Saturday, October 11, 2008

8 injured in Maoist attack in Orissa

Rourkela (Orissa), Oct 11 (PTI) At least eight persons, including the Vice-Chairman of Kuarmunda block, were injured when two suspected Maoists attacked them by hurling bombs at Raibaga, 35 km from here, police said today.
The injured persons were rushed to Biramitrapur Primary Health Centre and later shifted to Rourkela Government Hospital (RGH) here.

The incident took place late last night when the block Vice-Chairman, Shyam Sundar Sahu and other villagers questioned two motorcycle-borne youths on their suspicious activities, they said.

The duo suspected Maoist then attacked them with bombs and flee away immediately into the nearby forests.

Police said that search operations were on to nab the ultras who are suspected to belong to the neighbouring state Jharkhand.

In another incident, Raibaga locals gheraoed the police station for three hours yesterday demanding the arrest of a person who allegedly trafficked girls and two of his aides.

The locals earlier rescued a minor girl hailing from Jharkhand from the clutches of the alleged traffickers and handed her over to her parents staying in a village near Balama in Jharkhand. PTI

Top Maoist nabbed, huge cache of explosives recovered

11 Oct 2008, 2154 hrs IST,PTI

GARWAH (Jharkhand): In a big haul, 50 kg of gelatins, six guns and a huge quantity of other explosives were today recovered in Garwah district follow
ing the arrest of three Maoists, including the out-fit's self-styled Sub-zonal Commander, Rajendra Singh Kharuar.

"Besides the gelatins and three DBBL guns and three .315 rifles, the security men also recovered 3,061 rounds of cartridge, 228 detonators and other explosives," Deputy Inspector General of Police Nandu Prasad told newsmen here.

He said the police came across the huge cache of explosives soon after the arrest of top Maoist cadre, Kharuar and two of his associates - Koili Singh and Mahendra Viswakarma in the morning.

Following Kharuar's tip-off, the security men launched raids at different places between Ranka and Bhandaria police stations during the day.

''Kharuar is a big catch for us. he faces about forty cases in Jharkhand and Chhatisgarh,'' the police officer said.

The hardcore Naxalite is one of the six top ultras to have fallen in police net this year.

Naxals target station, trains stalled

Jamshedpur, Oct. 11: A group of Maoists struck at the Mahadevsaal railway station in West Singhbhum late last night, assaulting its assistant station master and disrupting train services on the Rourkela-Chakradharpur section.

The rebels, numbering 12, dragged Y.C. Sawaiya out of his cabin along with a porter who happened to be with him and beat him up with iron rods. The official is now undergoing treatment at a hospital in the railway’s zonal headquarters of Chakradharpur with serious head injuries.

The police claim to have launched a massive search operation in the nearby areas of Mahadevsaal, which draws pilgrims to its well-known Shiva temple throughout the year.

Among the areas under their scanner are the red bastions of Goelkera and Manoharpur.

The police were still probing the reasons behind yesterday’s attack that came at a time when a large number of Maoists were said to have assembled in the Saranda forests.

Sudhir Kumar Jha, the superintendent of police of West Singhbhum, said it may be linked to the mid week arrest of one Junus Kandulna, a sibling of a Naxalite in Goelkera. “With this as a possible reason, the Maoists may have wanted to make their presence felt in the region,” he said.

Also, villagers residing in Manoharpur, Goelkera and Mahadevsaal had told the police the attack could be a fallout of a few local railway officials’ refusal to help Maoists in illegal transportation of forest wood.

“Villagers have told us that some Naxalites could have been involved in illegal trade of wood. Sometimes they take undue advantage of railway staff,” he added.

According to Jha, Mahadevsaal is a small station with a few railway officials all of whom worked out of a small cabin.

“A profusely bleeding Sawaiya walked to the nearby Goelkera station when a police patrol party spotted him. The police then rushed him to the hospital in Chakradharpur,” Jha said.

The Naxalites left the spot when they saw a train approaching the station. However, no train passed the station after the attack, a railway source confirmed. The Amravati-Tata Passenger had just crossed the junction minutes before the incident, while the Howrah-Kurla Express remained stranded at the Chakradharpur junction.

