Saturday, January 26, 2008

Constable rapes 10-year-old, tribals protest

26 Jan 2008, 0259 hrs IST,Law Kumar Mishra,TNN

GIRIDIH: A 10-year-old tribal girl was raped by a cop in a remote village of Giridih districtin Jharkhand leading to protests by hundreds of tribals armed with bows and arrows at a police station. Arvind Kumar, 24, was arrested on Friday and district police chief M L Meena said he would be dismissed from service. The cops were in the village for an anti-Maoist operation.

According to the girl's elder brother, his sister had gone from their village Ganhar to collect firewood at Chandwa, 17 km from Giridih, along with her six-year-old brother when three policemen approached them. "Two of the policemen kept my brother in their custody while the other cop took my sister to the nearby jungle," he said in a complaint to the police. The girl's father had died a few years ago.

He said the three cops later gave Rs 500 to his younger brother and told him not to disclose the incident. When the girl didn't return home even after several hours, her mother went to the jungle with her neighbours and found the girl unconscious

Top Maoist Sambasivudu arrested ?

Updated: 01-26-2008

HYDERABAD : The special police arrested state Maoist secretary Sambasivudu and his colleague Kudumal Ravi from the Andhra-Orissa border late on Thursday night, according to reliable sources.

sadf Sources said Sambasivudu and Ravi were training locals along with Guthi Koya tribals brought from the Dantewada region of Chhattisgarh when they were surrounded by Greyhounds personnel and arrested. About 40 tribals escaped into the forests.

The Vizag superintendent of police, Akun Sabharwal, refused to confirm any arrest of Maoists during last couple of days. Earlier in Hyderabad, the State Human Rights Commission asked for a report on the reported arrest of Sambasivudu.

The commission told the director-general of police, S.S.P. Yadav, to submit the report by 9 am on January 26. Lakshmamma, the mother of Sambasivudu, had approached the commission chairperson, Justice B. Subhashan Reddy, on Friday stating that her son had been arrested on January 20 and that his life was under threat.

Maoists gun down three in Andhra

Press Trust Of India

Hyderabad, January 26, 2008
First Published: 12:43 IST(26/1/2008)
Last Updated: 12:46 IST(26/1/2008)

Maoist guerrillas in Andhra Pradesh gunned down three people early on Saturday accusing them of being police spies.

The attack took place in Borlagunda village in Karimnagar district, about 250 km from here.

According to the police, a group of 15 guerrillas from the Communist Party of India-Maoist entered the village around 2 am, picked up the three from their homes and gunned them down after branding them "police informers".

The three had been associated with the Maoist outfit in the past.

Karimnagar in Telangana region was once a stronghold of the Maoists. But the outfit has suffered several setbacks there in recent years.

Maoist violence in the state has claimed more than 6,000 lives in the last four decades. The police have achieved many successes in anti-Maoist operations in the last two years.

Maoist violence registered a 42 per cent decline in 2007 compared to 2006.

Chhattisgarh Police recover uniform material meant for 300 Naxalites

January 26th, 2008 - 7:43 pm

Raipur, Jan 26 (ANI): Chhattisgarh Police have conducted raids in Raipur during which they have recovered yarn that was purportedly stored to make uniforms for at least 300 Naxalites.

Acting on an intelligence tip-off, a police team raided the houses and shops of two tailors - Dayaram Sahu and Ashok Devang - who have been stitching uniforms for the rebels for several years.

During the investigation, they (Naxalites) informed us about the uniforms sewed by them in Raipur. On that basis we have conducted raids at their houses and shops. We have seized over 300 uniforms and the cloth that had to be used for stitching uniforms, Raipur Superintendent of Police Amit Kumar said.

Kumar further said that the accused have been taken into custody and were being interrogated. (ANI)

Centre must take action against CPM

By M.V. Kamath

The CPM has been and continues to be wedded to violence and anti-national behaviour. During the 1942 Quit India movement, it sided with the British. In 1962 when China invaded India, the CPM sided with China and betrayed Indian interests. The CPM is a party of traitors.

Here’s a question to Sonia Gandhi, Dr Manmohan Singh and Shivraj Patil:

What on earth is happening in West Bengal?
Is the government there not responsible to the Centre?
Can the CPM-led Leftist government allow an independent—and armed—party cadre to enforce its aims on the people? Is that legal?
Do our UPA (Congress) leaders understand the implications of such behaviour?

The people of Nandigram protest against the State when it sets out to confiscate their land for the purpose of setting up a Special Economic Zone(SEZ). The land is their only source of income. Understandably they offer resistance to the government move.

The views of the people should have been respected. Instead cadres of the CPM—their appropriate designation would be ‘goondas’—over 300-strong, with the open connivance of the police go all out to suppress the democratic rights of the Nandigram residents. Such a thing has never happened before. As D.Bandopadhyaya, a former Executive Director of the Asian Development Bank has noted “thirty years of One-Party rule has resulted in the total subversion of impartiality of the bureaucracy and the police”. As Nitin Raut, an eminent lawyer, writing in Freedom First (November 2007) said, and quite rightly, “the CPM and its Left allies knew that its unconstitutional politburo dictate can be enforced brutally with impunity and without any fear of action by the Central Government”. Scores of villagers were killed by CPM goons to the point that the Governor of West Bengal, Gopalkrishna Gandhi, felt compelled to raise his voice of dissent.

But the UPA remains unmoved. The excuse is that law and order is constitutionally under the state government and the Centre cannot intervene. It is time the Constitution is revised. But the truth is that the Congress-led UPA government is scared that it will be thrown out of power if the CPM withdraws its support. This is the height of abject cowardice and the nation as a whole must protest against the UPA’s silence. To say that law and order is a state subject beyond the pale of the Union Government does not permit a state government to have an alternate and illegal armed force to enforce its dictat. If this is not understood, the time may come when in other states parties may raise their own armies to enforce their will, whether they are in power or not. This is inviting chaos and division of the country. This is not permissible.

The Central Government may be silent but the media—at least the intellectuals among the media—seems to have woken up to the situation. Writing in Mainstream(November 30, 2007) Neerja Chowdhury noted that in Nandigram “the CPM cadres led armed goons to recapture villages, kill innocent people, burn their houses and gang rape women”. The Government had withdrawn the police from the area on October 27 and by the time the CRPF arrived, the clean-up operation had been completed. The state colluded with the gangsters to teach “the other side” a lesson. The Chief Minister, Buddhadev Bhattacharya even openly defended the violence of the goons as ‘morally legal and justified”. Again, the excuse was that Maoists had taken Nandigram and it had become necessary to expel them.

It is open to question why the CRPF was not summoned earlier to do the job. Should it have been allotted to Marxist goons? If this action goes unchallenged, the consequences could be frightening. In the first place Maoism was originally a creation of the CPM itself. Let it be clearly understood: the CPM has been and continues to be wedded to violence and anti-national behaviour. During the 1942 Quit India movement, it sided with the British. In 1962 when China invaded India, the CPM sided with China and betrayed Indian interests. The CPM is a party of traitors. It was D.T. Ranadive who introduced violence in Telangana and it is the CPM which used terrorism to cow down landlords in West Bengal. Who, one might well ask, were the Naxalites? The Centre has to take action against the CPM and against the Basus and Karats. Being in power in West Bengal does not give its violence, administrative legitimacy. If the Centre remains quiescent, it would set up a bad precedent, with what consequences in the future, it is hard to predict.

Every political party might feel free to set up an independent army of its own—with the CPM cadres as model. If Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh do not understand this simple fact, they understand nothing. What has been sickening to watch is the absolute collapse of the constitutional machinery—and the deafening silence in Delhi. The government has not said a word to condemn the CPM-led brutality against innocent people. Stalin killed millions of agriculturists in the thirties; Nandigram is a repeat performance. Not a single Congress leader has dared to visit Nandigram as if it is not the UPA’s business to see that constitutional proprieties are honoured. It is pure and simple cowardice. If a state government takes recourse to non-governmental forces to maintain ‘law and order’ and is not condemned, it may prove to be the beginning of the collapse of the nation as a whole. This should be made into an election issue. The matter is too serious to be ignored. We cannot afford to have a chalet hai government at the Centre.

What happened in Nandigram can happen in other states as well, especially in states like Bihar, Orissa and Jharkhand. Private armes will inevitably come into existence and the nation will slip into the pre-1857 era with the country breaking into pieces. The time to take action is now. And the BJP must make this into a major election issue just as Bofors once become a major issue leading to the collapse of the Congress. A collapse of a party is not of any major importance. The collapse of the country is, a matter that must be sharply brought to the attention of Sonia Gandhi and company. With a non-politician and inoffensive bureaucrat as Prime Minister, the nation can expect nothing. And that is a major trady in itself.

The CPM follows a fossilised ideology, fascist in every way (see Mainstream, December 22, 2007) which is leading India to disaster. The party has to be banned as inimical to the interests of the nation. If that is not done, the Congress must be shown the door without the slightest hesitation. The only thing relevant is the unity and empowerment of the nation, not of its constituent elements anywhere whether in West Bengal or Kerala. What that means is that the significance of Nandigram must be brought to the full attention of the voter so that a party, or even a coalition of respectable parties is restored to power, as once the NDA was, which will put the CPM in its place, which is the dustbin of history. The nation had enough of socialist and communist tomfoolery.

Patriotic fervour marks Republic Day in Andhra Pradesh


Hyderabad : The southern state of Andhra Pradesh Saturday celebrated Republic Day with patriotic fervour and enthusiasm.

Governor N.D. Tiwari led the celebrations by hoisting the tricolour at the official function held at the Parade Ground in Secunderabad. He also reviewed the colourful parade by contingents of the defence forces, police and National Cadet Corps (NCC). The rich cultural heritage of the state was on display in the forms of tableaux by various government agencies.

Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, Assembly Speaker K.R. Suresh Reddy, ministers and other officials participated in the function held amid tight security arrangements.

