Saturday, September 08, 2007

‘It would have been better if I were killed’

Saturday September 8 2007 13:02 IST


NELLORE: Deeply shocked, former Chief Minister N Janardhan Reddy found it difficult to come to terms with the attempt on his and his wife’s life. When he was shifted from Chitvedu to Nellore, he could not speak to mediapersons who tried to seek his comments on what happened.

After all, he had fainted immediately after the incident and it took him some time to recover.

Later speaking to mediapersons in Nellore, a visibly shaken Reddy said it would have been better if he was killed instead of his close followers. ‘‘I know them from their childhood and they were very dear to me. Why should they (Maoists) target innocents and what do they expect to achieve?’’ he said with tears in his eyes and termed the mine blast a cowardly act.

His wife Rajyalakshmi, a member of the State Cabinet, recalled that when she heard the sudden sound, her driver said it was the sound of a tyre burst. ‘‘Then security personnel came rushing and asked us to leave the place immediately. When we looked into the rear-view mirror, we saw a cloud of dust and the parts of the car behind us being blown 10 feet high. We were totally shocked,’’ she said.

In an anguished voice, she condoled the deaths of her followers and said that they were very close to her family. She said that she and her husband were targeted as it was clearly evident.

‘‘By God’s grace, we escaped by hair’s breadth. Had we been late by a fraction of a second out car would have been blown apart,’’ she said trying hard to come to terms with what had happened. She said that she was restraining herself from crying out loud before the media.

Blaming the blast on security lapse, the senior Congress MP said that if police were alert the tragedy could have been averted. Janardhan Reddy’s residence in Nellore was flooded with anxious party leaders and followers. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Chief Minister Rajasekhara Reddy and several others spoke to Reddy over the phone and enquired about the couple’s well-being.

Several leaders, irrespective of their party affiliation, condemned the blast and blamed lax security arrangements for the incident.

Maoists gaining ground, says BJP

User Rating: / 0 Saturday, 08 September 2007

Karimnagar, September 08: Senior BJP leader and former Union Minister Ch. Vidysagar Rao on Friday condemned the landmine attack on former Chief Minister N Janardhan Reddy and Minister N. Rajyalaxmi.

Addressing a press conference here, he said that the government was under the impression that naxalism is on the wane in the State. But in reality, the movement was growing and suggested that the government treat the issue as a law and order and socio-economic problem and tackle the issue on both the fronts.

He said that Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy should also instil confidence among the people of Telangana as they were feeling insecure following the sale of lands to individuals and private companies. The selling away of government lands to private companies would create unrest among the people, he maintained.

On the party’s Telangana convention, he said that several farmers of the region have represented to them urging the government to waive agricultural loans. He also alleged that there was discrimination towards the farmers of Telangana region by the commercial banks.

Against the credit ratio of 60 per cent, the commercial banks were maintaining a credit ratio of only 37 per cent in Karimnagar district thus leading to suicides by farmers, he said.

On Telangana liberation day, he urged upon the people to hoist the tri-colour on September 17 to mark liberation of Telangana from the Nizam rule.


Material used in A.P. blast appears to be nitroglycerine

Vellore, Sept. 9 (PTI): The material used to trigger the landmine blast on Friday by suspected Maoists, in which former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Janardhan Reddy and his wife escaped unhurt, appeared to be nitroglycerine, produced by Tamil Nadu Explosives Limited at Katpadi near here, police said.

Police said they were carrying out checks to find out the dealers who had supplied the explosive to the Maoists. Enquiries were also conducted with all dealers who supply explosives to stone quarries in Vellore district, they said.

Meanwhile, police said vehicle checks had been intensified along the Andhra Pradesh-Tamil Nadu border in the wake of the landmine blast. Forest department officials are assisting the police in the checks, they said.

Round the clock patrolling is being done at check posts in Ponnai, Melpadi, Katpadi, Christianpet, Tiruvalam, Gudiyattam, Pradaram, Pernambut and Natrampalli, they said.

Cops in Maoist terror areas seek central deputation

Raipur, Sep 8 : As many as nine senior police officers posted in India's worst Maoist insurgency hit state Chhattisgarh are reportedly lobbying to get central deputation, but the state government is reluctant to approve their applications.

According to sources in the state's home department, nine Indian Police Service (IPS) officers, including those of the rank of director general (DG) and additional director general (ADG), most of them having long field experience in Maoist areas, have moved applications with the state government to get approval for their central deputations.

The officers who have reportedly sought deputation are S.K. Paswan, the longest serving IPS officer in Maoist bastion, R.K. Vij, currently posted in the Bastar region as inspector general (IG), M.W. Ansari, who earlier served as IG, Bastar, deputy inspector general (DIG) Pawan Deo, presently in charge of two Maoist-hit districts - Kanker and Narayanpur, and the state's senior most IPS officer Rajiv Mathur, now holding the post of director general (prisons and home guards).

Other IPS officers seeking central deputation are ADG A.M. Nawani, IG Sanjay Pillai, now secretary, home, and IGs Mukesh Gupta and A.D. Gautam, the sources said.

But the state government seems to be in no mood to relent.

"The state is witnessing a series of cold blooded killings of civilians and forces in southern Bastar region and the government is working on a major counter-insurgency operation against the guerrillas. How the government can relieve the top cops in a such a crucial phase?" a top official in the home department told IANS Saturday.

--- IANS

Jana vows to curb extremism

Saturday September 8 2007 12:50 IST


NELLORE: Home Minister K Jana Reddy, accompanied by Director- General of Police Basit, visited Chendodugutta in Kota mandal this evening, where Maoists triggered a powerful landmine.

Later, addressing a media conference here, the Home Minister said the CPI (Maoist) targeted former chief minister N Janardhan Reddy for imposing a ban on the erstwhile People’s War Group.

The successive governments continued the ban on Naxalites. The Maoists made the abortive attempt on the lives of former Chief Minister and his Minister wife N Rajyalakshmi to make their presence felt, he said.

‘‘We would not be cowed down by the attack. We continue our aggressive stance against the CPI (Maoist),’’ the Home Minister said.

Condemning the blast in which two Congress workers and a car driver were killed, he said UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi conveyed her condolences to the bereaved families. The State Government would extend all possible help to the families of victims, he said.

‘We are facing a tough situation in AP’

Saturday September 8 2007 00:58 IST

These are excerpts from the written response of Maoist leader Ganapathy to a set of questions sent by this website's newspaper reporter Shafi Rahman. It was received two days ago.

Q: Isn’t it a fact that violence pushes a large number of people away from your party? Is your party planning more political assassinations like that of JMM leader and Jamshedpur MP Sunil Mahto in the near future?

A: We do not kill everyone just because he/she is an MP or a minister. Although all legislators are responsible for all the policies made by the Government, it is mainly a small coterie of political leaders that play a crucial role in finalising the policies. We single out for attack such leaders.

In the case of Sunil Mahto, we had to eliminate him because he has been actively involved in unleashing brutal repression on the revolutionary movement in Jharkhand. We basically rely on mobilisation of the masses to isolate, expose and fight the anti-people policies of various political parties.

Q: How much of ‘Indian territory’ is under Maoist control? The Prime Minister once said 160 out of 604 districts. Was it an exaggeration?

A: We are indeed flattered by such statistics. But one thing we can understand from the Prime Minister’s statement i.e. how much of a nightmare we have become to the reactionary ruling classes of India. It is an exaggeration to say that Maoists control that many districts, but our influence goes beyond that.

Q: What are the reasons for serious losses in Andhra Pradesh recently?

A: We have shifted our focus to liberating more backward areas in central and eastern India. Hence we are now concentrating on on Dandakaranya (comprising parts of AP, Madhya Pradesh and Orissa), Bihar and Jharkhand.

You must have known that AP was made into a model state, with focus on brutal repression of the revolutionary movement. No other state affected by the Naxalite movement has such a massive police commando force as in AP, with unlimited powers. No other state has witnessed such a bloodbath as in AP, particularly from the mid-1980s. There are hardly any political prisoners in AP jails since the policy had always been to bump off the revolutionaries. Fake encounter killings had been the tradition right from the time of Vengal Rao during the struggle of Srikakulam almost 40 years ago.

Moreover, crores of rupees have been spent on the socalled reforms with the aim of weaning away people from the revolutionary movement. Now,these tactics are being used in several other states. We are making an in-depth study of these tactics and planning measures to counter them.

Q: How do you see issues like Singur and Nandigram and how do you intend to get involved in such issues?

A: We intend to mobilise the masses against the conspiracies and treacherous policies of the rulers to snatch the land of the people and hand over the same to the MNCs and big business houses in the name of development through creation of hundreds of SEZs.

Q: History shows that the middle class wants status quo. Indian middle class is growing more powerful. How do you plan to co-opt them?

A: It is true that the Indian middle class has grown in number. At the same time, a sizeable chunk of the middle class is facing cute crisis due to soaring prices, unemployment, growing insecurity of life, steep increases in family expenditure due to high cost of education, health, transport etc. In short, despite the numerical growth of the middle class it is at the receiving end.

The growing frustration among the middle class is forcing them to take to the streets as witnessed in strikes and other forms of struggles by teachers, government employees, and even shopkeepers who are affected by the shopping malls and FDI in retail sector.

Q: Why can’t you contest polls and go to Parliament and raise issues in a democratic way?

A: It is indeed a logical question which anyone who sees only the outer shell of so-called parliamentary democracy would ask. What is important is the kernel, the essence, the content and not just the form. When you strip off the outer garment of democracy you find the rotten, stinking corpse inside. That is why Lenin described Parliament as a pig-sty and a mere talking shop. The Parliamentary institutions have no real power. It is the executive which carries out everything.

Q: Globally the fight is now becoming pro-globalisation versus Islamic upsurge. In this scheme of things, how do you see a classless society?

A: Islamic upsurge is a reaction to imperialist globalisation, oppression and exploitation of the people, and Muslim masses in particular. As long as imperialism exists, and as long as it bolsters up decadent reactionary comprador Islamic regimes in countries of Asia and Africa, it is impossible for the Muslim masses to come out of their fundamentalism.