Services were also affected on the Rourkela-Chakradharpur line yesterday. While Howrah-Mumbai Express remained stranded at Tatanagar railway station, Pune-Howrah Azad Hind Express was halted at Jeraikela junction. The Koraput-Howrah Express did not leave Rourkela station too. Normal services resumed early this morning.

Maoist leader in net

Rajendra Singh Kharwar, a self-styled Naxalite zonal commander, was arrested from a village in Garhwa yesterday. A huge amount of explosives, apart from three rifles and three guns, were recovered from him. Garhwa superintendent of police Saket Kumar Singh said Rajendra was wanted in several cases of murder and rebel attacks in the area.

He was arrested from Udaypur village under Ranka block in Garhwa.

National Seminar on Terrorism : L K ADVANI SPEECH

Speech by
Shri L.K. Advani
Leader of the Opposition (Lok Sabha)

Inauguration of National Seminar on Terrorism
Organised by Rambhau Mhalgi Prabodhini

New Delhi – 4 October 2008

- - - - -
Our commitment: To make India terror-free
è POTA will be re-enacted; Strong action will be taken to bust terrorist cells that have mushroomed in different parts of India.

è The contrast is between NDA and UPA is that one alliance cares for India and the other cares only for its vote-bank.

è Stigmatising any faith or community in the fight against terror is wrong.

è Maligning of security forces is a dangerous new trend.

è Obnoxious propaganda by the likes of Arundhati Roy must be
firmly countered.

è Our vision is not limited by the considerations of where will our Party be after the next elections. Rather, it extends to caring about whether India will be united and strong after a hundred years, after a thousand years.

- - - - -

It gives me great pleasure to be with all of you this morning. My hearty congratulations to Shri Gopinath Munde, Prof. Bal Apte, Shri Vinay Sahasrabuddhe and others at the Rambhau Mhalgi Prabodhini firstly for organizing this seminar and, secondly, for organizing it in New Delhi. The Prabodhini regularly holds seminars and training workshops on important topics for social and political activists at its beautiful campus near Mumbai. This is perhaps for the first that it is holding a major event in the national capital. I look forward to the day when the Prabodhini can have a full-fledged centre operating in Delhi.

India is the worst victim of terrorism in the world

The subject of this seminar is highly topical. Over-familiarity with a problem sometimes lulls one's awareness about its seriousness. Therefore, it may surprise many to know that the problem of terrorism has persisted for nearly half the period of the life of independent India. Since the closing yeas of the 1970s, India has been in the vortex of foreign-sponsored terrorism, which has claimed nearly 80,000 lives, both civilian and of security forces — in Punjab, Jammu & Kashmir, North-Eastern states and in the rest of India. There is no country in the world which has been a victim of terrorist onslaught for so long, and which has suffered such enormous loss.

If a menace has continued for so long, it means that its perpetrators have a definite purpose, a definite goal. We in the BJP had correctly assessed right in the beginning that the goal of terrorists and their patrons abroad was not only to threaten the common man and the civil society, not just to create ordinary law and order disturbances , but to endanger the very unity and security of the nation. What is happening in India today has vindicated our assessment.

History will not pardon us if we fail

In the history of nations, it is important to know what challenges they face. But it is far more important to know how they respond to these challenges. Nations oblivious to the threats that eat into their vitals run an imminent danger of losing their ability to protect themselves. The warning bells are loud and clear that, even though the nation's internal security today stands seriously threatened, our response lacks political will. India does not have a seamlessly integrated counter-terrorism strategy backed by resolute operational capabilities.

There is one more thing to be said about internal security challenges. These do not manifest suddenly, nor do they mature overnight. The ominous signals they send over a prolonged period of time can be noticed unmistakably. However, if we choose not to notice them, or are incapable of taking self-protective action, history will not absolve us. It is our charge against the Congress party that it is keeping its eyes wide shut, choosing not to see, nor to strike, all for the fear of losing its vote-bank.

