Friday, June 13, 2008

BIHAR : Farewell To Arms

Hidden political agendas might explain the surrender of high profile bandits in Bihar, reports ANAND ST DAS

Giving up Bhagar Yadav surrenders in West Champaran
Photo: SN Sharma
SITTING IN the sprawling campus of his house at Sant Ghat in Bettiah town, Amar Yadav, 29, speaks in a confident tone. “My father’s return to the mainstream has silenced my political opponents. It would be easier for me to contest and win the upcoming elections,” says the son of Bhagar Yadav, one of Bihar’s most wanted bandits, who surrendered after eluding the police for three decades.

Bhagar’s surrender on May 8 is seen as the most important in a series of recent overtures by some of Bihar’s most notorious bandits, each carrying a hefty cash award on their head. Basudev Yadav alias Tiwari, another dreaded bandit virtually running a parallel government in many interior pockets of north Bihar, surrendered along with two of his accomplices before the SP of Bagaha on May 24. Bipin Issar alias Bipin Singh, another wanted bandit operating in Darbhanga district, had surrendered before the Darbhanga SP the previous day. Bhagar was wanted in 106 criminal cases — including murder, abduction, ransom and robberies. He carried a cash reward of Rs 3 lakh on his head. Basudev Yadav of Bagha, wanted in about 100 criminal cases, had a prize of Rs 2 lakh on his head. Bipin was wanted in about 12 criminal cases.

But, even as the government claims that measures like relentless police operations and speedy delivery of justice through fast-track courts have forced the bandits to surrender, observers say the surrenders would hardly bring any major reduction in crime and that there are hidden political agendas behind several of them.

Bhagar Yadav, 55, ran his operations in north Bihar and eastern Uttar Pradesh districts, mainly along the Indo-Nepal border. His gang, the Jungle Party, had been killing, looting and abducting people for ransom for nearly three decades. Bhagar started out as a poor cattle-grazer and took to crime by committing a dacoity in 1977. He became notorious in 1984 when he gunned down the killers of his elder brother; the dreaded dacoit Lachhan Yadav. Later, he set up a bust of his slain elder brother in Balua Rampurwa village. Bhagar’s surrender before the West Champaran district SP KS Anupam had all the ingredients of a well-planned political rally. His son Amar had got a rostrum constructed and reportedly spent some Rs 40,000 for the decoration of the entire ceremony area in the Udaipur jungles near Bettiah town. Over half of the estimated 5,000 people who gathered to witness the surrender were political supporters of Amar. As per his wish, Bhagar was given about 10 plainclothes policemen for his security a couple of days before the surrender. And just as the fugitive had insisted, all these constables were Brahmins by caste.

The crowd was made to chant ‘Bhagar Yadav Zindabad’, and Bhagar was allowed to worship for three-hours at a Kali temple in front of his mistress Sunarpati Devi’s house. He later threw a feast for thousands of poor villagers who had gathered there. The police, in their eagerness to get the don to surrender, apparently succumbed to almost every condition Bhagar and his son placed on the table. There was no effort by the large police contingent to arrest several dreaded members of Bhagar’s gang who were present all through the ceremony. Many villagers said they were disappointed, as these gang members whom the police recognised very well, were “left free to become a Bhagar Yadav in their own capacity”.

Bhagar was also allowed to address the gathering. He publicly repeated his allegation that local MLA Baidyanath Mahto of the ruling JD(U), who lost his ministership in Nitish Kumar’s cabinet reshuffle in April, had been supplying firearms to the Sanjay Yadav gang. Bhagar and Sanjay Yadav have been rivals for about two decades. Mahto defeated Amar Yadav in two successive Assembly elections. Amar has remained zilla parishad chairman for five years and is now an elected member of the zilla parishad. His wife Renu Devi is a block chairman in Bettiah.

Many West Champaran residents believe Bhagar’s surrender was to further Amar’s political interests. Amar lost the last Assembly polls by a margin of just 4,300 votes.

“It was part of a secret deal between Bhagar and the Nitish government. Amar Yadav has good links with the RJD and has the support of RJD’s Bettiah MP Raghunath Jha, but there are chances he would get a JD(U) ticket to contest the next Assembly elections,” said a Bettiah resident close to Amar Yadav. Bhagar had managed to gain popularity among a section of the poor by helping girls from poor families get married.

Although much of the credit for weakening Bhagar’s gang goes to former Bettiah SP BS Meena, who was transferred in March, the surrender did not happen during his tenure. Sources said Meena did not agree to Bhagar’s demand for a grand surrender ceremony. “Meena got Bhagar ready to surrender, but did not agree to his demands even though the government gave the nod. This was one reason why Meena was shifted,” said a district official.

The fact that the bandit surrendered only a handful of arms and with only two gang members is giving people nightmares over the possibility that he might rule from behind the bars. Bhagar is still feared in West and East Champaran districts because nearly 20 of his gang members are still active in various areas and possess huge numbers of arms and weapons. He still owns over 100 acres of agricultural land that he captured from villagers and controls large tracts on both banks of the Gandak river. Sources said the bandit also owns several sugarcane crushing factories and has accumulated several crores of rupees, much of which he has lent to businessmen in both Bihar and Nepal.

THE BIHAR government’s policy on surrender of wanted criminals and Maoists has several rehabilitation incentives for the outlaws, but these are hardly publicised by the government. “Apart from an immediate release of Rs 10,000 for each surrendering outlaw, the rehabilitation package involves a grant of Rs 2 lakh. Still, it has been a proven an uphill task for the police to bring the gangsters around,” said IG (Operations) SK Bhardwaj. In most surrenders, there have been long delay in the release of the grant money and the rehabilitation package. Both Bhagar and Basudev, the 65-year-old dacoit who surrendered before Bagaha SP Vikas Baibhav in a grand ceremony, are yet to receive the entitlements.

While the recent surrenders have made big news because of the criminal history of some bandits, most of the criminal gangs operating in Bihar today seem uninterested in the surrender policy. According to official figures, only 13 bandits and 29 Maoists surrendered last year while only nine bandits and 19 Maoists have surrendered so far this year, even though some 30 gangs are reportedly operating in East and West Champaran districts alone.