It is only after the destruction of imperialism on a world scale can the Islamic masses come out completely from their obscurantist ideology and values. This will pave the way for the establishment of a classless society.

Security tips build army friendship

- Indo-Thai joint exercise to learn counter-insurgency skills in urban areas

A Thai army sapper takes position during “Maitree” at Sikh Regimental Centre at Ramgarh on Saturday. Picture by Chandrajit Mukherjee

Ramgarh, Sept. 8: Clearing roads littered with landmines and explosive devices in Naxalite and extremist areas for safety of security personnel and their convoys formed the basics of a training exercise of Thailand and Indian army sappers at Sikh Regimental Centre here today.

The training was part of the joint exercise, “Maitree”, between the armies of the two countries.

The mock drill included securing of road and clearing all improvised explosive devices, which maybe set up on the road and can affect supplies and life of security personnel.

The exercise included careful combing of the roads from where a convoy is to pass and jawans demonstrated the use of metal detectors and sniffer dogs to locate any unidentified object which might be an explosive. Once the explosive is located, it is not defused but is blown off by setting another charge next to it. To dismantle an explosive device often turns to be fatal and it is safer to blast it off, said an instructor at the centre.

Other training exercises included slithering from a helicopter and rappelling from a high-stone wall. Close-quarter firing and cross-firing at targets from point blank range were also conducted during the exercise. Each Indian sapper has been paired with a Thai soldier to enable them to work as a team and learn from each other.

The Thai troops, who are relatively new in the field of tackling counter insurgency in urban areas, would be given extensive training along with their Indian counterparts during the two-week joint exercise.

The Thai team of 49 members, including officers and soldiers, has been joined by an equal number of Indians from the 28 Punjab Battalion.

Cops to stop funds supply to Maoists

Joydeep Thakur
KOLKATA, Sept. 8: To beat the Maoist menace in the state, police are keen to cut off their funds supply. Intelligence Branch officials and the police of Midnapore West, Purulia and Bankura have prepared a list of private firms and businessmen who are suspected to have provided funds to Maoists over the past few years. These people have been put under surveillance.
A senior IB official said they have recorded telephonic conversations between Maoists and the owners of some private firms, including petrol pumps, and other businessmen. The ultras were found to be demanding and negotiating for funds.
The official said most of the funds come from businessmen who are engaged in illegal mining. Purulia, Bankura and Midnapore West have several abandoned mines where businessmen engage labourers to extract copper, lead and limestone, used in the cement industry.
These businessmen are the primary targets of the Maoists. They have no other option but to pay the “levy” as they are not able to lodge complaints with the police.
If they decline to pay, they are threatened and eventually eliminated.
“The telephonic conversations that have been obtained, however, reveal that most of the businessmen who had provided funds have been pressured and threatened by Maoists,” the official said. The police stations concerned have been alerted and a close watch is being maintained.
Some of the Maoist cadres who have been arrested over the past few years have also confessed during interrogation about such practices.
Police had also detained some businessmen and illegal mine owners for questioning.
The official said Maoists were forcing farmers in some remote villages of these districts to take up opium cultivation. They are then demanding a major portion of the harvest, which are sold in the market to raise funds.
If the farmers decline to hand over the crop, they are either killed or the harvest is taken way by the cadres forcibly.
The funds are used to acquire arms and infrastructure like satellite phones, sustain cadres, provide training, run propaganda campaigns, distribute and print literature.

After lull, Maoists back in business

Saturday September 8 2007 13:24 IST


NELLORE: After a prolonged lull, the CPI (Maoist) Naxalites bestirred themselves, making an abortive attempt on the life of former Chief Minister Nedurumalli Janardhan Reddy and his Minister wife N Rajyalakshmi by triggering a powerful landmine at Chendodugutta, about 10 km from here on Friday morning.

The Reddy couple escaped unhurt but three persons, including two Congress workers, were killed on the spot. Five people suffered injuries.

Seventy-two-year-old Janardhan Reddy, who represents Visakhapatnam in the Lok Sabha, had acted tough on the Naxalites when he was Chief Minister of the State in the early 90s.

It was during his stint that the erstwhile People’s War Group was banned and some important Naxalite leaders eliminated.

Janardhan Reddy and Rajyalakshmi were on their way to Tirupati where the former was to receive an honorary doctorate from the Sri Venkateswara University.

The senior Congress leader set out for Tirupati from his house in Vakadu, on the outskirts of the town, in a convoy of about 25 vehicles.

The convoy reached the Chendodugutta area, about one kilometre from Vidyanagar village of Kota Manal at around 6:20 a.m. When it passed over a newly-laid culvert the Maoists triggered the blast. While Reddy’s vehicle missed the explosion by a whisker, the next vehicle bore the impact and was blown to bits. The body parts of the victims were strewn some 300 to 500 metres from the blast site.

Security personnel whisked away the dazed couple to safety without stopping the vehicle and took them to Chitvedu village, some 7 km away. After they recovered, police personnel shifted them to Nellore.

The landmine, which could have been planted a few days ago, was triggered by a camera flash about 250 yards from the culvert.

Police recovered a flash and a bundle of wire from the spot. This is the second attempt on the life of Reddy, the first being at Dachepalli mandal in Guntur district in 2003.

At that time, police detected the landmine 30 minutes before he was to pass the spot. The three deceased were identified as B Nagarjuna Reddy, a contractor from Nellore, who is also president of the N Janardhan Reddy Yuvasena in the district, his driver Mallikarjun Reddy, and Venkatagiri Congress leader P Dasaiah.

According to locals, some people were found drinking at the bomb blast site late on Thursday night. They said a person asking questions about Reddy and the movements of his vehicle was taken into custody.

Octopus’ tentacles for terrorists

Saturday September 8 2007 00:00 IST

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: State Government, in principle agreed to set up of “Octopus,” a dedicated and independent anti-terrorist wing. A high-level officers committee led by Director-General of Police MA Basith submitted a proposal to Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy here on Friday.

Sources said the Chief Minister has accepted the proposal and it will take a final shape soon.

Later, speaking to mediapersons, the Chief Minister said the dedicated anti-terrorist wing will be set up as part of the State Government's efforts to strengthen the police department.

“We have to recruit a few thousand police personnel and acquire some latest technology and gadgets. These issues will be looked into,” he said adding money is not a constraint for the war on terrorism.

At the same, steps will be taken to strengthen the anti-Naxalite wings. The officers have been asked to come up with a proposal for the purpose, he said.

Reddy said that different strategies should be adopted to deal with Islamic fundamentalism and Left wing extremism.

Meanwhile, the city police obtained five days custody of Shafia Rafsanjani, a Bangladeshi woman after the Aug 25 blasts. Four others were picked up by the Task Force sleuths from Bowenpally and Marredpally areas suspecting them to be having links with terror groups.

On the other hand, the efforts of the police to track down the RDX smuggled in by Shahid and Abu Hamza are yet to yield any result. Similarly, the police are yet to nab Rizwan Gazi, who escaped from his Hyderabad hideout soon after the blasts.

Cops foxed again?

8 Sep 2007, 0345 hrs IST,TNN

HYDERABAD: In light of the attack on former chief minister N Janardhan Reddy and his wife N Rajyalakshmi, sources revealed that police had prior information that a four-member special action squad of the Maoists was on the prowl for a big strike.

The intelligence wing had alerted the SPs of the districts in August itself to be extra cautious in ensuring security for VIPs. However, the intelligence wing could not identify the Maoists’ target.

The special action squad of the Maoists specialises in executing attacks on VIPs. This squad functions directly under the central committee or Central Regional Bureau (CRB), which coordinates with the central committee and state committees. The ‘cream’ of the Maoists who are well-trained and well-equipped are used for such special purposes.

"There was information of a possible major strike in August itself. Photographs of action team members were sent to districts. The city police were also alerted. The incident was expected to happen either in the city or in the chief minister’s home district of Kadapa. An attack in Nellore was not expected," an intelligence official told ‘TOI’. The police suspect the special action team might have been supervised by Ashanna, who was involved in the killing of former minister A Madhava Reddy and IPS officer Umesh Chandra.

The police also suspect the role of top Maoist leader Sakhamuri Appa Rao in the attack on the former chief minister in Nellore district. Intelligence sources said Appa Rao was reportedly transferred to the AP State Committee from Andhra-Orissa Border Special Zonal Committee (AOBSZC) to execute some major attacks. Appa Rao was state military commission member and was sent to AOBSZC on disciplinary grounds but was probably called back for the special mission in the state.

The police are also verifying information about one Vikas and Chakali Niranjan alias Vijay for their possible involvement in the Friday’s blast. As per the police records, Vikas was state committee member of Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee (DKSZC) and in-charge of Gadchiroli district of Maharashtra. But he was killed in an encounter last year.

"It is possible that the Maoists may have given the same name to another person as is their tradition of keeping a martyr’s name alive," a senior police officer handling Maoist affairs said.

Another Maoist Chakali Niranjan alias Vijay was also a member of a special action team in the past but his movements in the recent past were not known to the police.

Meanwhile, the police have started checking information from recently surrendered naxalites about the special action squad that was part of the operation against N Janardhana Reddy. They are also trying to identity the Maoists who have knowledge of the topography of Nellore district. Usually, for big operations like the one on NJR, the local Maoist teams are not involved lest information about the operation gets leaked.

The anti-naxalite Greyhounds teams have also been sent to Nellore district for combing the entire area for those behind the Friday blast

Red alert in Gadchiroli

9 Sep 2007, 0329 hrs IST,TNN

NAGPUR: Following Naxalites’ attempt in the neighbouring Andhra Pradesh to blow up the vehicle of Congress MP and former Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Janardhana Reddy on Friday, red alert was sounded in Gadchiroli and Gondia districts.

However, the bandh called by the Maoists evoked poor response in Vidarbha. The Naxalites had given bandh call to protest against arrests of Vikram and Vishnu in Mumbai. The North Gadchiroli Gondia Dalams took the lead in organising protests but no untoward incident was reported.