In a departure from the routine exercise of reading from a prepared text, the governor spoke extempore, explaining the significance of the day. The veteran leader, himself a freedom fighter, spoke in Hindi and recited a patriotic poem from his student days.

Quoting Father of Nation Mahatma Gandhi and Swami Vivekananda, Tiwari called on the young generation to imbibe the principles of the great freedom fighters.

Tiwari referred to the rapid strides made by the state in all sectors from irrigation to IT.

"Andhra Pradesh as a knowledge hub is going to make a significant contribution in India's emergence as a global power in the 21st century," he said.

The governor also referred to the problem of Maoist violence in the state saying it was a hurdle in the path of progress and development. He pointed out that Naxalbari in West Bengal, where Naxalite movement started, has transformed.

"There is no Naxalism in West Bengal. Naxalism is nothing but extremism and we should defeat extremism in all its forms," he said.

Centre plans to develop 33 Naxalite-infested districts

Friday January 25 2008 06:00 IST

KHAMMAM: To check the growing influence of the Maoists, the Central Government is planning to develop 33 worst Naxal-hit districts in the country by allocating additional funds.

According to official sources, Of the 33 Maoist-infested districts, Khammam in Andhra Pradesh, Dantewada in Chhattisgarh, Malkangiri and Koraput in Orissa have been identified for taking up these programmes.
Khammam district faces a unique problem compared to other Naxal-infested districts as the Bhadrachalam agency is located on the borders of Orissa, Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra where Maoists have considerable influence.

As Chhattisgarh and Orissa borders have thick forest cover, the job of Khammam district police has become more difficult to track down the movements of the Maoists especially after they resort to violence in Andhra Pradesh and escape to Chattisgarh.

According to police records, there are seven dalams comprising 50 Maoists in the district. Four dalams in Bhadrachalam area, one in Aswaraopet and two in Yellandu are still active. While 30 Maoists are from Khammam district, others hail from Warangal district and neighbouring state of Chhattisgarh.

Besides taking up developmental activities, the Union Home Ministry has also decided to provide additional police forces to fight the Maoists.

At a meeting held recently at Raipur in Chhattisgarh, which was attended by senior police officers from Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and Chhattisgarh, it has been decided that coordinated efforts from the three states was the only way to curb the Naxalites.

As part of the agreement, it has been decided to exchange information and conduct joint combing operations. Khammam superintendent of police DS Chowhan also attended the meet.

Speaking to this website’s newspaper, Chowhan said that cooperation from the neighbouring states was sought to tackle the Maoists.

As a result of the combined efforts, many Maoists have given up arms in recent time. Some of them have been arrested and five Maoists had been killed in encounters, he said.

'Lip service' to anti-Naxal drive

25 Jan 2008, 0353 hrs IST,TNN

CHANDRAPUR: For cops in Chandrapur and other adjoining districts, anti-Naxal operations were never about paying lip service to contain the rebel movement. Now, they are preparing to literally pay lip service to the anti-Naxal operations. The police department here has initiated intensive linguistic training for its personnel by teaching them Telugu, Bengali and Urdu, to better understand the Naxals, who rely a lot on support from the local populations, which speak these languages.

Operational requirements have forced the cops to take this sudden interest in linguistics. The Naxals have a wide-spread base in West Bengal, so Bengali is a language commonly used among them. Also, this region shares a border with Andhra Pradesh, where Telugu is the mother tongue, and which is the home state for many Naxals. Urdu, like wise, is intensively used in bordering areas of AP and even in Chandrapur district, making it necessary for cops to get a good grip on these languages, said a senior police officer.

Similar training has been started in other Naxal-infested districts like Gadchiroli and Gondia, informed police sources.

When contacted, additional director general of police, anti Naxal operations (ANO), Pankaj Gupta said they do conduct such courses to develop linguistic skills among cops. Chandrapur SP Chhering Dorje said classes for Urdu and Bengali have already started, while classes for Telugu would start soon.

"Around 50 cops will be trained, including staff of anti-Naxal cell, in the three languages, Telugu, Bengali and Urdu. The classes for the same have been started at police headquarters recently and lingual experts in the department have been given the job. Police have even sought help of private tutors to accomplish the task. A lady tutor for teaching Urdu has already been recruited at Chandrapur police headquarters," said a senior police officer.

Salwa Judum is second independence movement: Narasimhan

Press Trust Of India
Raipur, January 26, 2008
First Published: 15:51 IST(26/1/2008)
Last Updated: 15:56 IST(26/1/2008)

Chhattisgarh Governor ESL Narasimhan on Saturday said that 'Salwa Judum', the anti-Naxal operation is the second independence movement launched by the tribals of the state to save democracy.

Unfurling the tri-colour, the Governor saluted the impressive ceremonial parade in Raipur in the Police Parade Ground, and said the salute was to honour the Salwa Judum (meaning 'Peace Campaign' in tribal dialect), which transformed into a torch from a small light, enlightening minds.

"Salwa Judum will be imprinted in history as a success against the violent elements," he said.

The villagers have also unleashed the movement in the tribal areas of Bastar region of the state to save democracy, the Governor said, adding the sacrifice of the people involved in it would not go waste.

It was also the duty of not only the government but also of all the people to increase the morale of those involved in Salwa Judum to counter Naxalism, he said.

Started on June 5, 2005, the villagers of Dantewada district raised their voice against the Naxal violence and with the active support of the state BJP government, the movement later spread to other areas creating a difficult situation for the Left-wing extremists.

CPM non-governance cripples the state

Alliance partners openly attack CPM

By S. Chandrasekhar

As if domestic Islamic jehadis like Abdul Nasser Madhani, NDF, SIMI, SIO, Kantha-puram Musaliar’s Sunni faction and Mujahid’s are not enough, terror groups like Laskar-e-Toiba and Hizbul Mujahideen have found safe houses and green pastures in Kerala, thanks to pro-jehadi CPM regime and the Muslim dominated pockets spread over the state.

The police, based on Central Intelligence inputs, arrested Altaf Ahmed Khan, a Kashmir based Hizbul Mujahideen militant from Kumily in Idukki district on January, 5. He was involved in several extremist acts in Kashmir and has been hiding in Kerala masquerading as a shopkeeper in a Kashmiri emporium. He has been regularly travelling to and fro Kashmir and has also received training in PoK. There are around 5,000 Kashmiri Muslims in Kerala who have put up stalls in various tourist spots and the migrant labour populace mostly from border districts of West Bengal is 10 lakhs. The aim of Altaf was to organise the Kashmiris and the Muslim majority migrant labour for jehad. Despite several jehadi strikes going on in Kerala for several years, both the CPM led regime and the Muslim League dominated Congress have done nothing, for fear of losing Muslim vote-banks. If fact, Madhani was accorded royal welcome and Z category security by both the CPM and the UPA.

After jehadis, it is now the turn of Maoists to establish roots in Kerala. Although later sixties and seventies saw the rise of Naxalism, it was ruthlessly crushed by the then Home Minister K. Karunakaran of the Congress. But of late, in the name of protests against retail giants, Asian Development Bank, I.M.F. etc. splinter CPI (ML) and Maoists have spring up causing panic in Kerala society. Now Naxal leaders like Malliraja Reddy, Sende Raja Mouli and Sundera Murthy have been regularly visiting Kerala and based on I.B. reports, Malliraja Reddy was arrested from a granite quarry in Kochi, where he was hiding, and handed over to Andhra Pradesh Police. The Union Cabinet Secretary Shri. K.M. Chandrasekhar, who accords top priority to development activity in Naxal infected areas, said recently, in Kerala that a 15,000 strong, fully armed Maoist Army is posing a serious threat to the nation. But ignorant of all these threats, the CPM regime, sleeps, blissfully.

Unmindful of the threats faced by Kerala, the CPM civil war between Pinarayi and Atchudanandan faction continues unabated, giving the people some comic interludes, in the grave scenario. The district conferences, as a prelude to the state conference and the Party National Congress have become a show of strength between Pinarayi Vijayan and V.S. Atchudanandan. Wrecking revenge on V.S. for usurping the CM’s Chair, Pinarayi has captured all the districts, including V.S. strongholds of Thiruvananthapuram, Kottayam, Idukki, Ernakulam and Thrissur. In Palakkad, where V.S.’s constituency, Malampuzha is situated, even the M.Ps. K. Ajayakumar and N.N. Krishnadas (V.S. supporters) were decimated by the Pinarayi blitzkrieg.

V.S. has accursed Pinarayi of using Mafia links and tactics to destroy him and Pinarayi has accused V.S. of resorting to cheap methods to gain publicity. V.S. has now complained against Pinarayi to the Politburo and Karat. The Basu-Buddhadev hosanna to capitalism has also aggravated the VS - Pinarayi conflict with V.S. opposing capitalism and Pinarayi supporting it.

The allies of the CPM like the CPI, the RSP and the Janata Dal have said that constant in-fighting between the CPM groups have eroded the credibility of the LDF regime and have criticised both V.S. and Pinarayi.

In the opposite camp, former king-maker, Congress stalwart who made Rajiv Gandhi, Narasimha Rao, Prime Minister, K. Karunakaran, has returned to Congress, falling at the feet of Sonia behn and atoning for the sins of calling her ‘Madamma’ (Malayali slang for foreigner) from the top of Himalayas. Karunakaran’s flirtations with the DIC(K) and the NCP ended in disasters and has meekly returned putting his tail between the legs. But son K. Muralidharan remains with the letter head organisation of Sharad Pawar, NCP, in Kerala.

The CPM’s thirst for the RSS blood never ends in Kerala. A fortnight back, RSS Karyavah, Shri Vinod, who was returning after a football match; was brutally butchered, in broad daylight, in Mavelikara, in Alappuzha district. The CPM’s ally in the war against the RSS, is now the NDF, jehadi incarnate. Bomb-making continues unabated in Kannur, the killing fields of the RSS-CPM conflict.