“These surrenders, notwithstanding the controversies arising out of them, are a welcome change in Bihar,” says Dr Saibal Gupta of the Patna-based Asian Development Research Institute. Gupta felt that the surrenders reflect the success of the State as an independent social mediator. “But the process must continue till the last gang’s surrender, only then will it be a real success for Bihar.” •


From Tehelka Magazine, Vol 5, Issue 24, Dated June 21, 2008

NMDC resumes Chhattisgarh mining after a week

Raipur, June 13 (IANS) The state-owned National Mineral Development Corp Ltd (NMDC) Friday resumed iron ore mining in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Dantewada district after a week-long forced stoppage of work. Mining activity had come to a halt since June 5 early hours when Maoist rebels cut off power supplies in the state’s vast southern Bastar region that includes Dantewada, home to one of the largest and finest iron ore deposits in the world.

NMDC suffered a loss of at least Rs.1 billion during the week-long blackout that followed, a company official said.

Power supply to four districts - Dantewada, Bijapur, Narayanpur and Bastar - was restored late Thursday evening.

“Iron ore mining resumed in the Bailadilla hills in Dantewada Friday morning, though excavation work began partially Thursday night,” NMDC spokesman Jai Prakash told IANS over phone from the company’s Hyderabad headquarters.

Supplies to domestic steel makers, and to Chinese and Japanese importers had to be stopped, leading to an estimated loss of Rs.1 billion, Prakash said.

NMDC produces a little over 20 million tonnes iron ore per annum from the three Bailadilla deposits that account of about 75-80 percent of its total annual production.

Essar Steel, which has an iron ore beneficiation plant in the Bailadilla hills, was also attacked June 9 during the blackout by armed insurgents, who set on fire 19 company vehicles besides damaging equipment.

Like NMDC, Essar too resumed supply of the ore from its 8 million tonnes per annum plant to its pellet plant in Visakhapatnam Friday morning.

The iron ore slurry is pumped through a 267-km pipeline to the pellet plant.

In April too, insurgents had set ablaze 53 trucks at Essar’s beneficiation complex.

Lights back in Bastar


Raipur, June 12: Working tirelessly in the heart of the Naxalite den for a week, Chhattisgarh State Electricity Board (CSEB) finally restored power supply in Bastar today.

The region had plunged into darkness after rebels bombed a power tower near Barsoor in Dantewada.

After eight days of blackout since June 5 morning, people of Bastar heaved a sigh of relief and celebrated after bulbs finally glowed today evening.

Though the administration managed to restore supply immediately for essential services through generators, people had to struggle for every drop of water, as pumps could not be operated without power.

“The power supply was finally restored, thanks to the efforts of 160 workers and senior officials of the board. They worked round-the-clock to re-erect the tower,” said CSEB chairman Rajib Ranjan.

The chairman personally supervised the entire operation.

Ranjan said it was a daunting task for the board and its employees. “But officials and employees showed exemplary courage and completed the work within record time,” Ranjan said.

The pocket near Barsoor, where rebels had blown up the tower, is completely under red control. Ranjan said that no civilian had entered the area in the past 21 years. Besides, inclement weather and dense forests made the work even tougher for the power board officials, the top official added.

While the team was moving through the area, the rebels had ambushed employees and fired at them. The security cover and presence of additional force paved way for the power board employees to complete the work on time.

The production in the National Mineral Development Corporation and Essar’s iron ore plant located in Dantewada was restored soon after power supply resumed in the area.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

All you want to know about terrorism in India

Dr Anil A Athale

June 11, 2008

After the Jaipur terror attacks on May 13, we saw the routine that happens after every attack. There were VIP visits, compensation announced to the victims, politicians spoke of 'zero tolerance', television channels held the usual debates, the police announced imminent breakthroughs. Soon everything is forgotten, till the next terror attack. At which time, I am sure the same sequence will be repeated.

I have been a student of insurgency and terrorism for 24 years. At social gatherings when asked what I do for a living, my answer invariably provokes a flurry of questions, much to the annoyance of my better half (who glares and hints that I should stop holding forth on my pet topic and not 'spoil' the party). Here is my attempt to answer some of those frequently asked questions.

Why are attacks by Islamic groups called Islamist terrorism? Other terror groups like the LTTE (Tamil Tigers) or the IRA (Irish Republican Army) have Hindus or Christians but are not called Hindu or Christian terrorists?

It is undoubtedly true that there are other terrorists as well, for instance the Naxalites or Maoists. The reason why the adjective 'Islamists' is used is that no other terror group invokes religious sanction or quotes religious texts to justify their acts. In fact, the Tamil Tigers has Hindus as well as Christians (their spokesperson for many years was Anton Balasingham, a Christian). Neither has the IRA nor Tamil Tigers ever quoted any religious scriptures to justify their actions, the Islamists have and continue to do so. The link between religious places and schools to these acts, is also well established.

Finally, the Islamist terrorists themselves have time and again openly admitted the religious nature of their ultimate goal -- Islamisation. It would be dishonest if this reality is ignored.

What about State terrorism?

It is true that the State also uses force to deal with revolts and violence and against criminals. But in a democracy with a judiciary and rule of law, the use of force by the State is accountable and has to be within the bounds of law. At times individuals do transgress those limits, but those are aberrations. Use of force by a State to enforce law cannot be equated with State terrorism, unless that State has a policy of genocide or is dictatorial like Hitler's [Images] Germany [Images] or Stalin's Soviet Union.

Unfortunately social activists and champions of human rights forget that it is the legitimate function of the State to use force. If the State abdicates this responsibility then we are inviting anarchy and in words of Hobbes, a 16th century English philosopher, a situation of war of every one against every one and human life 'nasty, brutish and short.'

You are biased, what about the terrorism of the Shiv Sena, Bajrang Dal etc?

These are indeed organisations that believe in violent means and must be dealt under the law. But at worst, these are extremists and militants, like militant trade unions for example. The shallow coverage by the media has created the confusion about definition of terrorism and who is a terrorist. There is tendency to lump together terms like militants, insurgents, extremists, fundamentalists and terrorists.

While all the variety of people fighting for some cause or other may at times indulge in terrorism, a terrorist is one whose primary aim is to cause maximum destruction. In that sense strictly speaking, when a Kashmiri extremist attacks a soldier, it is wrong to call it a terrorist attack, it is part of an insurgency. We must be clear about this difference.

A terrorist is an individual who carries out a terrorist act. A terrorist act is one in which totally unconnected persons are targeted and killed. Terrorism is random violence that makes no distinction between people and promotes fear. It is no accident that in the Jaipur attack as well as elsewhere, many Muslims lost their lives.