The combing operations were intensified in the dense forests to flush out Naxals, said SP Gadchiroli Anant Rokade.Meanwhile, a press statement handed over to this newspaper and claiming to have been issued by Ratan, spokesman of Maharashtra state committee of Communist Party of India (Maoist) demanded immediate release of Vishnu and Vernon Gonsalves

AP govt ready to hold talks with Naxals: Reddy

Hyderabad, Sept 08: A day after Maoist attack on former Chief Minister N Janardhan Reddy, Andhra Pradesh government today said it was willing to resume talks with Naxalites provided they gave up arms.

"We are ready to hold talks with Naxalites if they shun violence," Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Rajashekhar Reddy told reporters here.

The Congress government, he said, had initiated the talks with Maoists in October 2004 and had been maintaining that dialogue was possible only if they gave up weapons.

The Chief Minister said there was a need to strengthen the police set-up which still had several shortcomings.

"We have to see that the youth is not attracted towards Naxalism," Reddy said after calling on Janardhan Reddy and his wife N Rajyalakshmi, a minister in the state, at their residence here.

The couple had arrived in the city earlier in the day after worshipping at Tirumala temple.

Bureau Report

Naxals prove their presence in Nellore district

Saturday September 8 2007 13:12 IST


TIRUPATI: Friday’s abortive attempt on the lives of former Chief Minister and senior Congress leader N Janardhan Reddy and his wife and Women and Child Welfare Minister N Rajyalakshmi effectively shattered the general impression that Nellore district is free of Maoists.

The entire operation had the signature of Maoists written all over it, blasting the claims of the Police Department that there is no presence of Maoists in the district. That too with the Maoists being active in the neighbouring Prakasam and Kadapa districts. The dense forests along the borders of Kadapa and Prakasam have been a safe shelter for the extremists.

However, district police higher officials still maintain that there is no presence of Maoists in the district.

‘‘Friday’s blast could be the handiwork of Maoists from outside the district, probably from Nallamalla. We are forming teams to find out who is behind the attack and arrest them at the earliest,’’ Superintendent of Police K Lakshmi Reddy told this website’s newspaper over telephone.

The 1960 murder of a landlord, Venka Reddy, in Tallapalem village in Kavali Rural Mandal is generally seen as the first event in revolutionary movement in the district. The movement gained ground and witnessed increased violence till 1972 and students and unemployed youth were drawn to revolutionary outfits like RSU, PDSAU, Pragathiseela Mahila Morcha.

During this period, Adinarayana Reddy, father of present Alur MLA K Vishnuvardhan Reddy, was killed in a bomb blast at Madras Bus Stand in Nellore. The incident was the handiwork of the extremists.

CPM municipal councilor Malakonda Reddy was murdered in the municipal office itself and the reign of terror continued till Emergency was clamped in 1975.

Following State Government ban on the PWG, a large number of Naxalites from Telangana sought refuge in the remote forests of Rapur, Tegacharla, Udayagiri, Penchalakonda, Seetharamapuram, Siddheswarakona, Dakkali, Pannani, Balayapalle and Marripadu, among others.

Following increasing incidence of extortions in the district the police woke up to the threat of Naxals and there were a number of ‘encounters’ between the police and the Naxalites till 1997. During this period Naxals made a vain bid to attack an explosives manufacturing unit in Saidapuram Mandal.

Superintendents of police like Ramanamurthy and Krishna Prasad took effective steps to contain the extremist movement in the district. The extent of the movement was a well kept secret till two Naxalites were killed in an encounter in Kutalamarri on Nellore-Kadapa border. Later, in joint operations Nellore and Kadapa police succeeded to some extent in containing the Naxal threat in the region.

Naxal leaders like Suryam and Padmakka were killed in Kovuru encounter.

Janashakti Naxal top leader Riaz alias Venkateswarlu, a native of Venkateswarapuram in Kavali Rural Mandal, was said to be responsible for recruitment of youth.

Andhra : 13 ministers on naxalite hit list

9 Sep 2007, 0253 hrs IST,TNN

HYDERABAD: Thirteen ministers, apart from chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy and home minister K Jana Reddy, are on the hit list of Maoists in the state. The top brass of the state police has already informed this to the state government and alerted the ministers about the risk they face.

The ministers have been asked not to venture out of the capital without informing the police here. They will also have to inform the police in their respective districts, constituencies and whichever places they intend to visit a few days in advance.

Though the Maoists have not declared all the 13 as their target, for the last one year or so, police have been getting information that these ministers would be targeted. Recently, the threat perception to chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy was reviewed and his security increased only because of threat from Maoists.

Among the ministers who figure in the Maoists hit list are: Shabbir Ali, J C Diwakar Reddy, Ponnala Laxmaiah, Kanna Laxminarayana, Konathala Ramakrishna, K Rosaiah, D Srinivas, Anam Ramnarayana Reddy and T Jeevan Reddy.

In view of threat to these ministers, bullet-proof cars have been provided to at least six of them besides increasisng their security.

The Police Transport Organisation (PTO) is in the process of acquiring some more bullet-proof cars that will be given to other ministers facing naxal threat.

Maoists hatched plot in Chennai

9 Sep 2007, 0251 hrs IST,TNN

HYDERABAD: The conspiracy to eliminate former chief minister N Janardhan Reddy was hatched and monitored from Chennai by the Maoist party’s central committee members.

The intelligence wing has gathered that top Maoist leaders take shelter in Chennai considering it to be relatively safe as the police in Andhra Pradesh are hot on their trail. Senior police officials involved in the anti-naxalite operation said they had information that even central committee members of the CPI (Maoists) would frequently visit Chennai. The AP State Committee of Maoists has its tentacles in Guntur, Prakasam, Nalgonda and all Rayalaseema districts, including Nellore.

Police believe the Maoists have chosen Nellore district for the attack on the former chief minister due to its proximity to Chennai.

"Since a former chief minister was the target, the central committee leaders themselves must have planned and monitored the attack from Chennai. We suspect those who carried out the operation might have escaped to Chennai," a senior police officer said.

One top Maoist leader who was arrested on the Andhra-Orissa border reportedly revealed that the Maoists conducted a recce in Visakhapatnam last year as part of their conspiracy to kill N Janardhan Reddy and but could not execute the plan.

The police have come to an initial conclusion that a special action squad executed the Friday’s attack under the supervision of top Maoist leader Sakhamuri Appa Rao. Another expert in special assignments Ashanna alias Takkelapalli Vasudeva Rao had led the team.

The officers admit that the Maoists shifted their base from Nellore to Chennaiin 2004 and 2005.

Whenever AP State Committee of Maoists holds meeting in Nallamala, Nellore is the transit point for leaders to reach the venue.

Tech Madhu, who was the mastermind in the rocket launchers case, took shelter in Nellore along with another ‘den keeper’ Satyam alias Satyaraj. The police suspected some of the rocket launchers and weapons were made in Nellore district itself.

When Tech Madhu shifted to Chennai for manufacturing rocket launchers in Ambattur in north-western suburb of Chennai, Satyam was shifted to another den in Chennai. When the rocket launchers were seized in Giddaluru in Prakasham district, the police found that one consignment was booked from Vedayapalem in Nellore district.

Pressure mines, which were seized from a transport company in Vijayawada in October, 2006, were made in Nellore. The explosives were intended to be sent to Nallamala.

The intelligence officers dismiss the argument by the local police that there are no naxal activities in Nellore district. Sitaramapuram mandal, which has border with Kadapa and Prakasham district, Rapur, Venkatagiri, Pattapupalem and Allur mandals are naxal effected. In some villages in Dakkili mandal, CPI (ML) Janasakthi has dalams.

The slain top Janasakthi leader, Riyaz, was from Nellore district.

Combing operations in forest area

Combing operations in forest area

Coimbatore, Sept. 9 (PTI): Police on Saturday carried out combing operations in the forest areas in and around Mettupalayam in Coimbatore district, to check possible infiltration of Naxalites, following the landmine blast in Nellore in Andhra Pradesh.

More than 100 police personnel, with the assistance of sniffer dogs, were involved in the search operations in Mettupalayam and Sirumugai forest areas, they said.

The search was 'routine in nature,' police said, adding there was no specific information about the infiltration or naxal activities in the district.

Former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, N Janardhana Reddy, and his wife escaped unhurt in the blast suspected to be triggered by Maoists Friday.

Andhra police, Maoists exchange fire

Hyderabad, Sept. 8 (PTI): Naxals traded gunfire with Andhra Pradesh police in a forest during a combing operation by security forces in Visakhapatnam district today.

The Maoists and the police engaged in the gunbattle near Sileru hydral power project after a police party was fired upon during a combing operation, police said.

However, there were no casualties on either side but police recovered landmines and naxal literature from the scene, they said.

Police set-up to be revamped

Police set-up to be revamped

Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD: Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy said here on Friday that the Government would revamp the entire police set up to make it more effective in tackling left wing extremism and terrorism.

Dr. Reddy said he had asked the police top brass to submit a report within a week to strengthen the set up by spelling out the requirements of additional manpower, technical upgradation and new weaponry. “We are contemplating a thorough revamp from the sub-division to the State level. The modalities are being worked out for this. We are analysing the strengths and weaknesses of the existing police organisation,” he said.

Dr. Reddy expressed shock at the attack by naxalites on senior Congress MP and former Chief Minister N. Janardhana Reddy and his wife Rajyalakshmi, Minister for Women Development & Child Welfare, in Nellore district. He said it was a cowardly act. Speaking to the media after reviewing with the police top brass the situation arising out of the attack, the Chief Minister said his Government was able to contain extremist activity in the State for three years now.

As a result, the extremists had yielded considerable ground. “Today’s attack was an attempt to re-establish their lost identity.”

Dr. Reddy said the planned revamp of police would include strengthening the intelligence network and creating actions on the basis of intelligence leads.

Conveying his sympathies to the families of the three persons killed in the landmine blast, the Chief Minister said the Government would pay ex gratia to them as per the existing rules.
Combat force

Meanwhile, Home Minister K. Jana Reddy held discussions with the top-brass of the police here on Thursday to work out details of the elite intelligence-cum-combat force now being formed by the Government to fight terrorism.