The CPM won the 2006 assembly polls with the strong support of Christians/Muslims. But due to the CPM’s effort to takeover professional colleges run by the minorities, they were alienated from the CPM, and even threatened a ‘Liberation Struggle’ against the LDF. Further the move to change school timings, which will clash with the madrasa timings, has taken the Muslims to the warpath. Also Pinarayi, calling a Bishop, a ‘Despicable Character’ has around the Christian anger against the CPM. The Catholic Bishops Conference of India, Arch bishop. Varkey Mar Vidhayathil and Archbishop Mar Powathil have declared war on the CPM.

To get into the good books of the Hindus, who are angered at the mess created by the Dewasom Minister G. Sudhakaran and Travancore Dewaswom Board at Shabarimala, Chief Minister V.S. forgetting all his Commie background, trekked to Shabarimala along with the Health Minister P.K. Sreemathi and opened a cardiac surgery centre for pilgrims. Worried at the serious loss of minority votes, the CPM had to fall back to its Hindu vote-bank. Anyway for the believers and the Hindus of Kerala, it was a welcome move, although the intentions were opportunistic and doubtful.

If CPM provides comedy, can CPI be far behind? Concerned at the acute shortage of rice and its rising prices, the Food Minister, C. Divakaran of CPI, asked the people of Kerala, to avoid rice and take, eggs, milk and chicken! But the ignorant Minister doesn’t know that just like rice, these items also come from outside the state.

Said a French Queen, ‘If they dont have bread, let them eat cakes’. May be Divakaran is taking a cue from her. But CPI and CPM cannot escape from their lopsided labour policy, which destroyed agriculture and industry in Kerala, forcing lakhs to migrate to other states and the Gulf for slave labour.

Chhattisgarh governor salutes Salwa Judum in R Day speech


Raipur : Chhattisgarh Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan Saturday praised the Salwa Judum civil militia movement in the state as "the biggest ever decisive move" to "protect democracy" against Maoists.

In his Republic Day speech at the Police Parade Ground here, the governor said: "I salute the tribal people's Salwa Judum that has given a direction to the state to counter the Maoism storm."

In his 10-minute speech, Narasimhan described the Salwa Judum as "the biggest ever decisive move by people in the post-independence period inspired to protect democracy against Maoist extremism.

"The movement will find a place in history as the Salwa Judum has now become a blaze from a flame," he said. "It's not only the duty of the state government to encourage the cadres but also the people to back them to wipe out Maoists."
Earlier, Narasimhan hoisted the national flag and presided over an impressive cultural presentation by school students. Around 5,000 people thronged the Police Parade Ground to watch the parade.

Chief Minister Raman Singh hoisted the tri-colour at Ambikapur, the district headquarters of Surguja.

The tribal population of Bastar launched the Salwa Judum in June 2005 against the Maoists. The government later provided arms and monetary backup.

Maoist guerrillas have killed nearly 1,000 people since the movement was launched. Over 50,000 tribal people have fled their villages to take shelter in 23 government-run relief camps due to threats from insurgents.

The governor also appreciated the government for its efforts to address the basic needs of the poor, especially the Food Security Scheme aimed at providing 35 kg rice a month to each of the 3.4 million poor families at Rs.3 per kg.

Police medals for 674 bravehearts

Aloke Tikku, Hindustan Times
Email Author
New Delhi, January 25, 2008
First Published: 23:28 IST(25/1/2008)
Last Updated: 03:08 IST(26/1/2008)

Over 650 security personnel have been named for gallantry and other awards this year to honour their exceptional bravery and distinguished services in protecting India from terrorists and criminals. Eight lost their lives.

Binod Rai, 21, of Sikkim, killed in West Bengal in an encounter with the Naxals in December 2006, was among them. Rai, was less than a year into his job with the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), had elderly parents, two sisters and a brother to support back home in Sikkim.

Rai was at the forefront of the counterattack and went down fighting. Two Naxal leaders were killed in the operation.

A home ministry spokesman said Rai was among the 13 personnel awarded the President’s Police Medals for Gallantry. Deen Bandhu Pal of the Border Security Force was another. He was killed during patrolling the Raishyabari border in Dhalai district by members of the outlawed Biswamohan Debbarma faction of the National Liberation Front of Tripura.

Others awarded the President’s Police Medals for Gallantry include constable Manukonda Venkata Nageshwara Rao (posthumously) and inspector Tanga Ramakrishna of Andhra Pradesh Police, DSP Shalley Singh, sergeant constable Farooq Ahmad and constable Mohammad Iqbal of Jammu and Kashmir Police, head constable Mohd. Aslam Chichi, constable D Boro and Deen Bandhu Pal (posthumously) of BSF, sub-inspector Kaptan Boipai and constable Hoshiyar Singh of the Central Industrial Security Force and constable Jagdish Patel and inspector Gopal Prasad Singh of the CRPF.

The home ministry spokesman said 674 personnel have been awarded police medals on Republic Day this year. President’s Police Medals for Distinguished Service have been awarded to 72, Police Medals for Gallantry to 111 personnel and Police Medals for Meritorious Service have been awarded to 478 personnel.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Sambalpur has tourism potential: Patnaik

Statesman News Service
SAMBALPUR, Jan. 24: Sambalpur district has tremendous tourist potential which is a good thing.
Whether it is the leaning temple at Huma or the world famous Hirakud dam, tourist spots here are reputed for being unique. They are famous all over the world for their beauty.
At the same time, two dykes at both ends of the Hirakud dam with lush green forest are no less attractive than the marine drive of Konark.
Hence, a well planned tourism network can bring economic development in this district said Mr Pradipta Kumar Patnaik, the new collector of Sambalpur today.
Mr Patnaik joined the district today after the transfer of his predecessor, Mr LN Nayak, to the state capital.
Speaking on the burning problem of the region, particularly in the Hirakud command area, Mr Patnaik said that agriculture and industry are to go hand in hand for the development of the people. “Water given to farmers would never be a problem,” he assured.
Steps will be taken to bring the Maoists into the mainstream.
Activities in the block would be streamlined, so that development in the rural areas could be visualised, the new collector said.
“On my very first day in office, I have called on the Block Development officers (BDOs) of the district to instruct them for a strict implementation of the welfare schemes of the government meant for the people,” said Mr Patnaik. “Only integrated development can discourage such unlawful activities,” he added.
“I will see that the benefit of the public distribution system reaches the targeted group,” Mr Patnaik added.

Cops comb forests for abducted policemen in Chhattisgarh

Raipur, Jan 25 (IANS) The police search teams have gone into the thick forests of Chhattisgarh's Bijapur district Friday to look for two Special Police Officers (SPOs) whom Maoist militants kidnapped late Thursday, the police said.

"Several search teams have spread over in the Maoist stronghold forested hamlets of Bhairamgarh and Gangloor areas early Friday to rescue the two tribal male SPOs who were taken hostage by leftists radicals Thursday," Ankit Garg, Bijapur district superintendent of police, told newsmen at Bijapur town nearly 440 km south of capital Raipur.

The police believe that both policemen, in their late 20s, are kept in a rebel hideout in the forests near Bhairamgarh locality.

Meanwhile, thousands of security forces have been deployed Friday in and around the government installations in the insurgency hit southern Bastar region and at the residences of politicians and top police officers in Raipur in view of Maoists' call to boycott the Republic Day celebrations Saturday.

Maoists release abducted tribal cops in Chhattisgarh

By IANS 01/29/2008

Raipur : After keeping them in captivity for four days, Maoist militants in Chhattisgarh released two tribal Special Police Officers (SPOs)from their custody Monday in the southern district of Bijapur.

"Both the SPOs, males in their late 20s, were set free by the leftist extremists today, they are unharmed but highly terrorised," Ankit Garg, Bijapur district superintendent of police, told IANS.

He added that the two men were released in a forested area of Gangloor in Bijapur district in Bastar region, some 440 km south of capital Raipur, from where they were abducted Jan 24.

"The SPOs were released only after they committed to the rebels that they would not assist police force in the future anti-Maoist operations," a local police officer said.

The Chhattisgarh government has recruited about 4,500 local youths, mainly tribals, as SPOs in the worst insurgency affected districts of Bijapur and its adjoining Dantewada. The main responsibility of the SPOs is to assist the police force to dismantle rebels' terror network at grass root level.

Left’s Obsession With Ideological Postures

by P Raman

OF ALL the happy tidings that had emerged from the Prime Minister’s Beijing sojourn, one stands apart. That is the myth that if China supports the India-US nuclear deal, the Left in India will instantly withdraw all its objections, and things will be happy forever. The premise is founded on so many false assumptions jointly woven by our strategic ‘community’ with cold war mindset, South Bloc bureaucracy and the non-political politicians. The harsh truth is that China or no China, the Left parties are not going to budge an inch on the nuclear deal or India-US strategic partnership.

Much of the endless tension in the working of the Left supporters and the government could be attributed to the absence of a proper understanding about the Left’s traditional mindset. Forty-four months of close association has not made the government side any wiser about the Left’s obsession with certain ideological postures and their working style. In UPA government, Mr Pranab Mukherjee and Mr A K Antony alone understand the Left mind and their nuances. Hence each time policy clashes between the government side and Left reached the flash point, the onus of saving the government fell on the Sonia establishment and Pranab Mukherjee.

Much of the trouble could be traced to ignorance about the Left’s existential compulsions. The CPI(M), like other cadre-based parties, is ever conscious of its workers’ responses to its decisions. Any false step, the leadership will encounter loud murmuring from the ranks. Naxalites of 60s and 70s have been offshoots of such ideological clashes. Effective discipline and loyalty are built on ideological and programmatic commitment. This is the Left’s strength as well as weakness.

The new breed of politicians and the strategic advisers, domestic or foreign, can hardly understand such Left compulsions. Watch the kind of turmoil raised by Mr Jyoti Basu’s ‘capitalism’ statement this month among the Left ranks. The latter has a committed constituency, however narrow it might be. Much of the PM camp’s clashes with the Left can be traced to the simplistic manner they presumed things. Even if China passionately supports the nuclear deal, it is not going to influence the Left. Even at the peak of the cold war, the CPI(M) had repeatedly reasserted its independence.