It is a fallacy to claim that everything is fair in love and war. Even in war there are written and unwritten rules. The terrorists do not follow them. For instance in war, civilians are not deliberately targeted (they still die as collateral damage) while terrorists, for instance in Beslan in Russia [Images] chose a school or local trains in Mumbai.

While there are groups and organisations that are militant, fundamentalist and violence prone, they have not yet graduated to earn the 'terrorist' tag. If the State fails to curb minority terrorism then the majority may well begin to have its own terrorist organisations.

If we use violence against terrorists then are we not betraying our Gandhian legacy?

Gandhian methods of non-violent struggle were successful against the British colonialists. But the British were a civilised people. British liberals like Edmund Burke were in favour of Indian independence as early as in 1773 (Burke's speeches in the British parliament on the Regulating Act). To assume universality of success of these methods for all times to come is false.

Did the non-violent Jews survive Hitler? Closer home, in Gandhi's lifetime itself, in October 1947, it was force that saved the Kashmir valley from Pakistani-backed raiders. Even more telling, the same non-violent movement in the Portuguese colony of Goa [Images], failed in 1956-1957. Goa was liberated by force in 1961.

An oft quoted Gandhian phrase is that if all were to follow an eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth, then the world would go blind. The counter to that is that if only some follow this and others don't then it is the non-violent who would go blind while the rogues will rule the world.

Colonel Dr Anil Athale (retd) is former joint director, war studies, ministry of defence, and co-ordinator of the Pune-based Initiative for Peace and Disarmament

Naxalites burn 20 Essar trucks


Raipur, June 9: Naxalites today attacked an iron-ore beneficiation plant of Essar steel in Dantewada district on Monday evening and set 20 vehicles on fire.

Twenty-four heavily-armed rebels raided the Essar facility around 8pm and sneaked into the plant, located near Kirandul in Dantewada district, 350km south of Raipur, by firing at the workers randomly. However, no casualty was reported.

The Essar steel pumps iron ore slurry through a 267km pipeline to the pellet plant from its iron ore beneficiation plant. This is the second attack on the Essar plant in two months. Rebels had attacked the same plant on April 25 and set more than 50 trucks on fire.

Sources reported that after entering the plant premises, rebels overpowered the employees; snatched their mobile phones and later set the 20 trucks parked on the premises. They took diesel meant for the vehicles to do their deed.

The exact number of the trucks and machines damaged in the attack could not be ascertained, as police had not reached the spot, which was still under the control of Naxalites’ fire, till the time this report was filed.

Sources said that company executives have stated that the plant had about 20-25 trucks parked outside the plant at the time of the attack.

Senior police officers started to mobilise forces soon after receiving information about the attack.

Police forces was deployed in and around Barsoor before the visit of chief minister Raman Singh, who landed there to inspect the on-going repair of power transmission tower that rebels had bombed on Thursday, plunging the entire Bastar region (and 1,500 villages and four district headquarters) into darkness.

Threat from Maoists may delay Rs2,000 crore DVC expansion

Utpal Bhaskar
New Delhi

Stiff opposition from Naxalites may delay the expansion of Damodar Valley Corporation’s (DVC) Rs2,000 crore power plant at Chanderpura in Jharkhand, which is expected to ease chronic power shortage in the region.

“There is a lot of threat to our engineers from Naxalites,” said K. Ravi Kumar, chairman and managing director of Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (Bhel), which won an engineering, procurement and construction contract for the 500MW expansion project in June 2004 on a turnkey basis.

Hurdles aplenty: Bhel chairman and managing director K. Ravi Kumar says there are problems with land acquisition as well.

“There are problems in land acquisition as well. Until and unless these are taken care of, we cannot go ahead with the project,” Kumar said.

Bhel’s project office was burnt down thrice, allegedly by local people who had the backing of Maoist rebels. The company’s project managers have been threatened and manhandled several times, said a Bhel executive, who did not wish to be identified.
However, Pravin Kumar Toppo, deputy commissioner of Bokaro district, said, “Though a large part of the district is Naxalite-affected, the charge of them stalling work at Chanderpura is baseless. There were some problems with Bhel that involved locals and were on account of employment issues. All that was later sorted out.”

Asim Kumar Burman, chairman of DVC, did not respond to telephone calls asking for comment.

Chanderpura thermal power station, located in the Bokaro district of Jharkhand, currently has an installed capacity of 390MW.

DVC has a power generation capacity of 2,604MW through its thermal and hydroelectric power projects.

Projects in Jharkhand have had their fair share of problems due to Naxalite threats. Mint had reported on 4 July that the government’s proposed 4,000MW power project in the state was under threat from them.

“This will affect power projects in the state to a great extent. It will affect coal mining for the projects as well, be it the coal pit-head projects, or even for those projects for which the coal is transported outside the state,” said Anish De, chief executive officer of Mercados Asia, an energy consulting firm.

Jharkhand has large coal reserves, making it an attractive destination for power companies. India has 256 billion tonnes of coal reserves, of which around 455 million tonnes are mined every year. Of this, Jharkhand accounts for the highest concentration of coal reserves at 28.95% of the total, followed by Orissa at 24.60%.
The Maoists, also known as Naxalites, routinely call strikes, attack government property, and target industrial projects.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has described the Maoist rebellion, which spans many states, as the single biggest threat to the country’s internal security

WEST BENGAL : This time, violence could spread to plains

10 Jun 2008, 0340 hrs IST, Arnab Ganguly,TNN

SILIGURI/KOLKATA: At the peak of the Gorkhaland movement, Siliguri and the rest of north Bengal plains watched from a safe distance the gory battle in the Hills. Two decades later, with the Gorkhaland demand revived, these plains may no longer be bystanders.

For Gorkha Janamukti Morcha's Bimal Gurung, the indefinite strike call is not just another showdown between GJM and the Left Front government. It is an opportunity to flex muscles in the plains, mobilize supporters as well as arm-twist the government.

The inclusion of Siliguri in the proposed Gorkhaland has only made the situation more tense, making Bengalis living in Siliguri insecure and even ready to fight back.

Insecurity-induced violence is almost imminent. Groups such as Jana Jagran Manch and Jana Chetana Manch have emerged in the plains to oppose GJM and have started targeting Nepali-speaking people.