The discussions centred round the issue of raising of the force through fresh mass recruitment, and by way of deputations from the existing police force, the type of weapons to be given to them, and the salaries to be offered.

Friday, September 07, 2007

ISI inmates terrorise Maoists

7 Sep 2007, 0242 hrs IST,TNN

HYDERABAD: In jail, ISI terrorists move the pawns. Within the impregnable ‘Papagni’ block of the Central Prison in Charlapally, the terrorists, who kick up a row whenever they want to have their way, have scared even the Maoists.

Virtually terrorised by their behaviour, some Maoists lodged in cells within the same block, have requested jail authorities and got themselves shifted to another block.

"For some reason, the Maoists, considered deadly, wanted to be segregated from ISI terrorists," a jail source said. Now left to themselves, the ISI terrorists play chess, volleyball and read newspapers. The high security ‘Papagni’ block has 20 cells where only dreaded criminals are lodged. At present, it has 12 to 14 ISI terrorists, including convicts and undertrials, on whom there is a 24-hour vigil.

Sources in the prisons department said, the terrorists are let out of their cells in the morning and allowed to move freely within the block till evening. However, they when it is time to get back. They insist that they be allowed to perform religious duties only to delay going back to their cells.

While other blocks have TV sets for inmates, the block housing ISI terrorists does not have one. As per prison rules, all inmates have to be allowed to meet visitors during a certain time. In the case of ISI terrorists, jail staff ensures that identity of the visitors is checked thoroughly and keeps a record of the identity proof that is furnished by them.

"The convicts want to be sent home on parole. This is not possible unless police in their respective areas clear their name. When this does not happen they get angry," a jail official said. After the twin blasts on August 25 and Mecca Masjid blast of May 18, ISI terrorists numbers in the jail are going up.

Maoists plan to attack iron ore stocks

Thursday, 06 September , 2007, 04:08

Raipur: Maoist guerrillas are planning to step up attacks on iron ore mining facilities in the Bailadila hills in Chhattisgarh, according to police sources.

The hills are known for one of the largest and finest quality iron ore stocks in the world and account for 18 per cent of India's estimated 24 billion tones of iron ore deposits.

Police sources said they have found leaflets and posters in which the radicals have vowed to intensify attacks on iron ore facilities in the Bailadila hills in Dantewada district.

The red-coloured Hindi leaflets recovered from hilly terrains close to Bailadila hills say: "Chhattisgarh's forests have vast stocks of natural resources but big companies have found access to the rare natural stocks while the poor forest dwellers are becoming poorer every day."

The Bailadila hills iron ore is divided into 14 deposits. The National Mineral Development Corp (NMDC), India's largest public sector iron ore producer and exporter, has mining activities in three deposits. It also has a deal with the Chhattisgarh government for opening up deposit number 13 in a joint venture.

Two private steel majors, Tata Steel and Essar Steel, recently got prospecting licences to feed their upcoming mega plants.

Tata Steel has a written deal with the state government to set up a five million tonnes per annum (mtpa) steel plant with Rs 10,000 crore investment in Bastar. It has bagged a prospecting licence for deposit number one that has an estimated stock of 150 million tonnes.

Essar Steel, which is committed to set up a 3.2-mtpa plant in Dantewada with an investment of Rs 7, 000 crore, has obtained a prospecting licence for deposit number three, which has stocks of about 100 million tonnes.

The leaflets were found just two days after NMDC Chairman-cum-Managing Director B Ramesh Kumar admitted at a press conference in Hyderabad that the company suffered losses of Rs 115 crore in 2006-07 and Rs 90 crore so far in this fiscal due to Maoist attacks on mining facilities in Bailadila hills.

NMDC's annual iron ore production is more than 25 million tonnes, accounting for about 15 per cent of India's iron ore production.

The majority of the country's outputs come from Bailadila deposits. It exports about 9 per cent of its output to Asian nations, mainly China and Japan.

The Maoists had blasted power towers in Dantewada district May 31, halting iron ore production at Bailadila for over a week.

The Maoists also killed eight Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel in February 2006 in an attack at NMDC's explosives store at Bailadila hills. The guerrillas had taken away huge stocks of high-powered explosives that are yet to be recovered.

Two arrested Maoist leaders remanded in police custody

Subhendu Ray

Kolkata, September 6: Two Maoist leaders and two supporters, arrested on Saturday from Jhauboni village, were remanded in police custody on Wednesday. A huge cache of arms was also recovered from them.

Maoist activists, in the guise of members of the Mazdur Krishak Sangram Samiti (MKSS), are involved in a door-to-door campaign to motivate youngsters and strengthening their organisation.

Acting on a tip-off, the district police recently launched a drive and arrested them.

Using sniffer dogs, the police and seized a huge cache of arms, including sophisticated revolvers, two rifles, 13 rounds of ammunition and 10 socket bombs.

Besides, posters, leaflets and banned literature were also seized, Naoda police said.

Following the arrest, police and the district administration have embarked on a concrete game plan to identify the hideouts of Maoists and arrest them, said sources at the district magistrate’s office.

Superintendent of Police, Murshidabad, Rahul Srivastava, said, “This is a rare instance when socket bombs were recovered from them. They usually don’t use socket bombs.”

Reshma Biwi (20), Idris Seikh (28), both self-styled action squad area members, Javeda Biwi and Morful Seikh, who had provided shelter to the leaders, have admitted their links with the Maoists and the People’s War Group, he said.

Reshma and Idris had also agreed to their involvement in murders, extortions, snatching of muskets from cops and setting fire to CPM party office in the district.

A month ago, police had arrested some Maoist activists from the district.

They had informed the police about Reshma and Idris.

Police had made sketches of the two and circulated them to all police stations in the district.

“The Maoists had started their activities in the district long ago but the police was unable to trace them as they called themselves MKSS members. They were arrested as they have recently started providing arms training to people,” said a senior intelligence officer. Their involvement in illegal poppy cultivation has also been detected.

They were entering Murshidabad from Nadia district, the officer said.

Two months ago, a group of people were caught for their involvement in poppy cultivation. Later, they admitted their link with the Maoists, said Srivastava.

Police learnt that Maoists in West Bengal were using land to cultivate poppy and opium for earning a fast buck.

They were reportedly trying to take control of the area by exploiting the poor villagers and were minting money to fund their activities.

Maoists kill four in Jharkhand for taking part in poll

Posted : Fri, 07 Sep 2007 05:47:06 GMT
Author : IANS
Category : Asia (World)

Ranchi, Sep 7 - Maoist rebels killed four people in two villages of Jharkhand's Jamshedpur district apparently because villagers had ignored their boycott call for the recently held by-election, police said Friday.

Around 200 Maoists raided Digha and Chakari village in Jamshedpur, around 170 km from Ranchi, Thursday midnight and abducted seven people and burnt three houses. They later killed four of those kidnapped.

The rebels were unhappy with the villagers as they had dared to cast their votes in the Jamshedpur by-poll Aug 29, despite a boycott call by the guerrillas.

Maoists had in March killed Sunil Mahto, MP from Jamshedpur.

Police officials have rushed to the villages and have begun efforts to nab the rebels. A Special Task Force team has also been dispatched from Ranchi to Jamshedpur to assist the police.

Maoist rebels are active in 16 of Jharkhand's 22 districts. Nearly 950 people including 310 security personnel have been killed in Maoist-related violence in the last seven years.

(c) Indo-Asian News Service

Two killed in Maoist attack in Jharkhand village

Jamshedpur, Sept. 7 (PTI): Maoists shot dead two persons after surrounding Digha village in Jharkhand for defying their diktat to boycott the recent Jamshedpur bypoll.

Two persons, identified as Nimai Murmu Dalpati and Badal Pramanik, were shot dead by the Maoists in Digha village in Ghatsila sub-division yesterday night, police said today.

Around 70 Maoists fired randomly after they assembled in the village and dragged out people from their houses to "punish" them for taking part in the August 29 Jamshedpur Lok Sabha bypoll, the police said.

In a bid to prevent the police from reaching the spot, the Maoists planted a landmine on the only road leading to the village and blocked the route with the branches of trees.

East Singhbhum Superintendent of Police Navin Kumar Singh rushed to the spot after he was informed about the incident and was camping there since last night.

DGP V D Ram also rushed to the village to take stock of the situation today.

The SP said the villagers told him that a couple of villagers were missing since the incident. "However, we have reports that only one villager was missing and we are trying to locate him," he said.

A massive combing operation was launched to track the Maoists who were suspected to have sneaked into adjoining West Bengal, he said.

Earlier, the villagers of Digha and adjoining villages held a meeting and decided to take part in the bypoll despite the Maoist diktat to boycott it.

The UPA backed JMM candidate Suman Mahato, widow of slained JMM MP Sunil Mahato, won the bypoll by a margin of over 58,000 votes.

Sunil Mahato was gunned down by Maoists at Baghuria on March 4 last.

Naxalite in jail after 30 years

Nani Gopal Pal
BALARAMPUR (Purulia), Sept. 6: Hardcore Naxalite, Bir Singh Sardar, alongwith four associates, fled from the Purulia Jail, now referred to as the correctional home. He was charged with the brutal murder of a warden, Ramawakar Singh, in 1978.
Bir Singh Sardar was arrested last week, almost 30 years after the murder, from a forest range at Balarampur in Purulia, near his resident. He was produced in the Purulia court and the chief judicial magistrate, Mr Anand Tewari, sent him to jail custody for 14 days. Of the four culprits, two others were arrested in the Saranga jungle area in Bankura district and they completed their jail terms. They were released earlier. The other two are reportedly absconding. All the five Naxals looted two double barrel guns, killed two government railway police at the Kantadih Rail Station in the Adra division of the South Eastern Railways in 1976. They also murdered two landlords, Fakir Mohanti and Sudhansu Mohanti.
Meanwhile, two liquor shops were burnt down by miscreants at two places at Balarampur in Purulia last week. A section of the police opined that there is no question of the involvement of the Maoists, as the involved culprits were paid to do the act. Another section , however, blamed it on the Maoists.
Meanwhile, the Maoists called two consecutive bandhs in the districts of Bankura, Purulia, Burdwan and West and East Midnapore, including those of Jharkhand, protesting against the atrocities of the police and the CPI-M cadres on the innocent villagers.
People responded well to the bandh in Ranchi and Chandil divisions. The Maoists have also demanded the release of their supporters.
Following the Midnapore (West) incidents, the district police of Purulia have been alerted along the border of Bankura and Jharkhand. Armed forces have been strengthened and asked to keep a close watch.
The district authorities also said that the influence of the Maoists will diminish, when the conditions of the villages are improved. “Public relations between the police and the villagers are now on the rise,” said the SP of Purulia, Mr Ashok Kumar Prosad.