As far as the BJP is concerned, let me make it absolutely clear that we shall never conduct ourselves in such a short-sighted way that history would hold us guilty of not doing our duty at the right time and in the right manner. We are prepared to make any sacrifices for defending the unity and ensuring the security of our Motherland. Our vision is not limited by the considerations of where will our Party be after the next elections. Rather, it extends to caring about whether India will be united and strong after a hundred years, after a thousand years.

In the last millennium, India suffered many a blow. In the last century, India suffered blood-soaked Partition on account of a pernicious ideology. Therefore, all political parties and all sections of our society should so conduct themselves that no evil power, external or internal, can set its eyes on destabilizing, debilitating and dividing India.

Terrorism: Invisible enemy's low-cost, asymmetrical war

For such strong protective force to emerge, it is necessary to know that in today's world, failure to protect internal security has emerged as the most potent threat to the unity and integrity of nations, to the stability of their polity and to the protection their Constitutional values. In post-World War period, failure to deal with internal security challenges, as opposed to foreign aggressions, has been responsible for the degradation of a large number of nation-states. Most states when confronted with serious internal threats thought it to be a passing phase and allowed the drift to reach a point where retrieval was no longer possible.

Quite often, the adversarial forces won not because of their own strength but because of the weaknesses and mistakes of the regimes that were hit. Thus, history has a big lesson for us and it would be tragic if we failed to learn from past mistakes, both of our own and of others.

An important lesson that we in India should learn — this lesson is indeed globally relevant — is that conventional wars are becoming increasingly cost-ineffective. As instruments of achieving political and strategic objectives, their outcome is unpredictable — and often, counter-productive. Hence, foreign aggressions today come disguised as proxy wars in the form of terrorism and other forms of violence. The enemy targets internal fault-lines for furthering his strategic and political objectives. Even less powerful nations are able to exercise this low-cost sustainable option, giving rise to the new doctrine of asymmetric warfare.

We can see this clearly from what both Pakistan and Bangladesh have been doing to us. Neither can match India's military strength. Yet, both have been threatening India with cross-border terrorism.

This warfare is waged by an invisible enemy, for whom the civil society is both a source of sustenance and the target. The enemy exploits the liberties, freedom, technological facilities and infrastructure to his advantage, making even the more powerful, better equipped security agencies feel helpless.

Maligning of security forces: A dangerous new trend

Maligning the security forces is often a deliberate ploy employed by the civil society supporters of terrorist outfits. Unfortunately, it sometimes influences the thinking of even well-meaning human rights activists. However, it should not be forgotten that our security forces work under extremely difficult circumstances. The rest of society can sleep peacefully only because of the diligent service rendered by our police, paramilitary and Armed Forces. I fully agree that innocent persons should not be harassed and penalised. But let us spare a thought for this question: What will happen to our society, to our Nation, if the morale of our security forces is allowed to be weakened?

Sadly, this is precisely what has happened in recent times. What is sadder is that leaders of the Congress party and the UPA Government have allowed this denigration of our security forces to take place in the mistaken belief that those who are targeting our uniformed forces are defenders of "secularism". Their thinking about secularism has become so warped that anybody who targets the BJP becomes their friend.

For example, there is this book 'Khaki and the Ethnic Violence in India' by Omar Khalidi, an Indian scholar based in America, which provided the inspiration for the Sachar Committee to seek a communal census in the Armed Forces.

Another example is a book by Arundhati Roy, a well-known author, on the terrorist attack on the Indian Parliament on 13 December 2001. The book argues, quite obnoxiously, that the attack was not carried out by terrorists but orchestrated by the security forces themselves with prior knowledge of the leadership of the NDA Government. Her recent statement that "India needs Azadi from Kashmir as much as Kashmir needs azadi from India" is seditious. The intellectual and literary community should strongly condemn such anti-national pronouncements, which are being given legitimacy by pseudo-secularists.

Minorityism has gripped the Congress mindset

Here is yet another example of how the UPA Government has chosen to be influenced by the sinister and sustained campaign launched by such people. In spite of a Supreme Court verdict, it has not carried out the death sentence on Afzal Guru, who has been convicted for his role in the terrorist attack on Parliament. His was no ordinary crime. It was an offence of hitting at the country's legislature, the highest seat of India's Constitutional authority, which symbolizes its sovereignty and democratic polity. Not even the national outrage on this issue has dented the UPA Government's apathy. Not even the extraordinary decision of the families of the martyred security personnel to return the gallantry awards has made it act. Such indeed is the grip of minorityism on the Congress mindset today.