At least 16 people were injured on Sunday at Bagdogra and Naxalbari. A backlash from Bimal Gurung and his henchmen is only a matter of time. So far none from GJM have spoken against Bengalis and there has been no attack on Bengalis in
the Hills. Gorkha Janamukti Morcha has instead tried to go out of its way to appear friendly to Bengalis, bringing in some Bengali-speaking people for a rally near Siliguri on May 7.

The flashpoint for the present turmoil was the administration's (read CPM) refusal to give permission to GJM to hold a rally at Naxalbari. The CPI-ML (Liberation) and Left Front partner Forward Bloc both feel the administration was wrong in denying permission.

"It is a democratic party recognised by Election Commission. They should have been allowed to hold the rally. The way things are going it will take a turn for the worse," said Smritish Bhattacharya, Forward Bloc district secretary. The Naxalite parties too want the dialogue to continue.

"Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee might have rejected Gorkhaland demand but the scope for dialogue still remains. We are all for a peaceful settlement of the issue. This could be in the form of another state or more autonomy," said Abhijit Majumdar, CPI-ML (Liberation) state committee member.

Red army attacks water supply


Under fire

Raipur, June 9: Monsoon would start in Chhattisgarh soon, but Bastar seems to be facing uncertain days with irregular water supply.

For Naxalite rebels, after tampering with the region’s power supply, have focused their attention on the water supply.

The supply collapsed completely in parts of Bastar where civic authorities were supplying water through pipelines, after rebels blew up a transmission tower creating complete blackout in the areas on Thursday morning and left authorities helpless and not being able to operate pumps.

South-west monsoon enters Chhattisgarh through Bastar. Usually, monsoon breaks in Bastar from June 10 and the region covered by dense forests never faces water scarcity.

“In areas where water is usually supplied through pipelines, we have arranged for tankers,” said a senior administration official talking to The Telegraph.

Though the situation is not so grim in the rural pockets, the villagers are faced with a power problem.

On Thursday morning, rebels blew up a power transmission tower near Barsoor in Dantewada district that had plunged 1,500 villages and four district headquarters namely in Dantewada, Bijapur, Narayanpur and Bastar into darkness. The worst-hit places are the hospitals.

The administration is arranging generator sets to restore power supply in the hospitals to offer some respite to patients recuperating. Efforts are on to get power from neighbouring states of Orissa and Andhra Pradesh, but the path out is faced with technical and official problems.

The technical team of the Chhattisgarh State Electricity Board reached the tower amid heavy security and started repairs. Officials said normally it takes 10 days to re-erect a tower and restore supply, but at the rebel-hit area workers would try to complete all work at a war footing.

Country’s single largest iron ore producer and exporter — National Mineral Development Corporation — is set to incur heavy losses this fiscal, as production in its mining facilities located in Bailadila of Dantewada has come to a standstill.

Last year, the company accounted heavy losses as iron ore production remained disrupted for 11 days when Bastar was without power, following a rebel attack. Company officials said they were arranging generator sets to restore supply in the plant

Naxalite bandh peaceful


Jamshedpur, June 10: Naxalite-sponsored 12-hour bandh in the districts bordering Bengal passed off calmly.

The bandh evoked partial response in Naxalite-affected areas of East Singhbhum and Seraikela-Kharsawan districts. Long distance buses did not ply, trucks and trailers remained off NH-33.

Police and paramilitary forces were deployed at strategic locations in Naxalite-affected areas in both the districts.

Petrol pumps and other business establishments in Ghatshila remained closed.

East Singhbhum superintendent of police Naveen Kumar Singh said elaborate security arrangements were made to frustrate the design of the Naxalites.

Singh branded the bandh as an attempt to divert the attention of police interrogating Naxalite leader Mahabir

Naxalite call on campuses

Vijay Thakur

NEW DELHI, June 11: These are campus placements of a different kind. For, having established roots in rural areas, Naxalite outfits are now trying to penetrate educational institutes in urban areas to recruit cadres for the Red Army from among college students, according to intelligence agencies.

Acting on definite information provided by local intelligence units about “campus recruitment for the Red Army”, the Centre has asked state police organisations to keep a close watch on educational institutes in Naxal-affected urban areas. The state police have also been asked to start an awareness campaign in schools and colleges to thwart the Naxals’ designs.

Principals of all schools have been instructed by the district police authorities to report immediately to police stations if they suspect Naxal activity on their campuses. “Only a few days ago police arrested a college going student, Rabinder, who was planning to attack a police camp at Jagatsinghpur in Orissa. Besides arms and ammunition, police seized a map of the police camp which was their target. This is not the only incident, we have been getting such reports from almost all Naxal infested areas,” said an Intelligence official.

Interestingly, immediately after the arrest of Rabinder, many students went missing from schools and the antecedents of some of them could not be verified. “We have information that various Naxal outfits are getting admission of their cadre in these educational institutes sometimes using fake identities so that they can recruit young students or at least get some sympathisers,” the official said.
This trend has been noticed not only in Orissa, but also in Chattissgarh, Jharkhand and even in Maharashtra. “Poisoning the young generation against the state is more dangerous than attacking police camps or killing security personnel. We have to take this matter very seriously,” the official said.

As of now, the Naxals have a “good following” in rural areas and if their new strategy succeeds, they would have a student brigade in urban areas too, the official said.

Naxals attack ashram, loot property

Statesman News Service
KEONJHAR, June 11: Amid apprehension of reported Naxal presence and activities in the mineral-rich district, about 15 Naxals played havoc with the tranquility of ***Sneha Kanan, an ashram run by Biswa Gnyana Chetana Sangha, an NGO, at Aanlapal, about 110 km from here last night.

Sources said that about 15 rebels including 10 women, brandishing weapons, barged in to the ashram last night at about 11 pm. It is learnt that they attacked all the staff of the Ashram after breaking into the rooms, burnt almost all the documents and damaged cottages too. They also looted money and a mobile from the female staff and reportedly ordered all the staff to tell the owner of the Ashram to return back to the area setting ablaze a tea stall adjacent to the Ashram. The stall was owned by Suresh Naik of Salapada of Anandapur town. The injured have been identified as Purna Chandra Das, Kulamani Bal, Baridhar Rout and Ghasinath Naik, Jharana Jena and Ahalya Jena. The Naxals continued the mayhem for about two hours.