Two Maoists surrender in Nalgonda

Friday, 07 September 2007

Poor Best

Nalgonda, September 07: Two Maoists — Uppalapally Yadaiah alias Ramaswamy alias Obulesh (30) and Kodangi Kalamma alias Srujana (24) — surrendered before the police here on Thursday.

A native of Mukkudujambavigudem in Narayanapur mandal, Yadaiah allegedly took part in the attacks on Mannanur police outpost in Mahabubnagar and Atmakur (M) police station in Nalgonda district, Superintendent of Police Vijay Kumar told reporters.

Kalamma, who joined the Naxalite movement after the murder of her husband, also surrendered before the police.

Dantewada: 3 naxals killed in encounter

Posted at Friday, 07 September 2007 14:09 IST
Dantewada, Sep 7: Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel gunned down three naxalites in an encounter in Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh district today, Sahara Samay sources said.

The gun-battle began after heavily armed naxalites attacked a CRPF convoy in the district early today.

Around 50 armed naxalites attacked the patrol party of CRPF's 51 battalion near Armapur Ghati in Dantewada, the hotbed of naxal violence, at around 9 a.m.

A heavy exchange of fire broke out between the security personnel, led by Commandant H S Thapa, and the naxalites and the operation is continuing, sources said.

"Naxals have fled the scene in the face of heavy firing. We have so far recovered three bodies of the rebels and tiffin bombs and rifles left behind by them. The CRPF personnel are scouring the jungle," the sources added.

It is not immediately known whether there were any casualties on the CRPF side.

It may be recalled that at least 12 policemen were killed as armed Naxalites ambushed a police party in Dantewada on August 29.

Naxals ambush CRPF convoy in Dantewada

Raipur, Sept. 7 (PTI): Heavily armed naxalites attacked a CRPF convoy in Dantewada district early today, triggering a gunbattle between the two sides in which three rebels were killed.

Around 50 armed naxalites attacked the patrol party of CRPF's 51 battalion near Armapur Ghati in Dantewada, the hotbed of naxal violence, at around 9 am, official sources said.

A heavy exchange of fire broke out between the security personnel, led by Commandant H S Thapa, and the naxalites and the operation is continuing, CRPF sources said here.

"Naxals have fled the scene in the face of heavy firing. We have so far recovered three bodies of the rebels and tiffin bombs and rifles left behind by them. The CRPF personnel are scouring the jungle," the sources added.

It is not immediately known whether there were any casualties on the CRPF side.

At least 12 policemen were killed in a naxal ambush in near Balmeta in Dantewada region on August 29.

Naxal violence is on the rise in Chhattisgarh, which has earned the dubious distinction of being the worst-hit both in terms of incidents and casualties.

Lok Sabha condemns attack on Janardhan Reddy

New Delhi, Sept. 7 (PTI): The Lok Sabha today condemned the assassination bid on its member and former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Janardhan Reddy in Nellore, with a concerned Speaker Somnath Chatterjee asking the government to ensure that the culprits are punished.

The issue of naxal attack on Reddy was raised by Parliamentary Affairs Minister P R Dasmunsi, who said the member had a narrow escape in the morning.

Dasmunsi made the mention about the attack when the Opposition was vociferously demanding setting up of Joint Parliamentary Committee to look into the Indo-US nuclear deal.

Taking note of the "serious incident", the Speaker asked the members to join him in condemning the attack.

As the opposition members became calm, Chatterjee said the incident was a matter of concern.

He said the government should take appropriate action and ensure that the culprits are punished.

Reddy and his wife N Rajyalakshmi, a minister in the state government, were travelling in Chitwedu village in Andhra Pradesh when suspected naxals triggered a landmine blast using a remote device.

Reddy and his wife escaped unhurt as their vehicle had just crossed the culvert where the bomb exploded but three Congress workers were killed.

This red is colourless

March 12, 2007
First Published: 02:42 IST(13/3/2007)
Last Updated: 02:45 IST(13/3/2007)

The brutal, daylight murder of JMM MP Sunil Kumar Mahato is another reminder that Naxalites constitute one of the most serious threats to India’s internal security. This threat will not wither away unless the basic structure of the present-day Naxal movement and the nature of the forces sustaining it are fully comprehended and accounted for in the government strategy.

Naxalites are presently much better organised, led and motivated than in 1960s, when they burst like a ‘spring thunder’ in the Naxalbari area of West Bengal. Both in policy and strategy, the movement has undergone a shift. While it has been gaining in strength since the 1990s, the most significant change occurred in September 2004, when the major groups — the Maoist Communist Centre and the People’s War Group — merged to form a united outfit called CPI (Maoist). The programme of the CPI (Maoist) has been christened the New Democratic Revolution, which underlines that the new strategy is one of the protracted armed struggle whose objective is not seizure of land, crops etc., but the seizure of the State power. The unity of various groups, the renewed enthusiasm of the leaders and their recognition of the damage done in the past by faction-fighting and group clashes have pushed the Naxalite movement in a stronger phase.

There is a widespread impression among the rural poor that the economic policies initiated in 1991 are inimical to their interests. This helps Naxalites to enlist more recruits. They have also rapidly transformed themselves into a modern guerrilla force of 25,000 persons. They no longer depend on country-made pistols, but possess sophisticated communication system and weapons — AK 47, grenades, rocket launchers, landmines, etc.

A red corridor, extending from the jungles of north Bihar to Jharkhand, Orissa, Chhattisgarh, Andhra, Maharashtra and Karnataka, is emerging. The objective is to establish a ‘compact revolutionary zone’ in the heart of India and use this to extend the movement to the cities. The ultimate goal is the establishment of a Maoist State. How could this be avoided and the country spared of bloodshed? I will spell out two suggestions, one relating to politics and the other to economy.

Experience has shown that wherever special trained squads have been put in operation over a long period of time, the outcome has been encouraging. But it is unfortunate that the excellent results achieved by Andhra Pradesh’s special units were frittered away during the last Lok Sabha elections on account of petty politics of vote-bank.

The politics has been played earlier too. In 1982, N.T. Rama Rao played it with consummate skill. He called the Naxalites true patriots who had been misunderstood by the ruling classes. M. Chenna Reddy, Congress CM, acted no differently. In 1989, he, too, declared that Naxalites were patriots. When Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu adopted a firm approach against Naxalites, it was Rajasekhar Reddy’s turn to appease them. In other states, too, political parties and leaders have not hesitated to arrive at an understanding with the Naxalites. It is, indeed, unfortunate that short-term political gains are often given precedence over the need for a clear, consistent and firm line. An apolitical and coordinated approach of the central and the state governments, special police units and trained squads are necessary.

On the economic front, a sustained campaign needs to be launched to relieve rural distress. A process of de-ruralisation and simultaneous urbanisation and industrialisation should be initiated. It should be ensured that those who are displaced because of development projects are absorbed in those very projects. Their monetary compensation should be invested in the company in the form of shares with a guaranteed return equivalent to the amount of compensation. This would provide four-fold benefits. First, the risk of compensation money being squandered would be eliminated. Second, the recipient, by virtue of his investment, would develop an interest in the advancement of the company. Third, in the event of failure of the company, the rock-bottom amount would be available to the investors. Fourth, the displaced person would become a skilled person, and if he seizes the opportunity to further upgrade his skills, a brighter future would be opened to him and his family.

It must be understood that the Naxal movement is inherently dangerous. Equally nihilistic is the Naxalites’ attitude towards the idea of India. They advocate the right of so-called nationalities of India to self-determination and secession, knowing well that this could only lead to unending divisions and the ultimate extinction of the Indian entity.
Jagmohan is former Governor of J&K and former Union Minister of Urban Development

Former AP CM, wife survive Naxal attack, 3 killed

Nellore (Andhra Pradesh): Three people were killed and four injured in a bomb blast in Nellore, near the convoy of former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Janardhan Reddy.

Reddy, the former MP from Nellore and wife N Rajyalaxmi, who were travelling together, escaped unhurt in the explosion in Vidyanagar area of Nellore district.

Reddy and Rajyalakshmi, who is the state Women and Child Welfare Minister Rajyalakshmi, were going to Venkateshwara College in Tirupati where the former CM was to receive a doctorate degree.

The bomb was planted in the fourth car in the convoy, which consisted of 20 cars. He missed the car by just two cars.

The attack damaged one of the four cars of the convoy and all those killed are said to have been party workers.

The attack on the Congress leader, who was on the hit list of the naxals, has one again thrown up some disturbing questions about the state security.

In October 2003, former AP Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu had survived an attempt by the People's War (PW) to assassinate him. Naidu had sustained minor injuries when a bomb exploded near his convoy at Ghat Road on the way to the Tirumala temple from Tirupati.

In March 2000, Panchayati Raj Minister A Madhav Reddy was killed in a landmine blast triggered by the PW. He was on the hit list of the PW for his outspokenness on the issue of naxal violence.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

India at 60: More growing pains

After six decades of independence, India is still experiencing growing pains as it strives to put internal strife in check.

By Animesh Roul in New Delhi for ISN Security Watch (06/09/07)

As India celebrates its 60th year of independence with a newfound international status, it battles the proverbial "million mutinies" at home and struggles to move forward. Even though the country made significant strides on the economic front, ranking 69th in global economic freedom index this year - well ahead of 86th-ranked China - growing internal squabbling and lopsided development significantly limits its major global power prospects.