The same mindset has dictated the Congress party's anti-national response to the issue of unchecked infiltration of Bangladeshis into Assam and other parts of the country. I was in Guwahati last week, where, among others, I met Shri Jaideep Saikia, an eminent Assamese scholar who has written a widely acclaimed book 'Terror Sans Frontiers: Islamist Militancy in North East India'. The book is indeed an eye-opener, a strong warning against a problem which the Supreme Court itself, while striking down the IMDT Act as unconstitutional, has described as "external aggression". The UPA Government's response to this external aggression is simply to turn a blind eye.

Once again, the same mindset has dictated the UPA Government's decision not to give approval to the anti-terror laws passed by the Assemblies of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, on the lines of an identical Act that exists in Maharashtra.

I can understand a government not succeeding despite making its best efforts. But I cannot but strongly indict that government which does not take even a single positive step at the legislative, political, administrative or operational levels to a counter threat which is so profusely bleeding the nation.

Stigmatising any faith in the fight against terror is wrong

Friends, no campaign of terrorism that has continued for so long can be without an ideological motive. Recognising the anti-India ideological driving force behind terrorism, and evolving a proper nationalist ideological response to it, is critical to achieving long-term success. Here I would like to state two things emphatically. Firstly, no religion and no religious community can and should be blamed for the criminal acts of some individuals belonging to that community. Stigmatising any community in the fight against terrorism is wrong, counter-productive, and must be condemned.

At the same time, it is equally important to recognize that religious extremism of a certain kind provides the ideological fervour and outward justification for terrorism and separatism. After all, religion was indeed misinterpreted and misused to construct the Two-Nation theory, which had disastrous consequences for India, for both Hindus and Muslims. The ideology behind the ongoing war of terrorism against India is a continuation of the separatist ideology that created Pakistan. Which is why, the anti-India forces in Pakistan have sponsored cross-border terrorism as a deliberate policy to achieve Kashmir's secession from India, and also to weaken India in many different ways.

In recent years, an important new experiment has been introduced into this policy of cross-border terrorism. A section of Indian youth, misguided and exploited by their mentors abroad and radicalized by an interpretation of Islam that is propagated by Al Qaeda, have been inveigled into the vortex of terrorism. SIMI and Indian Mujahideen have emerged as the face of indigenized terror. Their literature speaks volumes about their aversion for the very Idea of a secular, plural and democratic India, and also about their resolve to destroy India as we know it.

Contrast between NDA and UPA Governments

How did the NDA Government deal with SIMI? And how has the UPA Government dealt with it? I shall not go into all the well-known details, except to say that the contrast is stark. The contrast is between one alliance that cares for India and the other that cares only for its vote-bank. So much so that two Cabinet ministers in the UPA Government had the audacity to publicly defend SIMI, which is banned as a terrorist organization, and the Prime Minister did not even upbraid them!

This contrast is also evident in the manner in which the two alliances have dealt with the issue of a strong anti-terrorism law. In a country that has suffered so much due to terrorism with international operational and financial linkages, the need for an effective anti-terrorism law ought to be so self-evident as to preclude any divisive debate over it. After all, the BJP supported the TADA Bill when Rajiv Gandhi's Government introduced it in Parliament. Without TADA, some of the culprits in Rajiv Gandhi's murder case could not have been chargesheeted. When the NDA Government assumed office, TADA had already ceased to exist. Therefore, we legislated POTA.

One of the first acts of the UPA Government in 2004 was to repeal POTA. As a matter of fact, the war against terror figured very low in UPA's Common Minimum Programme. The CMP did not mention a single step to check trans-border infiltration, choking terror's sources of funding, and smuggling of weapons and explosives, etc. The Government's weak-kneed approach, as was inevitable, proved fatal in course of time. It not only emboldened the extremists groups, but also brought down the efficacy of country's security apparatus. The momentum generated by the series of initiatives taken by the NDA government to strengthen national security, particularly the internal security, was lost within a year.