In fact, the party itself was born out of the defiance of both Soviet Union and China. Old timers know how for 13 years, week after week, their People’s Democracy came out with fierce refutations of the two communist giants’ divergent ideological positions. How facile is the belief that the Left will support the India-US nuclear deal just to help the Russsians get contracts for four nuclear plants for Kudamkulam. For months, the government side lived on the fiction that the Left’s anti-BJPism will ultimately force it to stand by it and wink at the nuclear deal. But the CPI(M) bosses could not ignore their old ‘communalism versus imperialism’ syndrome.

The next hope was to use the ‘Bengal group’ against the rootless Delhi bosses. Before the crucial Politbureau meeting began, Mr Budhdhadev was taken for a breakfast with PM. The US investors and the envoy specially concentrated on the ‘Bengal group’. Incidentally, even at the peak of Nandigram clashes and Kerala crisis, the CPI(M) was ready to pull the rug even at the cost of a reduced Lok Sabha tally. The PM’s ‘so-be-it’ challenge to the Left in August last to try and topple the government on the nuclear deal issue has been the culmination of such miscalculations.

The outside supporters were certainly under provocation to hit back. The smaller Left partners were impatient. If the UPA government had survived in August, it has been due to the Left’s perseverance, Sonia establishment’s decisive intervention and the pragmatism by Mr Mukherjee and Mr A K Antony. Now Mr Mukherjee has gone public that the UPA government will survive full term even if the nuclear deal has to be dumped. This means the arrangement with the outside supporter will be stretched out beyond the 14 Lok Sabha.

This calls for a deeper understanding of their compulsions and divergence of views on fundamental issues. These pertain to three areas. First, the battle for territorial domination in Kerala, Tripura and to an extent West Bengal. The Left has already proved that they can fight and win elections even while supporting the Congress at the Centre. Second has been the South and North Blocs’ running battles with the Left over the reform agenda. When the CMP was signed, South Bloc dismissed it as another omnibus ‘National Agenda’ of NDA. It could easily be superimposed by the former’s own reform agenda. Chidambaram (who had jointly drafted the National Front’s CMP) alone could visualize the impending showdowns.

For two years, uneasy peace prevailed on contentions issues like PSU sell-off, pension and PF and labour bill. Now there seems to exist a political consensus of the sort on such issues with the opposition, UPA allies and the Congress ranks refusing to join the reformers’ battles. The third is the Left’s opposition to taking India into the US military alliance and strategic partnership. The Left thinks that the India-US nuclear deal is part of what they call ‘enslavement’.

Over a dozen joint programmes are in the pipeline to sever Indian military’s traditional links with the Russians and integrate it with the US, Israel and NATO. It held 50 joint exercises with the US against a dozen low-key ones with all others together.

Several pacts, including the Logistics Support Agreement to permit US use Indian ports and bases for attack on Islamic countries, remain blocked due to Left threat. This is going to be the next theatre of conflict. Then there are the minor areas of conflict like the petroleum price hike and the Left homilies on fighting communalism in Gujarat. As a mainstream party, the Congress will have to evolve its own policies to suit the emerging situations. Then there are areas like corporate support and foreign patronage – both are crucial for the survival of any post-1991 government in India.

The Left-Congress alliance may not be perfect. Coordination mechanism is in shambles with no meetings from November, 2006. Yet it has endured the worst tumults. Throughout the period, the confrontation was between the Left and the PM camp. The Sonia establishment had scrupulously kept off the face-off and functioned more as an umpire. The comrades, on their part, had behaved with utmost caution and responsibility even in the face of PM’s pull-down challenge. They refused to vote with the opposition on nuclear deal and instead negotiated 11 conditions with the government. Tough negotiators, Mr Pranab Mukherjee knows how the two sides had held secret talks to sort out complex issues. This is going to be the feature of the ties between the two sides

An officer and a gentleman

Lessons in management from the tough and honest cop who had the underworld ducking for cover.

D. Sivanandhan, CoP, Thane

It was sometime around 1998-99 when the then Commissioner of Police, Mumbai, introduced me to his “blue-eyed boy,” D. Sivanandhan, I.P.S., then Joint Commissioner (Crime). It was a difficult time for Mumbai. The ‘Bhais’ had been making a fine art of extortion. Public confidence was at an all-time low. People were running scared. If you bought a car, you could expect a dreaded extortion call.

Special situations somehow throw up special people. And Siva, as he is called by friends, was the man of the moment. He became what was called the barrier between the bullet and the businessman. He also needed to be prominent in the media in order to reassure people. There couldn’t have been a better man for the job. Siva is genial, informal, has a flair for publicity and public relations, is very accessible, and most important, has a reputation of being a tough, honest cop.

The media loved Siva and he did a wonderful job. He was seen standing outside wedding halls introducing himself to anxious parents, telling them to call the police if they were contacted by extortionists.

He and his elite team focused on a multi-pronged strategy that included encounters, rounding up illegal arms, detaining known trouble-makers, arresting gangsters fearlessly, introducing new and effective legislation and making the police presence felt all over the city.

‘Not one builder was shot after July 1, 1998” says Siva, “and there was not a single bomb blast during that tenure. I kept the people busy running.”

I comment about his larger-than-life image. Something that grew even bigger after the release of the movie Company where South Indian and Malayalam superstar Mohanlal plays the role of a policeman modelled on Sivanandhan.

“Bombay was becoming like Beirut. I had to win the trust of the people,” says Siva. “I used the media to say that no gangster can harm you if you approach the police. I was in Gadchiroli before that time fighting Naxalites. I came to Mumbai and realised I was being seen as the only hope people had. Consular officers would call me and enquire if it was safe for their personnel to be stationed in Mumbai. The choice was between winning and failing. Between making money and making a name for myself. I chose to win. And make a name.” Siva has a unique capability of making grand statements without sounding immodest. In fact, he comes across as a humble person.

He also spearheaded a unique initiative called Alert Citizen where citizens were asked to call in to a designated telephone number and report any crime they saw, all with the assurance of complete anonymity. Siva was able to get the complete cooperation of the advertising and media community for this initiative, and I was able to observe his functioning at close quarters.

I had marvelled at the fact that even at the height of those troubled times, when he was taking on the entire underworld, Siva could be seen walking alone down Marine Drive every morning.

No escorts or gun-toting lackeys around him, unlike other senior I.P.S. officers. “I still walk alone,” he says quietly. “I am not afraid. If you send out a signal that you are scared how can you possibly make the general public feel secure?”

“In an atmosphere where policemen are generally considered corrupt, how have you built an honest reputation for yourself?” I enquire. Siva looks philosophical.

“Whether you talk about the crumbling Roman Empire or any decadent system, there is always an enviable corner reserved for honest people. That is a nice corner to occupy. Yet, being honest alone can make you a liability. You must combine honesty with action and the result will be widespread appreciation. You will enjoy the glow of acknowledgement.”

I try baiting him by asking him how he handles political interference. He is cool as he says, “Political interference begins with signals you send out. I have never experienced any political interference.”

Few people know that Sivanandhan began his professional life as an Assistant Professor of Economics at the CBM College in Coimbatore. He appeared for the UPSC examination, qualified for the I.P.S. and the rest, as they say is history.

Along the way Siva managed to “organise life in a manner where you make time for the family”. His stints at the IB and CBI were phases that did not demand the 24X7 rigour of policing. “I have moved 27 houses in 30 years,” he adds, smiling. “So how do you cope with the stress that is obvious in your life?” I enquire.

Siva loves organising and managing events. He organises cultural programmes, lectures and the like. And likes attending talks by people like Stephen Covey. He is an avid reader as well. He opens his drawer and pulls out three books he is currently reading. I notice one is by Robin Sharma and the other by me.

His advice for young managers is “hard work, honesty, positive thinking and productive work”. He does not like people unproductively quoting from a rule book. He exhorts young people to take risks, face criticism and build character.

As Commissioner of Police in Thane off Mumbai, Siva has been involved in making something quite miraculous happen. He has raised about Rs 10 crore and built a modern, well-equipped school. Initially for policemen’s children, the school now opens its doors to the entire community. An educational trust runs the school.

He has also built a hospital that is going to be run by a private company.

A trendy café outside his office is run by wives of policemen, a monument to policemen who lost their lives in the line of duty has come up and a huge modern structure encompasses the parade ground.

His efforts are a sterling example of how a public spirited officer with a vision can get around the labyrinth of red-tapism and governmental apathy and do something that benefits his force and the community it is meant to protect.

“Life is so simple if you don’t expect anything from anyone. You just give your best. And life will be rewarding,” says Siva. Well said, Sir! May there be more officers and good human beings like you.

Bihar on security alert for R-Day

Posted at Friday, 25 January 2008 14:01 IST
Patna, Jan 25: Bihar has been put on high alert ahead of Republic Day celebrations tomorrow in view of threat perception from Naxalites.

Police across the state have been instructed to remain on high alert to thwart any attempt by subversive elements and Naxalites to create disturbance, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Anil Kumar Sinha said.

Special security arrangements have been made in Naxal-affected areas especially at vital installations like railway stations, airports and jails.

Strict vigil is being maintained on railway properties, an easy target of Naxalites, and patrolling has been intensified on the tracks, railway officials said.

"Security has been tightened in trains passing through the state," said B D Garg, Divisional Railway Manager, Danapur.

Random security checks are being conducted at Patna railway station with the help of sniffer dogs.

Code Red: No Dissent In Marxist Land

Activists decry the arrest of People’s March editor saying he was denied several fundamental rights

Kochi and Thrissur

INTERNAL SECURITY has often been the cover for the State to clamp down on people with an ultra-Left background. In the latest case, the editor of a Kerala based pro-Maoist monthly, People’s March, was arrested a month ago from his office in Trikkakara near Kochi. The 68-year-old editor, P. Govindan Kutty is on an indefinite hunger strike in judicial custody to highlight the human rights violation. But barring a few activists of the People’s Union of Civil Liberties (PUCL), civil society in the highly literate state still seems to be completely unmindful. The PUCL activists have threatened to launch an agitation near the Kerala High Court protesting against the unlawful manner in which the arrest was carried out.