Indeed, far from global aspirations, India's quest for maintaining physical integration has been jeopardized even after decades of self-rule by a prolonged Islamic militancy in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), unabated separatist violence in the northeastern states and Maoist extremism that has exercised increasing dominance over a large swathe of land covering at least 12 states in central and southeastern India.

A more alarming trend in recent years is that Islamic militancy has proliferated beyond the boundaries of J&K. Backed by external forces, it has reached virtually every possible corner of India, targeting government infrastructure, public transport and religious places with impunity.

Strikes and shut downs have been regular features in restive pockets for each national commemoration of Republic Day or Independence Day .Conversely, candlelight vigils by peacemongers along with a high state of alert by security forces have become standard practice in these conflict zones.

Kashmir imbroglio
Since the partitioning of the subcontinent in 1947, India and Pakistan have fought two wars and many skirmishes over Kashmir, with Islamic militants fighting since 1989 for self-determination and, more plausibly, a merger with neighboring Pakistan. The latter has been blamed for instigating militancy and facilitating militant infiltration in Kashmir.

Peace parleys have been initiated by New Delhi and multiple rounds of talks have taken place between two major stakeholders in the conflict - Pakistan and J&K's main political separatist alliance, the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) - to find a lasting solution.

Observers, including APHC leaders, blame New Delhi for overlooking the larger implication of this decade-long conflict and prolonging a concrete resolution unnecessarily.

More than a year has passed since the latest round of Kashmir talks were held in May 2006 between the Indian government and the APHC's moderate faction led by chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq in Delhi.

"I don't think […] New Delhi is much interested as the approach has always been to delay as much as possible, " Mirwaiz Farooq was quoted by Reuters news service as saying recently, questioning New Delhi's intention to find a political solution to the problems. Farooq said the delay could beget "more extremism" and a "hard-line attitude among the new generation" even though the current trend showed that the terrorist related violence in Kashmir was on the decline.

Lt Gen (Ret) Shankar Prasad thinks otherwise. "New Delhi has never ignored the 'K' word [Kashmir] and it can't afford to do that as this is the biggest internal security threat the country is facing still, more than anything else," Prasad told ISN Security Watch.

He further added that the "steadiness apparent in the government's approach should not be blamed as an intentional slow down" as there are other pressing internal issues to which the government must give equal attention.

The conflict has killed more than 42,000 people and displaced thousands displaced more in the last 17 years.

Northeast travails
Nagaland ,Manipur and Assam remain violence-prone states in India's northeast, with factional, internecine and xenophobic killings featuring regularly, impeding the region's overall development. Extortion and abduction for ransom top the agenda among militant groups operating in these states. Civilians bear the brunt of the violence and destruction.

In Nagaland, efforts have been underway to bring two warring Naga militant outfits together. The Indian government is currently observing a truce with both groups and is in talks with one, the National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Isak-Muivah (NSCN-IM).

Manipur is also plagued by unrelenting violence, with over 12 active militant groups leading separatist agendas.

As for Assam, one estimate suggests that the area has witnessed more civilian casualties this year due to militancy than even restive J&K. The latest figures from the Home Affairs Office show that there were 219 civilian casualties in Assam as of 15 August - a staggering increase from the 173 casualties recorded in 2005 and 164 in 2006 for the same time period.

In northeast India, the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) is blamed for perpetrating targeted attacks against Hindi-speaking, non-indigenous migrant workers with a lesserknown outfit, the Karbi Longri National Liberation Front (KLNLF). A week-long ULFA-triggered violence spree spread across Sibsagar, Tinsukia, Dibrugarh and Dhemaji districts of the state in early January this year, claiming over 70 lives.

Again in August this year militants engaged in a killing spree leaving over 25 Hindi-speaking people dead in Karbi Anglong district. The fear of backlash looms large, and these systematic killings have triggered a mass exodus from the state.

In the wake of the latest killings, the Indian government made plans to arm Hindi-speaking people for self protection against militants.

Explaining the separatist violence in these states and its larger implications, Dr Sanjib Baruah, visiting professor at the Delhi-based Center for Policy Research, is critical of the government's plans.

"Healthy states should not resort to subcontracting of security," Baruah told ISN Security Watch, though this is not a new phenomenon for the northeast. Citing examples of Sudan's brutal government-backed janjaweed militia, he feared that "this way of responding to the [internal] security challenge will have profoundly negative consequences for the legitimacy of governmental institutions in the region."

However, Baruah, author of Post-frontier Blues: Toward a New Policy Framework for Northeast India (East-West Center, 2007), warns: "If [we] don't address the roots of the problems such as land alienation and a overwhelming sense of 'minoritization' by small ethnic groups […], the political instability of Northeast India would only continue into the distant future."

On the larger security implication, Baruah says that the persistence of conflicts such as Naga and Assam reflects failed policies and an unwillingness to hold anyone accountable.

Maoist maze
Maoist violence has been acute in Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Andhra Pradesh. Chattisgarh, arguably the most violent state after J&K, has witnessed many attacks against civilians, security forces and political figures in the face of a controversial government strategy of arming the local tribes in the name of peace.

A report released by India's Home Minister to the Upper House of parliament this month indicated that Maoists have killed as many as 129 politicians and 411 government officials during the last three years.

Even Indian Prime Minster Mamohan Singh conceded in a speech last year that horizontally spreading left-wing Maoist violence was the single greatest internal security challenge, accounting for almost 30 percent of total militant-caused fatalities in India in 2006.

Terming the left-wing violence a matter of "grave concern," Dr Nihar Nayak, researcher at a Delhi-based government funded think tank, blamed "the lack of coordination between the affected states and the [...] government" for the allowing militant Maoism to flourish in India.

"[There has been] an ideological degeneration afflicting the so-called movement in recent years and criminalization [of the whole movement] has affected peace and prosperity in the Maoist infested regions," Nayak told ISN Security Watch.

Critical of the Home Ministry's annual reports - which declare the level of violence as "largely-under-control " - Nayak summed up India's internal security struggle against multi-pronged problem as half-hearted and insufficient.

"Again, levels of violence do not change fundamental realities on the ground," he concluded, "even after 60 years of freedom."

Animesh Roul is a New Delhi-based correspondent and analyst for ISN Security Watch.


16:54 IST
Lok Sabha

An estimated loss of approximately Rs.3,89,05,000/- to the railway property has been reported during 24 hours ‘Economic Blockade’ called by the Maoists on June 24, 2007.

Maoists reportedly blasted explosive at two placed in Dhanbad Division of East Central Railways (between Barwadih-Mangra stations and between Chetar-Richughuta stations) causing damage to the railway track. Two electric locos with 22 empty wagons of goods train derailed causing damage to overhead electrical fittings.

Following incident of damages to railway property by Naxalites/Maoists have been reported during 2006-07:-

1. On 25.04 2006, 100/150 extremists equipped with arms arrived at Railway Cabin of Narganjo Railway Station in Asansol – Jhajha Section of Asansol Division over Eastern Railway, kidnapped railway employees, draggad them towards the jungle and placed bomb on track at kilometer number 357/21-22. They blew up the railway cabin of Narganjo railway station.

2. On 26.04.2006, Maoists exploded one land mine at kilometer number 364/1-2 between Dashratpur and Jamalpur railway stations in Malda division over Eastern Railway and badly damaged railway track.

3. On 19.05.2006, Maoists removed 02 rail pieces (26 metre length) from the running track over East Coat Railway, while the down train number KVL-35/25 with 53 wagons loaded with Iron ore was passing through Bansi – Kamalur stations. It led to derailment of all the 03 Electric Locos and capsizement of seven loaded wagons. No loss to human life was reported. Loss to railway property has been estimated at Rupees 1,65,32,000/-

4. On 14.08.2006, overhead equipment and signal and telecommunication failed in between Kamalur – Bhansi stations over East Coast Railway because two huge trees were cut and placed on the track by the Maoists. No loss to human life was reported. Loss to railway property is estimated at Rupees 72,000/-.

5. On 08.10.2006, two rails were removed from running track and one explosive device was planted by Maoists at kilometer number 442/22-23 over East Coast Railway resulting into derailment of goods train and damage of track. No loss to human life was reported. Loss to railway property is estimated at Rupees 1,08,54,939/-.

6. On 15.10.2006, 50/60 Maoists set on fire three locos of train No. NKKC-470 over South Eastern Railway.

7. On 30.10.2006, Maoists removed two rails from running track at kilometer number 417/8 over East Coast Railway, resulting in derailment of goods train and damage of track. No loss to human life was reported. Loss to railway property is estimated at Rupees 2,24,15,942/-.

8. On 06.12.2006, a group of armed Naxalites set fire to an engine between Darakasa –Batalao Railway Stations of Nagpur Division of South East Central Railway in Maharashtra State. No loss of human life. Loss to railway property has been estimated at Rupees 20,000/-.

9. On 10.12.2006, 25/30 armed Naxalites attacked Railway Protection Force Cash escorting party in train No. 346-Down Tata-Kadakpur passenger over South Eastern Railway and snatched two .303 Rifles and 30 rounds causing serious bleeding injuries to two on duty Railway Protection Force staff.

Following measures are being taken to make the Rail journey safe & comfortable:-

* Through escorting important Mail/Express trains by Railway Protection

* Force/Government Railway Police personnel.

* By procuring Modern security gadgets.

* By close and effective supervision of the staff.

* By augmenting Manpower.

* By strengthening the Dog Squads.

* By holding regular co-ordination meetings with Government Railway Police/Civil Police /Intelligence Agencies.

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri R.Velu in written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha today.

Now, STF headed by Col to combat terror

6 Sep 2007, 0151 hrs IST,Amitabh Tiwari,TNN

RAIPUR: Frustrated by repeated attacks on an ill-trained and ill-equipped police force, Chhattisgarh is set to roll out the heavy artillery against Naxals. The state government has constituted a Special Task Force (STF), on the lines of Andhra Pradesh's Greyhounds, headed by an Army officer.

DGP Chhattisgarh Vishwaranjan said around 4,000 crack personnel will be deployed with the STF. "The STF personnel will be provided with commando training and advanced weapons to launch an offensive against Maoist extremists inside the dense jungles. These highly-trained security personnel will be able to launch attacks against rebels," he said.