During the first year in office, the UPA Government enjoyed the fruits of the efforts of the previous Government and, as a result, not a single incident of terrorism occurred outside J&K. But in the last three years the country has been brought to a pass where the terrorists are bleeding it with the frequency, place and time of their choice. There is mushrooming of sleeper cells and subversive modules of terrorists, both indigenous and foreign, in different parts of the country. As a result, every citizen of the country from Kashmir to Kanyakumari today feels insecure about his safety.

POTA remained in existence from September 2001 till December 2004. During this period, only eight incidents of terrorist violence, including the attack on Parliament and on Akshardham Temple in Gandhingar, took place in India's hinterland, leading to 119 deaths. Contrast it with what happened after POTA was repealed: The footprint of terrorism has grown alarmingly larger in the past four years. Jammu, Ayodhya, Varanasi, Samjhauta Express in Haryana, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Malegaon, Jaipur, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Delhi …and, in the latest attack, serial blasts rocked Agartala in Tripura just two days ago. During this period, 625 persons have been killed and 2,011 injured, depicting a five fold increase in those killed and injured. It is the same country, same people, same police and same intelligence agencies; what then explains this unprecedented increase? The answer is very simple: Weak laws have emboldened the terrorists and appeasement has failed to change their intentions.

Congress cacophony about anti-terror law

Since the serial bomb blasts in New Delhi on 13 September 2008, people's pressure on the Government to enact a strong anti-terror law has greatly intensified. But the manner in which senior leaders of the UPA Government and the Congress party have responded to this demand is pathetic.

On 17th September, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, while addressing the Governor's Conference, said: "We are actively considering legislation to further strengthen the substantive anti-terrorism law in line with the global consensus on the fight against terrorism."

· Earlier, The Hindu reported on 13th September: "In what is seen as the UPA government speaking with different voices over the need for States enacting tough anti-terror laws, the Union Home Ministry has not taken kindly to the suggestion of the National Security Adviser M.K. Narayanan favouring the Gujarat government's proposal to have its own law to deal with terrorist activities and organised crime. The NSA's suggestion was contained in a letter which he recently wrote to the Home Ministry. He reportedly saw no reason to turn down the request of the Gujarat government to have an anti-terror law. He also reportedly cited demands by a number of senior police officers both at the Central and State levels for enacting a comprehensive, tough anti-terror law. Mr. Narayanan did not see anything wrong in supporting such a demand."

· The Administrative Reforms Commission, appointed by the Government under the chairmanship of senior Congress leader Shri Veerappa Moily, strongly supported the need for stringent anti-terrorist law. Speaking to the media on 17th September, he said that "a strong anti-terror law with equally strong safeguards to prevent its misuse is needed."

On 24th September, Congress general secretary Shri Rahul Gandhi said, "There should be a strong law to deal with terror. A powerful law, not a failed law. POTA is a failed law."
In spite of these pronouncements, what is the net result? "No, no, we do not need a new law. Existing laws, if strengthened, are enough to fight terror."
How can India be safe under a Government that has no mind of its own, that speaks in so many voices, and that is led by a Prime Minister who has an office but no authority? It is difficult to find out who runs this Government and who takes the decisions.
Our commitment: To make India terror-free
Friends, there is no point any longer in demanding anything from this spineless and visionless Government. As they say in Hindi, the ulti ginati of this Government (reverse counting of its days in office) has begun. The people of India will dethrone the UPA rulers whenever the next Parliamentary elections are held.
However, this seminar is certainly a proper occasion for me to present some of our concrete promises, commitments and ideas to make India safe from terror.
1. If voted to power, the NDA will re-enact POTA. The critics of POTA have so far been unable to show a single shortcoming in it. Therefore, the least we expect from our friends in the Congress party is that, now that many of its senior functionaries have spoken in favour of a strong anti-terror law, they should support re-enactment of POTA in the 15th Lok Sabha.
I am saying this because the time has come to treat the fight against terrorism as a national issue requiring broad national consensus. It is in this spirit that I recently I wrote to former President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, wholeheartedly supporting his suggestion for a bipartisan approach to combat terrorism.
2. The BJP favours setting up a federal anti-terror agency, which has become absolutely necessary for evolving effective coordination between the Centre and the States — and also among States themselves — in intelligence gathering, intelligence exchange, action, investigation, prosecution and planning and execution of preventive operations.