The Kerala Police and Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan have said that a close watch is being kept on activists demanding the protection of Kutty’s rights. They have also said they would not allow anyone like him to run any publication that voices dissent against State atrocities. Authorities at the Central Jail in Viyyur are reported to be injecting glucose drip to Kutty as he is determined not to break the fast. Activists say he is often straitjacketed to inject the drip. At the time of filing this report, he was being shifted to the Government Medical College in Thrissur.

According to PUCL state president PA Pouran, Kutty is continuing his fast alleging that even the minimum legal procedure was ignored and the basic rights of a prisoner, including access to a lawyer, had been denied him. When he was arrested and remanded to judicial custody in December, the authorities insisted that he could talk to his lawyer only in the presence of jail officials.

Kutty, who was a government servant, had come in contact with Maoist thought while working in Andhra Pradesh about two decades ago. He returned to Kerala five years ago and launched his small publication, which sells only a few hundred copies. The publication has never been proceeded against and meets legal requirements such as registration with the Registrar of Newspapers for India and has permission to be carried at concessional rates by the postal department.

Charges against Govindan Kutty are framed under Sections 134, 124A, 133B of the Indian Penal Code and under the 1967 Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, which has never been used against a journalist. One of the main charges against Kutty is that he wrote an article some five years ago hailing the Maoist attack on the then Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu.

Human rights activists say the arrest and the consequent developments raise several disturbing questions. “First of all, it exposes the palpable intolerance being shown by the police and the present government in Kerala towards any kind of dissent. The second is the scant respect for human rights and the fundamental rights of every citizen, including prisoners. The third is the selective and arbitrary manner in which the civil society in Kerala, including intellectuals and the mainstream media, seem to behave even on issues where fundamental rights are violated,” says NP Chekkutty, noted journalist and editor of Malayalam daily Thejus.

PUCL’s Pouran says Kutty was arrested soon after the Andhra Pradesh Police picked up two Maoist activists, Malla Raja Reddy and Suguna, from Angamaly near Alwaye on December 17 last year. The two were living among construction workers from outside the state. The AP team had come in plainclothes without informing local authorities as required by law, and was attempting to get away with the two until the local people stopped their vehicle. It was only then that the AP Police agreed to produce the two in a court and get a transit warrant.

Such secret raids seem to have become a routine affair. In June 2007, another Maoist, Raja Mouli, was forcibly taken by a group of AP policemen from the Kollam railway station. He was not produced in any court and his body was recovered two days later in Andhra Pradesh.

THE KERALA Police, which raided the offices of Govindan Kutty alleging he was helping Malla Raja Reddy find shelter in Kerala, still maintain that he is a man of terror. But they could not find any evidence to link him to Reddy and hence the decision to charge him for an article written five years ago. It is also said the police manipulated the mainstream Malayalam media to demonise Kutty. The stories about his personal life were carried without his version. Only a handful of media houses took his version of the story, thereby highlighting the police’s blatantly false claims.

While opposing his bail application in the Kerala High Court, the police said Govindan Kutty was providing ideological backing to Maoists of different streams for the last five
years and his release would help Naxalism grow in Kerala. But the home department has no answers as to why they allowed him to engage in such activities for the past five years
and what prompted his arrest in December.

“We are not against taking proper legal action against him if he is guilty. But throwing basic human rights to the wind in the name of Naxal raids is not justified,” said Pouran.

From Tehelka Magazine, Vol 5, Issue 4, Dated Feb 02, 2008

ASSOCHAM asks Centre, states to set up SEZs in troubled areas

24 Jan 2008, 2121 hrs IST,PTI

MUMBAI: Industry body ASSOCHAM has suggested that Central government and state governments should develop SEZs in trouble-torn and Naxal-hit areas of the country where problems like insurgency and youth unrest exists.

ASSOCHAM President Venugopal Dhoot, in a letter addressed to the central and state governments said: "SEZs could be used as a tool to address issues like insurgency."

It suggested that Special Economic Zones should be set up in areas like Assam, Chambal valley and Naxal-hit Telangana, Jharkhand and West Bengal.

ASSOCHAM letter has pointed out that problems like insurgency and youth unrest exist in areas which have not seen the light of economic development.

"Both the central and state governments should take the initiative to invite developers for setting up SEZ projects in insurgency-prone areas," ASSOCHAM said.

The chamber said the government should go out of the way in giving incentives to attract companies for setting up SEZs in these areas.

"We should not analyse returns in the short term and be concerned about the long term prospects that these projects bring on board," the letter said.

'Ferreira naxal mastermind in Chanda'

25 Jan 2008, 0344 hrs IST,Mazhar Ali,TNN

CHANDRAPUR: Suspected naxalite Arun Ferreira, who was arrested from Mumbai last year, was a big catch - he masterminded development of the rebel network in Chandrapur district, police have revealed.

Chandrapur superintendent of police Cherring Dorje said, "He used to run an frontal organisation called Vidyarthi Pragati Sangathana in Mumbai which was banned by the government. Later, he came to Chandrapur in 2001 and stayed here till 2006 in different places of the district. With the help of Arun Bhelke, he formed Desh Bhakti Yuva Mancha to recruit more youths for the banned outfit of CPI (Maoist)."

Corroborating Dorje's statement, additional director general of anti naxal operations (ANO), Pankaj Gupta said the entire naxal network in the district was developed by Ferreira with the help of persons like Arun Bhelke and Manoj Sonule who used to receive remuneration on regular basis from Ferreira and other top naxal leaders.

Dorje added that Bhelke was in charge of the recruitment. "After the recruitments were done, the youths were trained in handling arms and running the nexus in such an efficient way that they can be termed as professional revolutionaries," Dorje said adding that it was 'unfortunate' that they used names of Ambedkar and Bhagat Singh whose ideology differ from that of theirs, to motivate youths of the district. He added that more high profile naxal cadres are expected to be arrested in the coming days.

Earlier, sources from Chandrapur police, revealed that Manoj Sonule, the naxal who was arrested with a foreign-made carbine, was on a regular pay-scale of the banned outfit CPI(Maoist) and used to receive substantial bonus on delivery of each consignment of arms and inflammatory literature. Many of the arrested accused were operational at different places under different assumed names, said police sources.

Sources informed that Manoj who has ideologically accepted the naxal movement, used to receive Rs 2000 as honorarium every month, apart from the travelling allowance and other expenses. "He was in regular touch with state secretary of CPI (Maoist) Milind Teltumbde. He also received a lumpsum amount of Rs 30,000 from an assignment recently," sources said. Sonule had received training in arms-handling in Abujhmad jungles and was operational under four names, sources added.

"Arun Bhelke, president of Deshbhakti Yuva Manch, used to operate in the district with different names," sources added.

Sources further informed that financial transactions of Arun Bhelke too are under scanner and records show that he has made recent transactions of up to Rs 50,000. Police, after dealing with the active cadres of naxal nexus will turn its attention to the financial patrons of these naxal activists, sources informed.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Big Brother and India’s internal security

Last Updated: Thursday, 24 January , 2008, 13:20

Maloy Krishna Dhar started life off as a junior reporter for Amrita Bazaar Patrika in Calcutta and a part-time lecturer. He joined the Indian Police Service in 1964 and was permanently seconded to the Intelligence Bureau.

During his long stint in the Bureau, Dhar saw action in almost all Northeastern states, Sikkim, Punjab and Kashmir. He also handled delicate internal political and several counterintelligence assignments. After retiring in 1996 as joint director, he took to freelance journalism and writing books. Titles credited to him are Open Secrets-India's Intelligence Unveiled, Fulcrum of Evil-ISI,CIA Al Qaeda Nexus, and Mission to Pakistan.Maloy is considered a top security analyst and a social scientist who tries to portray Indian society through his writings.

During a recent encounter with a representative of the US Department of Homeland Security, the important Capitol cog tried to explain to me that India’s internal security concerns were confined to narrow indigenous problems.

The US, on the other hand, linked threats to its homeland security with malevolent forces from the Islamic world, Jurassic remnants of the Cold War countries and certain countries in Africa, Asia and South America controlling the energy resources.

I was not surprised by his forceful arguments before an awed Indian audience attending a sumptuous seminar, organised by a reputed think tank whose fuel supply is reportedly shipped from the US.

The Western powers, especially the post-World War II neo-imperial block, had pitted itself against a lurching juggernaut called the Iron-Curtain countries and the Muslim nations in the Middle East, Africa, South and South East Asia.

I tried to explain that while the West took over 50 years to dismember the Iron-Curtain power block, the political geography of the Muslim nations in Middle East and elsewhere were mutilated soon after the World War I with a view to maintaining the West’s hegemony on the energy resources, for exercising strategic control and for establishing client nations to serve the neo-colonial masters.

They fought wars everywhere, and war and war related industries had steadied the economic spines of these countries. Fossil-fuel from these countries and prospects of extending the imperial snouts to the fossil-fuel fields in the Central African Republic, African and South American countries had blinded the US and its friends to the fact that their intervention in Afghanistan, Iraq and threatened intervention in Syria and Iran had generated tremendous forces in the Muslim worlds, unwilling to live with the post- World War political geography imposed on them.

These forces had peaked with the 9/11 attack on the US and subsequent attacks in other European countries.

This inevitable historical “bounce back” is an inseparable part of the universal theory of special relativity applied to the physical world. These forces, multiplied by the grim reality of demographic resurgence of Islamic people in the European countries, have added fresh worries to Homeland Security in the US and similar institutions formally and informally structured in the European countries.

They are of the unanimous opinion that Homeland Security of the US and its ‘White’ allies arise out of threats from Salafi, Wahhabi, Deobandi Islamist jihadi groups, especially the new philosophy of violence preached by the Al Qaeda al Sulbah and the Taliban.