"A serving officer of the rank of colonel, Rajnish Sharma, has been selected to command the STF. He will shortly resign from the Army and join Chhattisgarh Police," the state police chief added. Sharma will have the rank of DIG.

The government is picking STF personnel from the existing police force. About 1,300 officers of the age group of 18-25 years have already been selected. The STF men are to be trained at the jungle warfare school at Kanker.

The decision to constitute the STF, is the latest attempt on the part of the Raman Singh government to tackle Maoist rebels who have hit the police and the rag-tag civil defence unit called Salva Judum almost at will.

Small traders flee from Jharkhand's Maoist heartland

From our ANI Correspondent

Pirtand (Jharkhand), Sept. 6: Several small businessmen and traders have reportedly fled from Jharkhand's Maoist heartland, fearing for their lives.

Concrete houses in Khukhra village in Giridih district have been locked.

According to the villagers, the Maoists used to extort money from these people and had accused some of them of being police informers. They ordered them to leave the place or be eliminated.

The police say that the shortage of personnel is posing problems in dealing with the Maoists.

"The movement to take on naxal is going on at the state level. They manage to survive and carry their operation because they know there is a shortage of security personnel," claimed Arun Kumar Singh, Superintendent of Police, Giridih.

Jharkhand is one of the 13 Indian states hit by the Maoist insurgency that began more than three decades ago.

According to Home ministry, 76 districts in Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Bihar, Maharashtra, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh,Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal are 'badly affected by Maoist violence'.


Who are Naxalites

Thursday, September 06, 2007 12:32:18 IST
What they are and what they do. CHARUL SHAH takes us into the grim world of Naxalites

The Naxalites, also sometimes called the Naxals, is a loose term used to define groups of people, waging a violent struggle on behalf of landless labourers and tribal people against landlords and others. The Naxalites say they are fighting oppression and exploitation to create a classless society. Their opponents say the Naxalites are terrorists oppressing people in the name of a class war.
The Naxalites claim to represent the most oppressed people in India, those who are often left untouched by India’s development and bypassed by the electoral process. Invariably, they are the Adivasis, Dalits, and the poorest of the poor, who work as landless labourers for a pittance, often below India’s mandated minimum wages.
The most prominent area of operation is a broad swathe across the very heartland of India, often considered the least developed area of this country. The Naxalites operate mostly in the rural and Adivasi areas, often out of the continuous jungles in these regions. Their operations are most prominent in (from North to South) Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, eastern Maharashtra, the Telangana (north-western) region of Andhra Pradesh, and western Orissa. It will be seen that these areas are all inland, from the coastline.

The criticism against Naxalites is that despite their ideology, they have gradually become just another terrorist outfit, extorting money from middle-level landowners (since rich landowners invariably buy protection), and worse, even extorting and dominating the lives of the adivasis and villagers who they claim to represent in the name of providing justice.

The earliest manifestation of the movement was the Telengana Struggle in July 1948 (100 years after the Paris Communes were first set up, coining the word Communist). This struggle was based on the ideology of China’s Mao Zedong, with the aim of creating an Indian revolution. Not surprisingly, the ideology remains strong in this region of Andhra Pradesh.

The Naxalite movement took shape after some members of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) split to form the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist), after the former agreed to participate in elections and form a coalition government in West Bengal. Charu Mazumdar led the split. The peasant uprising against the oppressor landlords was organised and led by Charu Mazumdar, Kanu Sanyal and Jangal Santhal. Mazumdar was the chief ideologue of what has been described as the first authentic Maoist phenomenon in India.

The Naxalite movement takes its name from a peasant uprising, which took place in May 25 1967 at Naxalbari – a place on the north-eastern tip of India situated in the state of West Bengal. A section of the CPI (M) leaders and cadres having disagreement with the politics pursued by the party magnified the movement. It started with a movement on the demand for recovery of benami land, that is, land held under false names unlawfully and distribution of the same to the landless and poor peasants. At that time, the First United Front Government of which the SUCI was a constituent was in power in West Bengal. Under the leadership of their ideologue, a 49-year old Communist, Charu Mazumdar, they defined the objective of the new movement as ‘seizure of power through an agrarian revolution’. The strategy was the elimination of the feudal order in the Indian countryside to free the poor from the clutches of the oppressive landlords.

How do they operate?

Naxalism has survived in India since the late sixties in one form or the other. In the early seventies it had gripped Calcutta city and a reign of terror had prevailed. Much blood was shed before it was firmly crushed, just before the Bangladesh (liberation) war. However, the movement survived on Mao’s tactics- “Retreat when the enemy attacks, rest and regroup when the enemy is strong and attack when the enemy rests”. Thus while they retreated in West Bengal, they gained strength in Andhra and Bihar and grew roots in Orissa, Maharashtra and in the new states of Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand. They have established Regional Bureaus in all the southern states as well as in U.P, Delhi and Haryana. They aim at crippling the economic centres, the political and technological centres, the minerally rich pockets and at overthrowing the established system of governance. The professed aims and objectives as well as the means are similar to that of any extremist organisation. The Naxalites feed on neglect and ignorance, and the only means to counter them is through knowledge, action and constant vigil.
In the whole organisation structure, one can find a clear distinction between the political and military wings of the outfit.

The administration:
On the political side, the organisational hierarchy consists of the Central Committee at the top, and then follows Regional Bureaus, Zonal or State Committees, District or Division Committees and Squad Area Committees respectively. Apart from that bellow the Central Committee there is a polite bureau, which consist 13 members and they are the people who make policy decisions.

The armed force:

The military functions under a single operational command, the Central Military Commission. In the Indian State where it has a presence, there is a State Military Commission and in special guerrilla zones, there is a Zonal Military Commission. A Regional Military Commission supervises a group of State Military Commissions or Zonal Military Commissions. Each Regional Military Commission reports to the Central Military Commission.

Active groups

Maoist Communist Centre (MCC)

The outfit came into existence, in its earlier version, on October 20, 1969, as Dakshin Desh. When the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) was formed with the merger of several Maoist groups in 1969, one left-wing extremist group, Dakshin Desh, did not join and decided to retain its independent identity. In 1975, the outfit was renamed as the Maoist Communist Centre (MCC). Like other left wing extremist groups, the purported objective of the MCC is to establish a ‘people’s government’ through ‘people’s war’. It traces its ideology to the Chinese Communist leader Mao Tse Tung’s dictum of organised peasant insurrection.

People’s War Group (PWG)

The People’s War Group was formed in Southern Indian State of Andhra Pradesh on April 22, 1980 by Kondapalli Seetharamaiah, one of the most influential Naxalite leaders in the State and a member of the erstwhile Central Organising Committee of the Communist Party of India––Marxist-Leninist, (CPI-ML). The PWG’s operations commenced in Karimnagar district, in the North Telengana region of Andhra Pradesh, and subsequently spread to other parts of the State as well as in other States. The PWG traces its ideology to the Chinese leader Mao Tse Tung’s theory of organised peasant insurrection. It rejects parliamentary democracy and believes in capturing political power through protracted armed struggle based on guerrilla warfare. This strategy entails building up of bases in rural and remote areas and transforming them first into guerrilla zones and then as liberated zones, besides the area-wise seizure and encircling cities. The eventual objective is to install a “people’s government” through the “people’s war”. In short, as the PWG claims, it wishes to usher in a New Democratic revolution (NDR).

People’s Guerrilla Army

The military wing of the People’s War Group (PWG), the People’s Guerrilla Army (PGA) was reportedly founded on December 2, 2000 in Bihar and Jharkhand and a month later, on January 2, 2001, in Andhra Pradesh, somewhere in dense Dandakaranya forests in the North Telengana Region, by reorganising its guerrilla force.

Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist)The Maoist Communist Centre of India (MCC) and the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) People’s War (also known as the People’s War Group or PWG) merged to form a new entity, the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) on September 21, 2004, somewhere in the projected ‘liberated zone’. Officially, the merger was announced on October 14, 2004, by the PWG Andhra Pradesh ‘state secretary’, Ramakrishna, at a news conference in Hyderabad, on the eve of peace talks between the PWG and the State Government.

The CPI-Maoist intends to carry on the new “democratic revolution, which would remain directed against imperialism, feudalism and comprador bureaucratic capitalism.” The new party believes that the merger would cause “fear among the ruling classes” and would fulfil “the aspirations of the masses” for a strong revolutionary party that would usher in a “new democratic society” by advancing towards socialism and communism.

Communist Party of India (Marxist Leninist) Janashakti Communist Party of India (Marxist Leninist) Janashakti or CPI (ML) Janashakti was formed on July 30, 1992 with the merger of seven communist groups. The seven groups were the CPI (ML) Resistance, one faction of the Unity Centre of Communist Revolutionaries of India (Marxist-Leninist), CPI (ML) Agami Yug, Paila Vasudev Rao’s CPI (ML), CPI (ML) [Khokan Majumdar Faction], Coordination Committee of Communist Revolutionaries (CCCR) and Communist Revolutionary Group for Unity (CRGU).

Maharashtra Foot prints:

According to the State Government, out of the 35 districts, Gadchiroli, Chandrapur, Bhandara, Gondia, Yavatmal and Nanded have been described as ‘Naxalite-prone’. All the six affected districts are located in the eastern belt of the State, lie contiguous with the Maoist-affected districts of Adilabad, Karimnagar and Nizamabad in Andhra Pradesh, Rajnandgaon, Bastar, Kanker and Dantewada in Chhattisgarh, and Balaghat in the State of Madhya Pradesh. Apart from such close proximity that has triggered a spillover effect in Maharashtra, the topography and the sheer economic backwardness of these districts have provided a fertile ground for Maoist operations. Fifteen Maoist dalams (squads) reportedly operate in Maharashtra.
The Union Ministry of Home Affairs Annual Report 2004-2005 notes: “In Maharashtra, while the level of Naxal violence increased by 15 per cent during 2004 as compared to 2003, the CPI ML-PW (Communist Party of India - Marxist Leninist - People’s War) continued to dominate the forest and mountainous tracts of Gadchiroli and Gondia Districts and made efforts to extend its influence to the districts of Chandrapur and Yavatmal.” Seven fatalities in Naxalite violence were recorded by the MHA Report in 2001; 29 in 2002; 31 in 2003; and 15 in 2004 (incidents of Naxalite related violence, however, rose from 75 in 2003 to 84 in 2004). In 2005, according to the Institute for Conflict Management database, 21 persons, including 15 SF personnel, 4 Maoists, and 2 civilians have died.