Before leaving the Ashram, they threatened the inmates of the Ashram that the former MLA Badrinarayan Patra, Sarpanch Sanjay Jena and Bubu Jena of the Khaliamenta area would face dire consequences for their alleged ***goondaraj. They also ordered the inmates to intimate the secretary of the Ashram Mr. Panchanan Rout about their warning for allegedly encroaching land. The district superintendent of police Mr. Soumendra Priyadarshi rushed to the spot and conducted operation in the nearby jungles.
It should be noted that the secretary of the Ashram Mr. Rout is a lecturer by profession and runs a tribal school in the premises of the Ashram. While Rout has created and preserved a forest on 20-acre land, the Naxals through a poster had allegedly asked him to vacate the land.

Warning letter found near CRPF camp triggers alert

Express News Service
Posted online: Wednesday, June 11, 2008 at 12:07:11
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Updated: Wednesday, June 11, 2008 at 12:07:11 Print Email To Editor Post Comments

Varanasi, June 10 Security has been tightened in and around a CRPF camp in the Sahupuri area of Chandauli district following the recovery of a letter warning about a prospective blast.

Commandent of 148th Battalion of the Central forces, Sumer Singh said the letter was found near the entry point of the CRPF camp on June 7 and was picked up by guards on duty. “The letter, written in illegible Hindi, vaguely warned about a blast which could involve four males and two females. It also hinted that life of the sender was endangered, though it did not mention anything about the sender,” Singh added.

The next day, it was handed over to the district police and other officials with a letter by Sumer Singh, which mentioned a threat to the CRPF camp, as its personnel was deployed in anti-naxal operations in Chandauli and Sonebhadra districts.

“We are not taking any chances. It reminds of the January 9 blast in a vacant flat in the neighbouring Labour Colony. We have acted quickly and asked the local administration to ensure that no unauthorised person is staying in those vacant flats,” Singh said.

The police have also come into action. “We will ensure that no unscrupulous elements are living in the colony,” said SHO Alinagar, Aniruddh Singh said.

ASP (Chandauli) Vikramaditya Sachan said, “The matter is being taken seriously and the letter has been sent to forensic experts.”

The CRPF battalion comprising eight companies with over 1100 security personnel is posted on anti-naxal duty and at any time there are more than 300 personnel in the camp on rotational duty.

The colony houses families of Labour Department employees and old employees of now closed Hari Fertilisers Unit.

Patil plans Naxalite zone visit

NewsByte 10 June, 2008 03:41:41


New Delhi

June 10: Even as Naxal activity is intensifying in Chattisgarh's Maoist heartland of Dantewada, Union home minister Shivraj Patil is undertaking a day-long visit to neighbouring Jharkhand on Wednesday attempting to take a grip of the situation in the Maoist stronghold districts of the state.

Reports claimed that nearly 1,500 villages in Chhattisgarh's restive Bastar region were plunged into darkness last week after Maoists blasted power supply towers. Chhattisgarh's Bastar region is spread over 40,000 sq. km and the Maoists have been running a de-facto administration for almost two decades in its forested interiors. Last year in May, Naxals had repeatedly attacked power infrastructure in Bastar that kept the entire region in darkness for over a week.

However, sticking to his scheduled plan, Mr Patil will be visiting Jharkhand to review the Naxal situation in two districts of Jharkhand - Chhatra and Palamu - on Wednesday. Mr Patil will be accompanied by special secretary (internal security) M.L. Kumawat and CRPF director-general V.K. Joshi.

KARNATAKA : No talks with Naxals - Acharya

Udupi, June 11: Home Minister Dr V S Acharya has made it clear that there would not be any talks with Naxalites who do not believe in democratic principles.

He said on Sunday that rooting out Naxalism is the sole intention of the State government and that there was no question of holding negotiations.

"Stringent actions will be taken against the organisations indulging in anti-social activities. The government has pla-ns to ban certain organisations, which are susp-ected to be encouraging terrorism," he said. Infrastructure will be improved in Naxal infes-ted areas, while operation against Naxals will also be accelerated, he added.

However, he clarified that the government does not have any 'hidden agenda' against terrorism or Nax-alism.

Naxal activities have been intense in the coastal districts and attacks on civi-lians have been reported in recent years. Dr Acharya also said there may not be any major 'surgery' in the Home department, adding that steps would be taken to strengthen the coastal security force.

Chhattisgarh reeling under Red terror

Ejaz Kaiser
Raipur, June 10, 2008
First Published: 01:01 IST(10/6/2008)
Last Updated: 01:03 IST(10/6/2008)

Chhattisgarh is struggling to recover from the damage inflicted by Maoist strikes in Bastar and Durg.

While the entire Bastar region plunged into darkness after Maoists damaged towers on Thursday and has to wait three more days to get power supply, people in Durg have been left terrified by the landmine blast that killed three CISF personnel on Sunday. This is the first time Durg has come under Naxal attack.

Work on restoration of power in Bastar is on on a war-footing, by nearly 250 employees of the state power board in the presence of over 500 security personnel. The maoists had blasted two 220 kv towers and damaged over 30 poles of transmission lines.

Power board officials told HT that if weather permitted, Bastar would get power in the next 3-4 days. Owing to security reason, however, no work would be carried out after sunset.

To provide relief to the nearly 20 lakh people suffering from the blackout, and to ensure power to hospitals, offices, water and other essential services, large numbers of high capacity generators have been rushed to Bastar.

Chief Minister Raman Singh visited Bodali village, where the towers were damaged, on Monday, and directed Bastar division officials to work round the clock to restore power. The state government is contemplating installing solar energy plants in affected districts as alternative arrangement for the future, he said.

In Durg, people expressed alarm at the ultras’ move towards urban areas and senior state intelligence officials told HT that such landmine blasts had so far been reported only from Bastar. But Home Minister Ramvichar Netam begged to differ, saying: "I don't agree Maoists have begun their foray into urban areas." IG YKS Thakur said: "We appeal to the people not to get scared as every precautionary measure will be taken to ensure such incident are not repeated."

Monday, June 09, 2008

Maoists’ power blackout halts mining in southern Chhattisgarh

Raipur, June 9 (IANS) The iron ore mining industry in southern Chhattisgarh has come to a halt since Thursday after Maoists cut off power supply in four districts including Dantewada, which has one of the world’s largest iron ore deposits. Mining operations at three deposits of the National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) at Bailadila hills in Dantewada have been hit. NMDC, India’s largest iron ore producer and exporter in the public sector, has put the losses incurred by it at Rs.120 million.