Countries like India, my US interlocutor emphasised, suffered from Internal Security problems because of mismanagement of internal affairs and incapability to restore equilibrium between the majority rightist reactionary Hindu nationalist forces and the minority Muslims.

Arrogance is a disease that cannot be cured by reason. Indians know it well from the recent demeanour of the Australian Cricket captain and his team mates.

However, I tried to enlighten my US friend that India has had a longer history of foreign interventions in its internal security matters. Though some internal security concerns had arisen out of neglected internal fault lines, most of them were exploited by neighbouring foreign countries.

While the Black unrest in the US was not exploited by Ghana or Congo or Cuba, ethnic unrest in Indian northeast were exploited from day one by Pakistan, China and Bangladesh. Therefore, it would be difficult for the US to appreciate the universal theory of “external input in internal disaffected movement.” This formula was also tried by the COMINTERN (Communist International) and the USSR in certain countries with a view to export communism.

But the US friend perhaps found it difficult to digest the facts of history that plagued India for nearly 60 years.

The US looking glass, according to him, was trained at the Salafi, Wahhabi, Deobandi (Pakistan and Bangladesh) jihadis and the pregnant shadows of the Talibani and Al Qaeda forces operating from Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Pakistan and Palestine. It was a renewed Islamic jihad against the Christian world represented by the US.

Big brothers are closed-minded. My pleading with him touched two raw chords of the West. The Islamic world, especially in the Middle East, Africa and elsewhere, was geopolitically, strategically and economically exploited by the West, often foisting on the people ruthless dictators. The US selectively decided to impose democracy on Iraq while maintaining silence on the dictatorial regimes in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Libya and other African countries.

The US, I pleaded, should abandon the pretension that Israel-Palestine imbroglio is a localised issue and does not require international intervention to give back the home to the Palestinian people that was robbed by the Western powers and later by Israel. It is a global issue and is a part of the soul of the on-going jihad movement against the Western powers.

I pointed out that India’s internal security concerns are primarily conditioned by the forces operating from its immediate neighbouring countries - Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and geopolitically contiguous countries like Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Waziristan and even Iran.

The so-called Kashmir dispute was being continually exploited by Pakistan with the help of its rogue intelligence agency, the ISI, and madrasa bred tanzeems. A handful of disaffected Indian Kashmiris were being used to repeat the refrain of partition-eve song that India should be divided on the basis of religion. This stale arrack has become the elixir of existence of the nation called Pakistan.

The Afghan jihad saga was turned against Indian Punjab and Kashmir, and now the home-baked jihadi tanzeems and their Talibani and Al Qaeda associates are being directed to activate in the Indian heartland.

But the tabulated figure of jihadi attacks in mainland India did not shake the US official, who threw what is now known as the ‘Sachar Shariat ’at my face. This report of the Sachar Commission has sent panic wave amongst the ‘secular’ political parties, who now shed tons of crocodile tears for the minority Muslim community, pushing them back to the expectation levels of the community heightened 70-80 years ago by Mohammad Ali Jinnah and his separatist colleagues.

There was no ‘Black’ and ‘White’ nation tussles in the US, even though a former African-American Obama Barrack (with some Muslim family background) is challenging a blue-blooded Clinton. Trivialising history is a privilege of the Big Brothers.

I pointed out that most recent jihadi attacks on India were engineered by Bangladesh based Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI), and even Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad activists were taking the Bangladesh and Nepal routes to perpetrate crimes in mainland India.

In addition, the Maoist forces in Nepal are extending material and ideological support to the Indian Maoists. Most of the weapons were not surrendered by them. A large quantity were diverted to the Indian groups on pay and carry basis. The western powers so rabidly poised against Maoist threats have so far not interacted with the government in Kathmandu to stop this funnelling which has added sinews of war to the Indian Maoists.

I had to finally point out to the friends of the US and the US representative that their Homeland Security problem had arisen out of the inevitable “blowback” process of blatant intervention in the internal and regional affairs of the Islamic nations.

The birth of Salafi jihad in Egypt, and its marriage with the Wahhabi and Deobandi activists had taken place for the dual purpose of fighting the ‘near enemy’ (the despotic internal regimes) and the ‘distant enemies’, the West and its allies who had foisted tyrannical regimes, exploited the economic and energy resources and had armed the jihadis to fight against the ‘communist devils’. India could not be a partner in this war against ‘global terror’ unless and until the West recognised that Islamist nations around India were foisting jihad on Indian soil with a view to rejuvenating the ‘Frankenstein’ of nationhood based on religion.

India has its own wars to fight against regional jihadis now irretrievably connected to the global jihadi forces represented by Al Qaeda and the Talibani forces. These Salafi-Wahhabi-Deobandi jihadis were likely to take control of Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan and create serious security concerns for India. A destabilised India would add to the security concerns of the West.

For India, the thin line between strategic National Security that encompass major defence preparations and the internal security that are supposed to be localised law and order problems have been obliterated by blatant intervention by the neighbouring countries, and the unintended neglect of the umbrella regional security concerns of countries like Nepal and Myanmar. Thus, for India, internal security is synonymous with national security.

But the Big Brother remained unconvinced.

The views expressed in the article are the author’s and not of

Chhattisgarh sacks bureaucrat who met jailed Naxal supporter Binayak sen


Raipur : The Chhattisgarh government has sacked its education advisor for meeting a human rights activist who is in jail for his alleged links with Maoist rebels in the state.

Sharat Chandra Behar, a former chief secretary of undivided Madhya Pradesh government, lost his job after he allegedly met Binayak Sen, a Maoist sympathiser, in central jail here, official sources told IANS Thursday.

"It's surprising how a government advisor who served as chief secretary of Chhattisgarh's parent state can meet a person in jail who is arrested for his link with top Maoist militants and also for acting as courier to rebels," a senior official said.

Sen, a paediatrician by profession and vice president of People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), was arrested in May last year in Bilaspur city.

He is accused of having links with top Maoist leaders, including the outfit's ideologue Narayan Sanyal. He has been kept in Raipur Centra jail since his arrest under the stringent Chhattisgarh Special Public Security Act 2005 (CSPSA) and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.

The official added that government has decided to sack Behar as he first met Sen and then came down heavily on the authorities for being unjust to the jailed rights activist.

Behar has also raised question on the legitimacy of the government-backed civil militia movement, Salwa Juudm, launched in June 2005 against the insurgents in state's southern Bastar region.

Behar, who has also been director general of Makhanlal Chaturvedi National University of Journalism, Bhopal, was earlier considered a close aide of Congress leader and former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Digvijay Singh. But the state's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government surprised everyone in October 2007 by appointing him as its education advisor.

Behar along with Narmada Bachao Andolan leader Medha Patkar and other rights activists met Sen in jail Jan 21, and then slammed the government for detaining Sen for his Maoist links. They also accused the government of ill-treating him in the jail.

ORISSA : Ultras misguiding tribals: DGP

Wednesday January 23 2008 11:07 IST

MALKANGIRI: Director-General of Police Gopal Nanda on Tuesday called for strengthening internal security in the southern districts to stop further insurgency.

Talking to the media during a surprise visit to the district on Tuesday, the DGP blamed the Left Wing extremists for misguiding the innocent and illiterate tribals.

The tribals residing in the remote, inaccessible and interior pockets of the district do not know politics and thus get easily influenced, he added.

Nanda’s visit, which assumes significance in view of the arrest of three Maoist cadres, including Salbam Mukta of Chhattisgarh from Motu area on Monday, was reportedly kept secret for security reasons.

The DGP reviewed the ongoing security measures being taken in Malkangiri district to combat Naxalism with senior officials, including SP Satish Kumar Gajbhiye and would hold talks with the Government on construction of the Motu bridge over the River Saveri, providing better road communication facilities and ensuring socio-economic development of the tribal people in the district.

Later, Nanda also garlanded the statues of the ‘saheed’ jawans on the police guesthouse premises.

Additional DGP cum-Police Housing Board Chairman Prakash Mishra and Director (Intelligence) M M Praharaj accompanied him. Earlier, Nanda air-dashed to Malkangiri in a special copter.

Parlakhemundi: The DGP also made a whirlwind tour of Gajapati district on Tuesday.

He was accompanied by the Intelligence Director and Police Housing Corporation CMD P K Mishra. They reviewed the law and order situation, including Naxal activities. Here too, the visit was kept secret. The DGP also visited some pockets.

Overseas militants and security concerns

G. Anand

Strife in Sri Lanka to have a bearing on State

The last part of a three-part series.

Thiruvananthapuram: The strife in Sri Lanka and the presence of Islamic terrorist groups in the Maldives have a bearing on Kerala’s security, official sources say.

Militant organisations fighting the Sri Lankan government are believed to be procuring fuel, chemicals such as ammonium nitrate (a fertilizer that could also be used for making bombs), medicines, vehicle parts, welding equipment, tools and metal balls (for possible use as projectiles in improvised explosive devices) and other articles from Kerala.

Official sources say the stuff, procured in bulk through certain business fronts, is ferried in fishing boats to militant-controlled territories in Sri Lanka. The same sea routes are used for smuggling heroin (sourced from across India’s border) to Sri Lanka. So far, there is no evidence of Kerala’s coastline being used for arms smuggling.

Maldivian links

Intelligence officials say there is the possibility of anti-Maldivian government elements, particularly operatives of Jamaat-ul-Muslimeen (a Maldives-based terrorist group) seeking refuge in Kerala or using its territory to plan operations against the island nation’s rulers.

Mooas Inas, a Maldivian national accused of triggering an explosive device in the island nation in September 2007, is suspected to have visited Thiruvananthapuram in 2005 before crossing over to Pakistan to meet leaders of a terrorist outfit. In 2005, the police arrested and deported a 30-year-old Maldivian national, Ibrahim Asif, on the charge of attempting to procure arms and explosives from Kerala.

Intelligence officials are also concerned about the possible presence of foreign terrorist elements in Kerala. In the past 10 years, 41 Pakistani nationals are reported to have gone “out of view” in Malappuram district.