The Vajpayee government, for the first time since Independence, had formulated an integrated policy for national security. A Group of Ministers, supported by experts' task forces (I had the privilege of heading this GoM), had made nearly 300 comprehensive recommendations for completely overhauling India's security apparatus and management in the areas of Defence, Intelligence, Internal Security and Border Management. The UPA Government has shown callous neglect towards implementation of these recommendations. The next NDA Government will take up this task with the highest priority.

Implementation of the recommendations of the Malimath Committee on overhauling the Criminal Justice System will be done in a timebound manner.

The chain of India's anti-terrorism apparatus can be only as strong as its weakest link. Today one of its weakest links is the local police station and its intelligence gathering capabilities. Therefore, modernization of the police force with adequate Central assistance, which had been started by the NDA Government, will be rapidly intensified.

Finally, I wish to make a fervent appeal to all sections of our society and polity: Let us not communalise the fight against terrorism. Terrorists have no religion. They are enemies of the nation and of humanity as a whole. Let us not imperil the security of India — and, going further, the very unity of India — by going soft in the war against these enemies. This is not a war that any a single party or any single community can win. It is a battle for the survival of India, in which all communities and all political parties are equal stake holders. We wanted to extend our whole-hearted support to the incumbent government for any positive action that it is prepared to take to combat terrorism. Unfortunately, it has not taken even a single initiative in this direction to which we could extend our support.

While enemies of the nation are uniting and coordinating their actions, it is sad that narrow electoral considerations are standing in the way of political parties and governments giving a concerted fight to the menace of terrorism. I do hope that the public opinion in this country will create required pressure for political parties and their leaders to think beyond electoral considerations and fight terrorism with single-minded determination.

One last point. The Navaratri festival has begun. It will conclude on Vijaya Dashami, which symbolizes the victory of Good over Evil. I suggest that, in addition to Ravan Dahan (burning of the effigy of Ravan), let Navaratri pandals all over the country also do Atankvaad Dahan (burning the effigy of the Demon of Terrorism). Let it symbolize our collective resolve to make India terror-free.

With these words, I declare the seminar open and wish it all success.

Thank you.

Police aids the cause of primary education in Jharkhand

Written by ANI
Saturday, 11 October 2008

Jamtara (Jharkhand), Oct 11 (ANI): Police in the Maoist insurgency affected district of Jamtara in Jharkhand is promoting education by constructing school buildings in the district.

The Police, which is engaged in containing Maoist violence, is also helping in spread of education in the district so that youth does not join Moaist ranks.

In a unique gesture, the district police took the initiative to construct a school building after seeking clearance and help from state education authorities.

The under construction building in Pithuadih village would have about 180 students when completed.

Police officials said that the district police head is keen to have the school ready as soon as possible.

"I told the villagers that our Superintendent of Police wanted the school here whatever the circumstances. I come here to see that people find a place to work here and work very well," said Nirmal Kumar, Station House Officer, Jamtara.

At present, about 140 students are studying in open and their studies are affected by the vagaries of weather. This is also leading to high drop-out rates.

"During the rains, we have to run from pillar to post and it affected the studies of the students. The district Superintendent of Police said that you should teach well here. The SP encouraged us and said that they will give the uniform for the children," said Kamal Singh, a teacher.

Education has been hit hard in many districts of Jharkhand due to Maoist insurgency. Whatever little infrastructure existing in the insurgency affected parts of the state has been badly hit.

The Maoists claim they are fighting for the rights of poor peasants and landless labourers. By Girija Shankar Ojha(ANI)

13 Chhattisgarh cops suspended for refusing to serve in Maoist land

October 11th, 2008 - 6:12 pm ICT by IANS -
Raipur, Oct 11 (IANS) The Chhattisgarh government Saturday suspended 13 policemen, including six inspectors, for refusing to accept transfers to the insurgency-hit Bastar region interiors.”We had no option left but to crack the whip on 13 policemen who defied the government transfer order and refused to join duty in Bastar region, despite repeated reminders,” R.K. Vij, inspector general (administration), told IANS.