Maoists blew up 220 KV high-tension electricity towers in the forests of Dantewada Thursday, plunging the region into darkness. Besides Dantewada, the other districts that don’t have power supply are Bastar, Bijapur and Narayanpur.

NMDC officials say the blackout has completely stopped iron ore excavation work at two fully-mechanised mines at Bailadila, while work is somehow on in the third deposit.

The NMDC produces about 20 million tonnes iron ore per annum from the Bailadila deposits of its total 27 million tonnes annual production.

Essar Steel, which has a iron ore beneficiation plant at Bailadilla hills in Kirandul, has also been hit. Its supply of high quality iron ore to its own pellet plant at Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh has suffered heavily.

However, the private sector steel major had installed high-powered generator sets after rebels ransacked its Kirandul unit in April and set fire to over 50 trucks.

A contingent of about 200 engineers and technicians of the Chhattisgarh State Electricity Board (CSEB) reached Barsoor - the site of the blast - late Sunday amid heavy security to begin repair work.

The team got late access to the site as Maoists had laid land mines in the forests leading to it.

CRPF men go after Maoists after firing

Monday June 9 2008 14:52 IST
Express News Service

ROURKELA: Police and CRPF personnel on Sunday continued with a massive hunt for Maoists after six CRPF men were injured last evening in a fierce gunbattle on the Orissa-Jharkhand border near Tulsikani of Sundargarh district.

Sources said Rourkela-based 58 CRPF Battalion was returning from a joint patrol with their Jharkhand count erparts when the Maoists ambushed them around 7 p.m. in the thick Saranda forest.

The ultras, around 40 in number, are learnt to have positioned themselves on a small forest hill, a few metres from the Akhaisila Nullah, near Tulsikani. When the retreating CRPF party came close to firing range the ultras opened fire.

Initially taken aback by the hostile attack, the CRPF men soon retaliated forcing the banned CPI (Maoist) members to retreat. Around 800 rounds were fired from both sides as the horror lasted for nearly two hours.

Police claimed that several ultras sustained critical injuries. Five hours before 2 p.m. similar firing was reported from Saranda forest on Jharkhand side.

IGP (Western range) PB Acharya told this website's newspaper that security has been further beefed up, adding it is under verification whether the second spot of firing falls under Orissa police’s jurisdiction or not.

The dense Saranda forest which spans across both states has been a Maoist corridor and a haven for them.

The incident coincided with the visit of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and transfer of Rourkela SP Ravi Kant.

Maoists eye campuses

Monday June 9 2008 14:34 IST
Express News Service

PARADIP: Security has been beefed up in Jagatsinghpur, Erasama, Tirtol, Balikuda and other areas of Jagatsinghpur district apprehending Maoist attacks on various police stations.

During a raid, police arrested a college student, reportedly a Maoist supporter, from a private college mess in Jagatsinghpur town and seized a revolver, four live cartridges, map sketch and leaflets from him recently.

The Maoists of Erasama and Balikuda areas have been operating their network from Sambalpur, Sundargarh, Nayagarh and other areas of the State.

The arrests of Prashant Rout of Balikuda area by Sambalpur police and woman ultra Manju Muduli by Bhanjanagar police gave vital clues about the Maoist network in Erasama, Balikuda and Jagatsinghpur areas.

The surrender of Prasant Parida, Oriya teacher in the Maoist camp, came as a shot in the arm for the police.

Raids led to identification of another Maoist Rita Biswal of Paidakul village under Erasama police limits who was operating a Maoist network in Sambalpur and Sundargarh districts.

Acting on a tip off, Sambalpur police with the help of their Jagatsinghpur counterparts raided a private college mess of Pratap Singh at Lalasahi under Jagatsinghpur police limits and arrested Rita’s brother, Rabindra, a Plus Three student of Jagatsinghpur College.

He was reportedly operating the network from the private mess. Police have shifted Rabindra to Tirtol police station for interrogation.

The sketch seized from him had the route map of Erasama, Balikuda, Jagatsinghpur, Paradip, SP Office and armoury.

Police suspect the Maoists had planned attacks at Jagatsinghpur after verification of the sketch map and letters.

Similarly police also suspected the activities of fleeing students for their involvement in Maoist activities.

Jagatsinghpur SP R.K. Sharma interrogated Rabindra and got vital clues about the Maoist activities in the district.

Injured Maoist sent to AIIMS

9 Jun 2008, 0456 hrs IST,Gyan Prakash,TNN

PATNA: Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has played a good Samaritan to a top Maoist leader, who was injured during an encounter with police, by sending him to AIIMS in New Delhi for treatment.

CPI (Maoist)'s Bihar-Jharkhand Special Area Committee zonal commander Sunil Hembram alias Sunil Marandi was wounded during an encounter between Special Auxiliary Police jawans and the Naxalites when the latter attacked the Jhajha railway station on April 13. One SAP jawan was killed on the spot.

A critically injured Sunil was taken away by his associates who later clandestinely brought him to a private nursing home in Patna. After treating him for a few days, the nursing home doctors threw in the towel as Sunil was suffering from renal failure.

The comrades were taking back Sunil in a jeep on May 30 when they were intercepted by police near the Vidyapeeth Chauraha in Lakhisarai district.

It was only after their sustained interrogation for hours that the police could know they had netted a prize catch. Sunil and the five other comrades were taken into custody.

Police sources said it was to vent their anger against the arrest of their top leader that Maoists blew up the railway track at Narganjo and blasted the office of the Haveli-Kharagpur SDO in Munger district, neighbouring Lakhisarai, in the wee hours of June 2.

The arrested Maoists, meanwhile, were forwarded to judicial custody. Sunil was examined by a medical board which referred him to Patna Medical College and Hospital. In view of his critical condition, the Patna doctors referred him to AIIMS.

The chief minister's sanction is mandatory for treatment of a prisoner outside the state, the sources said, adding Nitish has given his nod to the proposal concerning Sunil. "The Maoist leader has since been sent to AIIMS, and the state government is bearing all the medical expenses on him," a senior police official said.

Two CPI(Maiost) rebels sentenced to death

Biharsharif, Jun 9 (PTI) Two CPI (Maoist) rebels were today sentenced to death by a fast track court in connection with the attack on a police station in Bihar's Nalanda district nearly three years ago in which two persons were killed and arms and ammunition looted.
Fast track court judge Birendra Singh found Surendra Manjhi and Saryu Manjhi guilty and awarded them death penalty.