Officials say a majority of them, who had come to visit their relatives, are believed to have left the country without informing the district police. However, at least a few of them could have migrated to the Gulf and other foreign countries after fraudulently procuring Indian passports.

Left extremism

The police are concerned that Left extremists fleeing the ongoing anti-naxalite action in Andhra Pradesh could seek refuge in Kerala.

The CPI (ML) Naxalbari and CPI (Maoist) have been active in Kerala for the past 10 years, allegedly through front organisations such as Porattam and Ayyankali Pada.

However, their pockets of influence are very limited and do not pose a threat to the State security as of now. Some of their activists had tried to exploit the discontent of a section of people in Vypeen island who were distressed over the lack of easy availability of drinking water. But, they could not make any inroads there.

The State police have stepped up their vigil along Kerala’s porous borders. Migrant workers in plantation areas and urban centres are being verified. Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has said the police will verify people from other regions living in Kerala without intruding into their privacy.

Govt lets down Naxal victim

Thursday January 24 2008 11:06 IST
Bidyadhar Choudhury

KORAPUT: Jariff Ahamed has lost all hope of a decent living for his family. Disabled by Naxal bullets and let down by the Government, the deputy subedar of OSAP (retd) curses himself that he is still alive and has become a liability.

All those promises by the government for free medical expenses and other help have been forgotten by one and all including Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. Ahamed retired on his hospital bed and till date has exhausted all his retirement benefits on treatment.

Ahamed suffered bullet injuries during the Naxal attack in Kalimela weekly market in June last year. Immediately he was flown to a Visakhapatnam hospital in a copter with the help of Malkangiri Police.

To support his medical expenses, Rs 2.2 lakh was released by the Orissa Police Relief Welfare Fund (OPRWF), which he would have to repay in instalments.

In the attack, Ahamed broke his hand and leg. With metal plates fixed on his leg, he was discharged from the hospital in July.

As per doctors’ advice, he would have to undergo check-ups once in two months. The hospital gave him a medical bill of Rs 23,714 for reimbursement but the State Government only released Rs 11,992.

This amount was later recovered from him towards OPRWF advance as per the norms. Simultaneously the pending amount of Rs 65,219 was deducted by the Government as his unutilised leave benefit.

At present, he has to spend for his check-ups from his pocket. The plates would be removed in 2009 which will make him poorer by another Rs 80,000 which includes doctor’s fees and medicines.

Answering a question on Ahamed’s condition by local MLA Taraprasad Bahinipati in the Assembly, the Chief Minister had promised that the Government would bear all his medical expenses.

He has not received any compensation so far. “No help has reached me yet,” a pained Ahamed told this paper. “Such an attitude of the Government would discourage cops from working in Naxal-affected areas.”

Reeling under funds crunch, Ahamed only hopes the Government would give some compensation on compassionate grounds.

Meanwhile, OSAP Commandant Susanta Sekhar Panda said a fresh proposal has been sent to headquarters in connection with Ahamed’s medical expenditure.

Anti-naxal police team sent to Raipur

24 Jan 2008, 0512 hrs IST,TNN

CHANDRAPUR: Two police teams from the anti naxal cell of Chandrapur and Gadchiroli districts have been sent to Raipur to interrogate two naxal commanders Meena and Malti, who were arrested in Raipur in Chhattisgarh on Tuesday along with a huge cache of arms and cash. Police suspect their connection with naxal activities in Chandrapur and Gadchiroli. Besides, a freelance journalist, his son and son-in-law, too were arrested for helping the women naxalites, police sources said. Sources said that Meena is the wife of a naxal divisional commander in Chhattisgarh, while Malti is the wife of CPI-Maoist spokesperson Gudsa Usendi.

Quoting senior police personnel, sources said that both the arrest of naxalites and recovery of arms from Raipur were linked. "From Bhilai, police personnel in plainclothes trailed a car owned by the journalist and carrying weapons with both women passengers to Raipur," sources said. A senior police official involved in the operations said when the occupants realised that the police were on their trail, they get down at a Raipur locality and dumped six bagsful of weapons and wireless sets. Subsequently, the women left the spot on a motorcycle, leaving the weapons behind.

After another brief chase, the cops then arrested the women. They were taken to the residence of Malti in Bhilai steel city. From there, 14 weapons and other equipment were seized. "Of the nine pistols, one was German-made and others were manufactured in Scotland, 5 were country-made pistols, about Rs 6 lakh cash, one wireless set and 11 mobile sets were seized along with computers and naxal literature," sources said.

Sources said their connection with Chandrapur came to the fore when Meena, during the course of interrogation divulged about her residential address in Chandrapur. Raipur police immediately sought help of Chandrapur police to cross check the information available with them. "The address in Ambedkarnagar locality along the by-pass road here turned out to be a false one, after an inspection conducted by the police team.

However, suspecting their connection with naxal activities in Chandrapur, it was decided to send a two-member team from anti naxal cell to interrogate the women at Raipur. Gadchiroli police is also sending a team to Raipur for the same purpose," said sources. The members of the team who were sent for interrogation are fluent in Telugu, it is reported.

More arrests in Maoists arms case

Press Trust Of India
Raipur, January 23, 2008
First Published: 23:02 IST(23/1/2008)
Last Updated: 23:04 IST(23/1/2008)

A Kolkata-based publisher was on Wednesday arrested in Raipur for his alleged links with Maoists, police said. "A publisher from Kolkata, Asit Sen Gupta was arrested after huge amount of literature related to the banned naxal organisation CPI (Maoist) and other things were recovered from his house from Tikrapara area of Raipur," a top police official told PTI here.

Sen Gupta's was apprehended and his house was raided after the women naxal commanders, arrested yesterday revealed their links with him, they said.

Meanwhile, Maoist spokesman Gudsa Usendi's wife Malti and another woman naxal commander Meena were on Wednesday sent to police custody by a local court in Raipur till January 29 as police said they need to recover a couple of things.

Freelance journalist Prafulla Jha, who was also arrested yesterday, was taken to police custody till January 25, they added.

Police conducted raids at a couple of other places today after 96 fire arms, including nine foreign manufactured pistols, and 23 wireless sets were recovered from Raipur and Durg district in last two days.

Plot against Chhattisgarh politicians unearthed

Wednesday, 23 January , 2008, 17:32

Raipur: The arrest of two senior female Maoist guerrillas has helped the police in Chhattisgarh to unearth a plot aimed at killing political leaders in the state, police sources said Wednesday.

The authorities have drawn the conclusion following the seizure of documents and maps from a Maoist hideout in the state capital.

A police source told IANS that a map of Raipur city, with red colour markings, and of several politicians' houses, including that of Chief Minister Raman Singh, indicated that they were intended to be targets of the Maoists.

The police found Maoist literature at the Raipur house.

"The raid has stunned us. We found a diary and notes with names and details of dozens of so-called intellectuals... We never thought that the Maoists had such wide contacts in Raipur and other cities," the source said.

The two women were among four people arrested Tuesday and have been identified as Malti Usendi and Meena.

This followed the busting of a hideout in Raipur's Dangania area Monday night where the police took in their possession 91 home made pistols and 26 foreign-made wireless sets. These had been stored in eight bags.

The source said that the women's arrests had exposed the Maoist urban contacts in Raipur and the nearby city of Bhilai as well as other urban pockets.

The arrested women were allegedly acting as Maoist couriers and receiving arms coming in from various locations and passing them on to insurgents, said a police official who did not want to be named.

Malti, 28, is the wife of Gudsa Usendi, spokesman of the banned Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist). Meena, also 28, is a zonal-level Maoist leader.

Police also arrested Raipur-based Prafulla Jha, 60, who was described as a freelance journalist, and his son-in-law Vinod Chandrakar for their alleged links to the seized arms.

Gudsa Usendi issues statements on behalf of the outfit's Dandkaranya Special Zonal Committee, which runs a de facto parallel government in the vast forested, mineral-rich interior areas of Bastar.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Maoist bloggers seek release of People’s March editor

Wednesday January 23 2008 09:53 IST
Express News Service

T’PURAM: As the wait of arrested Maoist leader and People’s March editor P Govindankutty for bail continues, the human rights activists standing for his cause have found unexpected support from different parts of the world.

The Communist Party of Greece (Marxist-Leninist) strongly condemned the arrest of Govindankutty and demanded his immediate and unconditional release.

In a statement issued on pro-Maoist websites and blogs, the party `expressed solidarity to Indian comrades and to the people of India who are being subjected to state terror by the Government Of India’.

“The governments and the imperialists all over the world are trying to gag the progressive and revolutionary individuals, organisations and parties. They are trying to keep the people in the dark, to stop them from organising themselves and fighting back,” said the statement issued by Chris Mais of the International bureau of CPG (ML).

The arrest of Govindankutty 33 days ago and his hunger strike in prison and medical college are hotly debated on blogs and websites.

The statement in, a hot site for the extreme leftists, also condemned the arrest of Govindankutty. It asked the government to allow People’s March to resume publication in the country.

There are blogs like maoist resistance, and goodmorningrev., which had also been debating the Govindankutty issue seriously. All information from the arrest to the progress of legal battle in the Kerala High Court are available on these sites.

“The support we receive from human rights activists across the globe is really soothening. We expect that the High Court would deliver an order that will uphold the human rights on Wednesday,” said an activist who is part of the team that carries out the legal battle in defence of Govindankutty.

Centre to retain its forces till March 15

Wednesday January 23 2008 10:23 IST

BHUBANESWAR: Centre has agreed to retain all the seven battalions of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) deployed in Kandhamal district till March 15.

Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil assured this to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik at New Delhi on Tuesday. The Union Home Minister also agreed to sanction five more India Reserve (IR) battalions for the State.

Raising of these battalions will not only enable the State Government to combat Naxalite and extremist activities effectively but also provide substantial employment opportunities to local youth.

