur said.

The incident took place in Tikler area under Cherpal police station, about 550 kms from the state capital on Sunday afternoon, they said.

Bijapur, which falls under the Bastar region, is a highly Naxal-infested district.