The two were present in the court when the judgement was pronounced.

Heavily armed activists of the banned outfit had raided Chhabilapur police station on the intervening night of August 11-12, 2005 and set it ablaze. Over 450 rounds of fire were exchanged between the police and naxalites in which a constable and a person lodged in the lock-up were killed and three constables and a cook injured.
After the police contingent surrendered, the naxalites looted seven rifles, two carbines and 213 rounds of ammunition from them. The maoists had also set ablaze the newly constructed police station building nearby before retreating.

Of the 13 persons named accused in the case, seven were acquitted for want of evidence, while four others were being tried separately and two handed down death penalty today. PTI

State police, army talk Red terror

Ranchi, June 7: Senior officers of the Indian Army and the state government today held a meeting to step up interaction with each other in the fight against Naxalite terror.
The meeting, held amid closed doors at the behest of the Union home ministry, discussed ways to extend training facilities for the police personnel. Though no formal decision was taken, today’s meeting was likely to have a bearing in the way the anti-rebel operations are conducted in the near future in Jharkhand.

State director-general of police V.D. Ram said 24 companies of the state police had so far been trained by the army at the Ramgarh cantonment. “But, we want to ready 48 companies. And as the Ramgarh cantonment does not have the capacity to accommodate all, we requested Army commanders to arrange training facilities in other army establishments as well.”
According to high level sources, today’s meeting also discussed the changing nature of the Naxalite warfare using examples.
Though the senior army officials refused to get directly involved in anti-Naxalite operations, they promised all help to the police in terms of training and technical know-how.

“It is a civilian issue. It wouldn’t be wise enough for us to involve ourselves directly. But, we firmly support the Jharkhand police to fight out Naxalism. We will train the police personnel in such a way that they achieve the army’s efficiency in counter-insurgency operations,” said Major-General Gautam Banerjee.

Ram, too, was happy with the deliberations. “We discussed wide ranging issues. Army officials gave us positive assurances. Let us hope for the best,” he commented.

Apart from Madhya Bharat GoC Banerjee, among the other army man present at today’s meeting was 23rd Infantry Division GoC A.K. Singh. From the government, apart from the director-general of police, chief secretary A.K. Basu and home secretary Sudhir Tripathi were also present.

During a review meeting with chief ministers of Naxalite-affected states, Union home minister Shivraj V. Patil had spoken of “proper co-ordination” with the Army and agreed to take up the issue with the Army.

The ministry had also constituted a task force under the leadership of special secretary (internal security), assisted by senior officials from intelligence agencies, central paramilitary forces and state police forces, to deliberate on the operational set-ups required to deal with Naxalite activities and bring about better co-ordination between various states.

Udupi: Ban on KFD Under Consideration - Home Minister

Udupi: Ban on KFD Organisation Under Consideration - Home Minister

Daijiworld Media Network - Udupi (SP)

Udupi, Jun 9: The state government is seriously thinking of banning Karnataka Forum for Dignity (KFD) in the state, said newly appointed home minister Dr V S Acharya.

Speaking to media persons on Sunday, June 8, he stated that stringent steps will be initiated to curb anti-national forces. The state will not waver in the matter of banning such groups if found necessary, he warned.

Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) has already been banned in the state and SIMI has questioned this ban in the Supreme Court. The state government has submitted necessary documents before the court in support of it's decision to ban the organisation. Similar action will be taken against KFD too, he added.

Importance will be given to develop naxal affected areas by providin proper infrastructure, rather than having dialogues with the naxals. Forest conservation legislations have created some hurdle for the successful implementation of packages meant for developing these areas. Steps will be taken to remove these hurdles, he added.

No talks with Naxals: Acharya

Udupi, DHNS:

Home Minister Dr V S Acharya has made it clear that there would not be any talks with Naxalites who do not believe in democratic principles.

He said on Sunday that rooting out Naxalism is the sole intention of the State government and that there was no question of holding negotiations.

“Stringent actions will be taken against the organisations indulging in anti-social activities. The government has pla-ns to ban certain organisations, which are susp-ected to be encouraging terrorism,” he said. Infrastructure will be improved in Naxal infes-ted areas, while operation against Naxals will also be accelerated, he added.

However, he clarified that the government does not have any ‘hidden agenda’ against terrorism or Nax-alism.
Naxal activities have been intense in the coastal districts and attacks on civi-lians have been reported in recent years. Dr Acharya also said there may not be any major ‘surgery’ in the Home department, adding that steps would be taken to strengthen the coastal security force

Red flag over Nepal boosts Naxals' morale

8 Jun 2008, 0141 hrs IST,Mohua Chatterjee,TNN

NEW DELHI: The Maoist victory in Nepal seems to have greatly boosted confidence of the Left extremists in India, which could only imply more trouble for the government in dealing with Naxalite violence.

A secret meeting of the central committee (CC) of the CPI-(Maoist), held after results of elections in Nepal were declared, declared in a triumphant tone: "The verdict in Nepal is a verdict against feudal monarchy, Indian expansionism and US imperialism — it reflects the growing aspirations of the Nepalese masses for land, livelihood and democracy."

In the CC statement, the Naxalites also sent out a message to their cadre to "oppose moves of the imperialists, particularly US imperialists, and Indian expansionists to meddle in the affairs of Nepal."

"It is the aspirations of an overwhelming majority of masses that trounced the parties that had either supported the king and/or the Indian ruling classes, or hesitated to come out strongly against feudal, imperialist oppression and Indian intervention in Nepal," the CC statement said.

The CC welcomed an alternative like CPN (Maoist) coming to the fore in Nepal, with its "commitment to abolish the feudal monarchy, abrogate all unequal treaties signed with India by the former ruling classes of Nepal, ensuring democracy and equality for oppressed sections of society like Dalits, adivasis, minorities and women."

The CC hailed the Maoists in Nepal for routing ‘feudal, pro-imperialist, pro-Indian comprador parties' and voting for a genuine change in the "rotten feudal system", the statement said, sending "its fraternal revolutionary greetings for their victory against the reactionary forces."

The CC has warned the Nepalese Maosists saying, "the real test, however, begins now after the CPN(M) taking over reins of power. No radical restructuring of the system is possible without the smashing of the existing state."

The CC has suggested to the CPN(M) to beware of the conspiracies of imperialists led by the US, Indian 'reactionary ruling' classes, and the 'feudal comprador' forces of Nepal to engineer coups, political assassinations, creation of artificial scarcity through economic blockades and sabotage, and subversion of the democratic process, and called upon it to be fully prepared to confront these reactionaries through armed means.