The suspended policemen also include seven sub-inspectors. They were transferred in July-August to the interiors of Bastar where Maoists have been running a de facto administration since early 1980s.

“Dozens of more cops are lined up for receiving suspension orders for refusing to accept Bastar postings,” Vij stated, adding “we have just sent a list of four officers of deputy superintendent of police (DSP) rank to the government for suitable action”.

Top officials at the police headquarters here said, “This is the first lot of suspension, many more would be made in the coming weeks in a phased manner.”

According to sources, the police headquarter was taken by surprise when dozens of officials, from the rank of sub-inspector to DSP level flatly refused to accept postings in the Maoist-infested land.

“It affects the morale of the entire police force when cops are reluctant to take on Maoist militants, when the fact is that in the past two years we have pushed insurgents on the backfoot by carrying out several deadly attacks on their hideouts,” a source remarked.

Bastar region, which is split into five districts, carries the tag of being India’s Maoist terror nerve centre. The region witnessed killings of about 1,100 people since 2004, including of 726 civilians.

About 50,000 people have been uprooted in the region from their villages due to a battle between the insurgents and cadres of Salwa Judum, a government-backed civilian militia movement launched in June 2005 against Maoists.

The government has rehabilitated them in 22 different makeshift relief camps in Bijapur and Dantewada districts.

Naxalite activities aggravated Kandhamal situation: Naveen

Bhubaneswar (PTI): Terming as "unfortunate" the recent violence in Kandhamal, Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Saturday said that the left wing extremism has only aggravated the situation in the region which already had a long history of suspicion and anger among the communities there.

"The unfortunate incidents which took place in Kandhamal had a long history of suspicion and anger among the communities and the situation was also aggravated by activities of left wing extremists," Patnaik said.

Stating that the proposal to invoke Article 356 in Orissa was "politically motivated", he told reporters "Maoist role in the violence added another dimension to a complicated situation."

Maintaining that the state government had taken all steps to contain violence which erupted in the aftermath of VHP leader Laxamananda Saraswati's killing on August 23, he said 1000 people were arrested form across the state, including over 500 from Kandhamal district alone.

Claiming that there was practically no violence in Kandhamal for the last 11 days, Patnaik said that 53 companies of para-military forces and state armed police had been deployed in sensitive pockets of the riot-ravaged district.

He accused the Centre of not sending enough central forces when it was needed most. "We asked for the central forces on August 23, but they arrived here on August 27 when violence had significantly declined."

While the central forces arrived late, their movement was severely restricted due to hurdles, created by tree-trunks, across the roads at about 100 places, he said.

Suspected Maoists kill two in Jharkhand

CHATRA (JHARKHAND): Suspected Maoists have killed two persons, including a self-styled commander of the banned Tritiya Prastuti Committee (TPC) and injured a villager in Chatra district, the police said here on Friday.

TPC activist Nilesh alias Kariman Ganju was watching a cultural programme at Kunda village late on Thursday when about 50 suspected Maoists surrounded him and opened fire, Assistant Superintendent of Police Kumar Abhishek said.

A villager was injured when a bullet hit him. The TPC is a breakaway group of the CPI (Maoist). — PTI

Woman maoist gives up

Express News Service First Published : 10 Oct 2008 03:59:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 10 Oct 2008 11:41:23 AM IST

VIZIANAGARAM: A Maoist, Kolaka Saraswati alias Chamanti (22), surrendered before Parvathipuram OSD M Ravindranath Babu at his office here today.

Chamanti was a member of the Nagavali dalam in Srikakulam division. She belongs to Chinnageesada village in Gummalakshmipuram mandal in the district. Speaking to mediapersons at his office, the OSD said the Maoist confessed that she had decided to join the mainstream as she was fed up with the dalam’s activities. Efferts would be made to rehabilitate her according to the rules laid down by the Government for the purpose, he added.

Chamanti was involved in two murder cases at Atchaba village of Gummalakshmipuram mandal and Rebba village of Komarada mandal in 2007.