Naveen demanded enhancement of allocation under the police modernisation scheme for the State from Rs 26.5 crore to Rs 60 crore and special grant of Rs 30 crore for the training resource centre (TRC) with special operations group (SOG) headquarters under construction at Chandaka here.

The TRC is being developed as a permanent training centre to counter terrorism, jungle warfare and anti-extremist operations. For this, Patil agreed to enhance the allocation appropriately.

Seeking Centre’s assistance in terms of manpower and financial resources to strengthen its internal security system Naveen demanded that more districts be included under the security related expenditure (SRE) scheme for effective control of Naxalite activities.

Allocation of funds should be raised from Rs 9 crore to Rs 15 crore with a special focus on Malkangiri and Rayagada districts.

Naveen sought early release of 1.87 lakh tonne of foodgrains for undertaking relief employment in the districts which were affected by floods in 2006.

Patil agreed to release cash in lieu of foodgrains to undertake relief employment work in the affected districts.

Masks for Central force to combat ultras

Statesman News Service
BHUBANESWAR, Jan. 22: The Centre has reportedly agreed to sanction deployment of five more platoons of the India Reserve Battalions to help Orissa combat Left-wing extremism.Union home minister Mr Shivraj Patil agreed to the proposal submitted by chief minister Mr Naveen Patnaik when the two met at New Delhi today. Deployment of additional platoons of the battalion for the state would also provide substantial employment support to the local youth, Mr Patnaik said. Mr Patil has also agreed to enhance allocations under the Police Modernisation Scheme and for the Training Resource Centre of the Special Operation Group.
Mr Patnaik had sought increased allocations under the modernisation scheme from the present level of Rs 26.50 crore to Rs 60 crore and a special grant of Rs 30 crore for the TRC with the SOG at Chandaka. The TRC is being developed as a permanent training resource centre for counter-terrorism jungle warfare and anti-extremist operations.
He urged Mr Patil to extend the tenure of the CRPF personnel camped in trouble-torn Kandhamal district till 15 March. Mr Patnaik urged the Centre to assist Orissa in terms of manpower and financial resources to strengthen its internal security system. He demanded that under the Security Related Expenditure scheme, more districts be included for control of Naxalite activities in the state and allocation of funds may be raised from Rs 9 crore to Rs 15 crore, with special focus on Malkangiri and Rayagada districts.
Mr Patil is said to have offered cash in lieu of the additional foodgrain allotment sought by the chief minister for undertaking relief work in the districts, affected by floods in 2006.
The state government has made all preparatory arrangements at the field-levels so that the working season can be utilised for providing labour intensive work in the affected areas, officials said.

Top MNC under scanner after seizure of wireless sets from Naxals

R Krishna Das / Raipur January 23, 2008

A leading multinational manufacturer of sound and wireless radio communications has come under the scanner of security agencies after Chhattisgarh police recovered the biggest-ever haul of arms and wireless sets in the state capital last night.

Besides 91 countrymade pistols, 26 wireless sets, an equal number of batteries and 22 batteries of small wireless sets were seized.

The sets and batteries carry the trademark of a leading multinational company that manufactures car electronics, communication equipment and home electronics.

“It is illegal to sell wireless sets without licence and approval from the home ministry,” a senior police official told Business Standard. Only a detailed probe would reveal how the Naxalites procured so many wireless sets, he said.

'Bihar, Chh'garh, J'khand failed to contain Naxals'

Sahara Samay

Posted at Wednesday, 23 January 2008 09:01 IST
Chhatarpur (MP), Jan 23: The governments of Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand have failed to contain Naxalism despite all possible support extended to them Union Minister of State for Home Sriprakash Jaiswal told reporters.

"While Naxalism in the country has weakened, governments of Bihar, Chhatisgarh and Jharkhand have failed to tackle the menace effectively," Jaiswal said.

He was addressing a press conference jointly with Union Minister of State for Personnel and Public Grievances Suresh Pachouri.

The minister also lauded Andhra Pradesh government for containing naxal activities.

Jaiswal advised the other states affected by the violence to follow the steps taken by the Congress-ruled southern state.

Pachouri rejected Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan's allegations about "stepmotherly" treatment to Madhya Pradesh by the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre.

The Centre had extended maximum assistance to the BJP-ruled state which was "neglected" by the NDA regime.

"Before making the allegations, the state government must utilise the assistance provided by the Centre.... The state has failed to properly utilise funds given by the UPA government under various schemes," he said.

Rise in incidents of Naxalites targeting railway property


Patna, Jan 22 Growing incidents of attacks by proscribed CPI-Maoist on vital installations of the Railways in Bihar and Jharkhand during 2007 has forced the authorities to take steps for strengthening the intelligence network and start the process for appointing over 20,000 RPF men.

According to figures made available by the East Central Railway office in Hajipur and the state police headquarters here, armed Naxalites blew up railway installations, including railway lines, cabins and stations in the Naxal-hit Bihar and Jharkhand areas at 10 and seven places, respectively, during the period under review and destroyed property worth several crores of rupees.

In 2006, the Naxalites had executed such destructive operations damaging railway property at four places each in Bihar and Jharkhand, whereas the Naxalites had targeted railway property at two each places in the two states during the corresponding period previous year, official sources said.

When contacted, the Railway Minister, Mr Lalu Prasad said law and order was a state subject and the Railways used to provide assistance to the government railway police in these states for protecting the property of the railways.

Expressing serious concern over alleged failure of the state governments in checking the activities of the Naxalites that had already caused heavy damage to railway property, Mr Prasad said he had taken up the matter with the Union Home Minister, Mr Shivraj Patil seeking to issue directives to the affected six states to strengthen the intelligence network.

Besides, the Railways had plans to appoint over 20,000 Railway Protection Force personnel, proposals for which have been processed to the Union finance ministry, he said adding as soon as the proposals were cleared, steps would be taken for recruitment.

Giving figures about the violence perpetrated by the Naxalites during 2007, official sources said on February 27, 2007, the Naxalites had blown up railway line between Ghanauri and Urain railway stations on the Jamalpur section of the East Central Railways and taken away the telephone from a cabin.

Similarly, on April 8, 2007, the rebels killed two jawans and injured three others on board 213 up Howrah-Mokama passenger train near Simutalla railway station on the same section and took away two carbines, one SLR, one pistol, besides 200 rounds of ammunition before fleeing after pulling the chain at Narganjo station in Bihar.

On June 19, 2007, the Naxalites attacked GRP personnel on 3020 down Bagh Express between Badagopal and Dighawara railway stations and killed two police jawans in Bihar. They had also looted one SLR, three rifles and 90 rounds of ammunition from them, the sources said.

Apart from these major incidents, Maoists had blown up tracks and tampered with the signal systems at other places in Bihar and Jharkhand, sources added.

Analysis: India chides Maoist-hit states

Published: Jan. 23, 2008 at 10:41 AM
UPI Correspondent

NEW DELHI, Jan. 23 (UPI) -- India's federal Interior Ministry has chided the administrations of Maoist-hit states accusing them of not being serious about redefining priorities, including the formulation of a strategy to quell the violent rebellion.

"As the country has been fighting with the Maoist problem, the fact remains that just two districts of a state accounted for 27 percent of the violence," an Interior Ministry report on internal security said. "It reflects the callousness on part of the authorities, as due seriousness and alignment of priorities, including formulation of counter-strategies and tactical planning has not been implemented to take on … (rebels) in their stronghold."

According to government figures, 186 Indian districts have been affected by Maoist violence; of these, two -- Dantewada and Bijapur in Chhattisgarh state -- accounted for 27 percent of violence reported last year. The report said 39 percent of all incidents related to Maoist violence was reported in Chhattisgarh.

The figures showed that security forces killed 129 Maoists from Jan. 1 to Nov. 30, 2007, in comparison to 239 rebel casualties in the same period in 2006. Instead of a decline, the number of security forces killed by Maoists surged from 133 in 2006 to 214 in 2007; 181 security personnel were killed in Chhattisgarh alone. Rebels killed 632 people, including police personnel from Jan. 1 to Nov. 30, 2007, as against 634 deaths in the same period in 2006.

During the last year, five Indian states -- Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal -- accounted for more than 91 percent of the violence. Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand accounted for about 70 percent of the total violence.

Expressing concern over the casualties among security forces, the Interior Ministry said there was lack of vigil on the part of the police forces and rebels exhibited better planning and alertness in their operations.

"The twin figures of an upsurge in the attrition of the security forces at the hands of Maoists and simultaneous downward spiral in the casualties of the left-wing … (rebels) are matters of serious concern," said Interior Secretary Madhukar Gupta.

Last year Maoists targeted infrastructure such as electricity, communication lines and railways. At the behest of the federal government, various departments allocated huge financial assistance for various development projects being undertaken by government and nongovernmental agencies in poor and tribal areas, where Maoists have most support.

To keep people away from the developmental initiatives, Maoists targeted the projects and organized people's courts in affected areas to create an impression of a crippled administration.

Gupta last month told Maoist-affected states to consider these strategies while formulating counter-strategies against the rebels. The federal government also advised the states to take another look at their planning and formulate new priorities.

"Security-oriented action against the Maoists will not be enough and development and good governance will go a long way in countering the menace," said Ajai Sahani, executive director of the Institute of Conflict Management, a non-governmental think tank working on the terror-related issues.

Barring Andhra Pradesh state, where focused police action has resulted in a fall in Maoist violence, no other Maoist-affected state witnessed a decline in rebel violence.

According to the Interior Ministry, Maoists in Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand states have received training in handling sophisticated arms at a training center located in the Chhattisgarh-Andhra Pradesh border, which is described as a "red corridor."

Indian security and intelligence agencies say the rebels also have reach and hideouts in smaller cities in poor states and are contemplating strikes at installations owned by state or federal governments. The agencies have also warned state police to up the vigil at government buildings.

"Like forests provide safe hideouts to Naxalites in tribal areas, cities also provide them cover," Interior Minister Shivraj Patil said, referring to the Indian term for Maoists. "Taking advantage of this, they plan to target major installations in cities."