Three stages of revolution

According to the first scenario, Maoists would be strong in their traditional areas and government would make sure that they do not spread their influence to other places. Regular battles between Maoists and police forces would take place just like today. Mostly the Maoists would have great influence in three states: Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, and pockets of influence in other states.
In this kind of scenario, the Maoists would consolidate their hold in the newly acquired regions and may expand into new areas. Inevitably, the armed forces have to be used to tackle this problem. This would weaken the nation on the external front. Instead of taking advantage of the economic opportunities, India would be busy fighting for its stability. The most important cause for this scenario would be the neglect of the government(s) in creating nation wide
strategy to tackle Maoists. The current scenario is that we still do not know much about them and to some extend it is being neglected by the government.


Ideologically, the Naxalites claim they are against India, as she exists currently. They believe that Indians are still to acquire freedom from hunger and deprivation and that the rich classes —landlords, industrialists, traders, etc — control the means of production. Their final aim is the overthrow of the present system, hence the targeting of politicians, police officers and men, forest contractors, etc. They strongly believe that the power will only flow from the battle of guns.
To achieve their goals, the Naxalites have invariably targeted landlords in the villages, often claiming protection money from them. Naxalites have also been known to claim ‘tax’ from the Adivasis and landless farmers in areas where their writ runs more than that of the government.

What started as a movement questioning and protesting against inequality and disparity has slowly degenerated into one surviving on extortion, torture and ill gotten wealth. Till date all the naxal victims have been police personnel, forest guards and in large numbers, the impoverished tribals. None of the contractors, businessmen or moneylenders have been targeted. The naxals have opposed roads, bridges and other public works in the villages saying that it would benefit the police more by providing access. They discourage the local boys from studying beyond class 9 and insist that each family sends one boy and one girl to join the dalam.

Naxalism In Maharashtra
The naxalite problem originated in Maharashtra when the Peoples War Group (PWG) from Andhra Pradesh entered bordering Sironcha taluka in the then Chandrapur (it is presently with the Gadchiroli district which was carved out of Chandrapur in 1983) district in 1980.The naxals played up the local grievances and exhorted the people to join the “Nav Janvadi Kranti”. They appealed to the people and exhorted them through song and dance groups termed as Jan Natya Mandals. Soon armed dalams appeared. With their Olive green uniform and their guns, they attracted some of the local youth to joining them.

There were voices of protest and one of the first acts of the armed dalam was to cut off the hand of Raju Master, a local school teacher for opposing them. Raju master was not killed so that he would serve as a living reminder of naxal brutality and terror .Till date the naxals have been using this method to spread fear and to procure recruits from the local populace.
At present, two districts, viz Gadchiroli and Gondia are declared completely naxal affected while parts of Chandrapur and Bhandara are also declared affected. As of date 17 dalams are active in Gadchiroli, 3 in Gondia and 3 in Chandrapur.The districts of Nanded, Yavatmal etc have their presence while Thane, Nandurbar and Nasik have their influence. Regular meetings by the overground support organizations are held in each of these districts as well as in Nagpur, Pune and Mumbai.
The ultimate aim of naxalism is to gain power through the barrel of the gun. Their desired centres of power in Maharashtra are not Gadchiroli and Gondia, but the big cities of Mumbai and Pune. The groundwork for this is being done with the naxal supporter and sympathizer, balladeer Gadar holding meetings among the slum dwellers of Pune. The topic for the meeting was the Khairlanji (caste) killings in distant Bhandara!.

Government Action

In Maharashtra a two pronged strategy of Police Action and Development has been used to counter naxalism. The State has a Surrender Policy which also entails a Rehabilitation Program. Public Contact programs like Jan Jagaran Melawas and Gram Bhets are held by the Police, village to village to create awareness among the population. These programs are participated in by the different Govt. Departments so that in effect governance moves closer to the masses. The State Government is also giving Rs.3 Lakh to each village in the affected area which declares Naxal Gaon Bandi, a kind of declared non-cooperation with the naxals. As a result Maharashtra has succeeded in curbing the spread of at least the violent part of the movement beyond the border districts of Gadchiroli and Gondia though the naxal movement here had started almost at the same time as it had begun in Andhra before encompassing almost ninety percent of that state.

129 elected representatives victims of Naxals in '04-06

6 Sep 2007, 0156 hrs IST,TNN

NEW DELHI: Naxalites have killed as many as 129 people's representatives and 411 government officials - mostly policemen - between 2004 and 2006.

Almost all the people's representatives, except Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader Sunil Mahto, killed by Maoists during the period represented village, block and district-level groups. The figures, released in Rajya Sabha on Wednesday, clearly show that these representatives are as vulnerable as the civilian population mainly in tribal areas.

Minister of State for Home Affairs Sriprakash Jaiswal, in his written reply to a question, informed the Upper House that 20 people's representatives were killed by Naxalites in 31 attacks in 2006 as compared to 64 in 111 attacks in 2005 and 45 in 114 attacks in 2004.

But figure for government officials (mainly security personnel) killed was the highest in 2006 - 158. In 2005, 153 officials were killed by Maoists while the figure for 2004 was 100.

JMM leader Sunil Mahto, killed during a football match in a village near Jamshedpur in Jharkhand in March this year, was, incidentally, the lone MP who became a victim of the red ultras.

In response to another question, the minister said that a total 1,608 incidents of Naxalite violence were reported from 460 police stations in 11 states in 2005. The figure in 2006 dipped slightly to 1,509 incidents which were reported from 395 police stations that constituted 4.65% of the total number of 8,488 police stations in the affected states.

Naxalites escape from police net

Bangalore, Sept. 5 (PTI): A four member gang, suspected to be Maoists, escaped minutes before an Anti-Naxal Force team raided a house in which they were hiding early today in a village in Chikmagalur district of the state.

Acting on a tip-off that the gang, which had three women members, had taken shelter in the house of one Marappa in the village near Mudigere, the ANF surrounded the house.

However, the Naxals fled as the team raided the house, ADGP Shankar Bidari told PTI here.

The ANF has intensified search in the forest area to nab the gang members, he said.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Six Naxalites arrested in Bihar

Gaya, Sept. 4 (PTI): Six members of the banned Naxalite group CPI-Maoist were today arrested from Barauna village in rebel-hit Gaya district of Bihar.

SP Amit Jain said the police raided the village on a specific information and arrested the militants.

Those arrested were wanted by the police for their involvement in several cases including one related to the burning of a tractor of self-styled Ranvir Sena commander Ajgaibi Sharma, Jain said.

Naxals kill former police patil

Naxals kill former police patil
5 Sep 2007, 0244 hrs IST,TNN

GADCHIROLI: Ahead of chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh’s visit, a group of Naxals allegedly killed a former police patil of Dhanora tehsil on Monday morning.

According to police sources, about 25 armed Naxals belonging to Chandgaon Dalam headed by commander Ranjita came to Gurgapur village on Sunday night. The Naxals then approached former police patil Maniram Madavi’s house and took him away on the pretext of convening a meeting. Then they allegedly slit his throat suspecting him to be a police informer.

A police patil is a link between the government and the public at the village level and performs security-related jobs. However, they are not government employees and are only paid monthly honorarium. A case has been registered at the Pendhari police station in this regard and the combing operation in the area has been intensified. Meanwhile, security arrangements have been beefed up in view of chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh’s visit.

129 politicians, 411 officials killed by Naxals in 3 years

129 politicians, 411 officials killed by Naxals in 3 years

Naxalites manage to escape police net

Bangalore, Sept. 5 (PTI): A four-member naxalite group managed to escape from a house after the Anti-Naxal Force team raided it in a village near Mudigere in Chikmagalur district of Karnataka in the wee hours of today, police said.

On information that the gang, which had three women members, had taken shelter in the house of one Marappa, the ANF surrounded the house, ADGP Shankar Bidari told PTI here.

However, when the team managed to gain entry into the house, it found that the gang had already fled.

The ANF has intensified search in the forest area for the naxalites, he said.

Naxal dumps found in EG, Guntur districts

Wednesday September 5 2007 12:47 IST
Express News Service

KAKINADA: Special party police unearthed a Naxal dump in which a huge quantity of machinery used to manufacture and repair for weapons were recovered. Disclosing this to mediapersons here on Tuesday, Superintendent of Police B Sreenivasulu said the police recovered a drilling machine, seven bench vices, three hack saw frames, a gas cutter, a cylinder and a regulator, 10 kg of gas welding powder, electric wires, switches, holders and bulbs, a solar lamp, an HP motor, a few empty iron grenades and clipping bombs, fuse wire, some medicines and other material from the dump.

Police suspect that the material was hidden by the technical committee of AOB two years ago under Donkarayi police station limits in Y Ramavaram mandal of Rampachodavaram division. A case has been registered and investigation is on, said the SP.

OSD V Satyanarayana and Rampachodavaram DSP PHD Ramakrishna were present.

IN GUNTUR DIST: Special party police stumbled upon a Maoist dump in the reserve forests bordering Bollapalli within the limits of Bandlamotu police station on Monday, according to Superintendent of Police Mahesh Chandra Ladda.

The SP said the special police party, led by OSD M Ravi Prakash, recovered from the dump a .303 rifle, 12 bore tapanchas, a small pistol, a .38 revolver, a pistol with magazine, a landmine, claymore mine, 20 kg of explosive materials, two grenades, 15 electrical detonators, 100 non-electrical detonators, 102 DBR rounds, 52 7.63 rounds, Motorola manpacks, binoculars, spare magazines and three olive green uniforms. The SP said that the recovered mines and explosive materials were powerful and were intended to target the police parties involved on combing operations.