In the written statement, the CC also strongly condemned the Indian 'expansionists' in trying to create public opinion prior to the elections in favour of the Koirala clique.

"They went so far as to get the national security adviser, Narayanan, to openly state on TV that they favour a Koirala victory. They also got the media to propagate cooked up opinion polls putting the Maoists at third place and blacking out media reports when the Maoists began to sweep the polls, upsetting all their calculations," the statement read.


`Naxals infiltrating west Asian nations`

Press Trust Of India / Dubai June 07, 2008, 5:41 IST

Kuwait has claimed that Naxalites have infiltrated west Asian countries and has blamed them for a wave of strikes by foreign workers in the region.

According to a recent report of the Kuwait Ministry of Interior, there was evidence that the group had decided to enter the west Asian countries, which were their "enemy No 2 after India" because of the alleged inhuman treatment meted out to Asian labourers in the region, a daily reported.

Suggesting new curbs on Asian workers, the ministry proposed that their entry be "rationalised" to prevent Naxal elements from creeping into the country.

KCR eye to woo Maoist cadre

Updated: 06-09-2008
HYDERABAD : In every general elections in the state, particularly in Telangana region Maoists have been playing crucial role by extending support to the party that is likely to win. Taking clue from their tactical support in 2004, TRS chief K Chandrasekhar Rao now started attempts to woo their cadre.
Rao met top Naxal leader Kura Rajanna at Osmania General Hospital here on Sunday. Rao held in-camera discussion with him on various issues pertaining to Telangana. The move assumes a lot of political significance in the wake of intelligence reports that the TRS is trying to woo the Naxals of Janashakti and CPI Maoists who couldn’t carry out their armed struggle due to police action.

During by-elections, Rao said that TRS’ agenda is similar to the Naxals except on the issue of armed struggle. Rajanna, 60, has been undergoing treatment in the hospital after being shifted from the Warangal Central Prison on June 2.

Rao has appointed a team of TRS leaders to monitor Rajanna’s health. Rao said, “I know him since my childhood. This meeting has no political significance”.

Three CISF personnel killed in naxal attack

Raipur (PTI): A Central Industrial Security Force officer and two ranks of the force were killed and two others injured in a naxal attack in Durg district in Chhattisgarh on Sunday.

The police said the left extremists blew up a jeep of CISF personnel using an IED near Mahamaya mines area under Dallirajehra police station of the district.

The five CISF personnel were in the vehicle when naxalites triggered a landmine blast. It killed a Sub-Inspector, a havaldar and a jawan, while two others sustained injuries, they said.

The injured were admitted to a hospital in Bhilai.

The naxalites, numbering about 40, also made off with security forces arms after the attack.

A hunt to nab them was on, they added.

3 CRPF jawans die in Naxal blast

Raipur, June 8
Three CRPF jawans were today killed when Naxals triggered a landmine blast near Dalli-Rajhara in Durg district of Chhattisgarh, the police said.

The blast occurred when the jawans had gone to inspect the route before conveying explosives from Dalli-Rajhara to Mahamaya iron ore godown. Two jawans died on the spot, while one succumbed to his injuries before reaching hospital.

Two others were seriously injured and were admitted to the Bhilai steel plant’s hospital. — UNI

Naxals planning attacks on police

7 Jun 2008, 0440 hrs IST,Kapil Dixit,TNN

ALLAHABAD: Intelligence inputs about some Naxal group’s planning to target police establishments in days to come have sent the district police in a tizzy.

Alarmed by the information, top police officers have decided to take preventive measures at war-footing. As a result, additional police force has been deployed at all sensitive points.

Intelligence reports have also warned policemen against venturing in areas bordering Naxal-affected districts like Mirzapur and Rewa in Madhya Pradesh without adequate manpower. TOI is privy to one such report (Intelligence/Naxal/2008). It stresses on the need of providing sophisticated weapons to the police force deployed in border areas to thwart Naxal activities.

The report has also identified Shankargarh and Koraon as two police stations, whose area of jurisdiction is infested with Naxal activities. Sleuths have also warned that Naxal groups were mobilising local support in these areas to take on security forces.

The report has been sent to top police brass in the state capital with the warning that it should not be taken lightly.
The southern part of the district, which is connected to neighbouring MP and is surrounded by hills, provides a safe haven to Naxal groups. Most villages in this region are inhabited by tribals who have made several abortive attempts to grab lands in Koraon and Shankargarh belt much to the chagrin of men-in-khaki.

NMDC mines paralysed after Naxal cut power

R Krishna Das / Raipur June 7, 2008, 5:47 IST

Production in Dantewada mining facilities of India's largest iron ore producer and exporter, National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC), was paralysed after Naxalites blew up power towers in the area, plunging the entire Bastar region into darkness. The incident occurred on Thursday.

Of the three fully-mechanised mines of NMDC, two are in Bailadila pockets of Dantewada district while one is in Donimalai in Karnataka. The Bailadila mines produce 20.5 million tonnes iron ore per year. The company's total production is 27.07 million tonnes.

"The entire operation of NMDC has come to a halt as there is no power supply in the area," said a senior company executive.

The incident hit supply of power to Dantewada, Bijapur, Bastar and Narayanpur districts, besides plunging more than 1,500 villages into darkness. The worst sufferers were the patients in different hospitals, where the administration was trying to maintain electricity supply through generators. Water supply in region also remained shut.

"The NMDC management is trying to restore power by bringing generators from Hyderabad," the executive said. The loss would be known only when production resumes, he added.

This is the second time in the past one year when production in NMDC's mines has been hit following disruption of power supply by Naxalites. Last year's attack had kept the region in the dark for 11 days and caused a loss of around Rs 100 crore to NMDC.

However, the work in Essar's iron ore benefication plant near Kirandul in Dantewada district was not affected. The company, which supplies high-quality iron ore from here to its pellet plant in Visakhapatnam, has installed generator sets.The railways, which ferry three dozens rakes of iron ore to Visakhapatnam from here, would also incur a loss.

Meanwhile, work to restore the towers has started on a war-footing. State power board officials said restoring the supply would take at least 10 days. The state government is also in talks with the Orissa government to get power for emergency services. A number of generator sets have been sent to Bastar to restore power for emergency services, including hospitals, say sources.