Naxalites on mind, Nagpur to get forensic unit

Aishwarya A
Oct 10, 2008

Pune, October 9 With the Naxalite threat topping security concern for the Maharashtra Police, investigation of Naxalite related offences in the state is now slated to become less time-consuming with a state-of-the-art forensic unit being opened in Nagpur. It will deal with arms and ammunitions cases from the Vidarbha region.

While a Regional Forensic Science Laboratory already exists in Nagpur, it now has its own super speciality Ballistics Division to exclusively deal with Naxalite cases.

“Every year we receive over 250 cases of arms and ammunition from Vidharba which are solely investigated by the Mumbai lab thus far. However, with a ballistics division in Nagpur, all cases will be sent there, thus preventing the time spent in sealing the items and getting them to Mumbai,” said Dr Rukmani Krishnamurthy, Director of Forensic Science Laboratories.

The Naxal-affected districts are all located in Vidarbha, and police-Naxalite clashes here have claimed several lives and led to the seizure of large hauls of sophisticated weaponry.The Nagpur lab is the first in the country to have a super specialty unit at the regional level. While the Nagpur laboratory has just one ballistics expert at present, Kirshanamurthy said it would receive more personnel after a shuffling process.

8 kidnapped by Maoists

Staff Reporter

KHAMMAM: Eight persons, including seven tribal youths, were kidnapped by naxalites of the CPI (Maoist) from four forest-villages of Khammam -- all located close to the inter-State border with Chhattisgarh, according to reports. The police at Chintur station made a general diary entry of the kidnapping cases on information furnished by the village revenue officials on Thursday.

A large tribal group comprising mainly the kin of the kidnapped persons from the villages of Dongala Jaggaram, Narsingapeta, Alliguidem and Bandigumpu embarked upon a massive search in the Bastar forests in the neighbouring Bijapur district.

The group was reportedly prevented by militants from entering some villages in Gollapalli police station limits -- a pocket considered to be the Maoist heartland. Members of sanghams – village-level committees floated by the Maoists had assured them of the safe return of all those kidnapped. The tribal group that drew a blank in their search came back to Chintur in the day. They, however, declined to take the help of police fearing a Maoist backlash.

Security personnel taking a hit in Naxal areas

NEW DELHI, Oct. 9: Paramilitary forces are suffering heavy losses in Naxal-affected areas, reveal statistics on the number of personnel who died in action in the first nine months of 2008.

The data suggests that more than 60 per cent of these security personnel lost their lives in the Naxal-affected areas, mainly in Chattisgarh and Jharkhand. “Of the 49 security personnel who died in action, 30 alone were killed while fighting Naxals. In Kashmir, which witnessed violence during the Amarnath land transfer controversy this year, we lost eight security personnel,” said an official of the CRPF, the key paramilitary force deployed for maintaining internal security.

The arms and ammunition lost in Naxal areas by CRPF is also highest. While 12 arms were looted by Naxals in Chattisgarh, the ammunition figure has crossed the 900 mark, the official said.

The force had 189 encounters with anti-social elements till September this year. Chattisgarh and Jharkhand account for 106 of them. Kashmir is another area where CRPF had 48 encounters with terrorists.

The CRPF has killed 168 terrorists, including 80 in Kashmir, 30 in Jharkhand and 17 Naxals in Chattisgarh, the official said. “The force arrested over 1500 militants, seized 1557 arms, and 57,460 ammunition and 7,580 kg of explosives,” he added. n SNS

Rs 10 cr for BPL families

Rs 10 cr for BPL families

Statesman News Service
MALKANGIRI, Oct. 10: Adhikar Micro-finance will provide financial assistance of Rs 10 crore rupees for the upgradation of the houses of four thousand Below Poverty Line (BPL) families in Khurda, Puri, Jajpur, Bolangir, Ganjam and Nayagarh. Each BPL member will be given a loan of twenty five thousand rupees which will be recovered from them within two years and four months time limit.
The organisation has a micro-finance network in 13 out of 30 districts of the state at present and has already extended house building loan of seventy lakh to its 350 members of Khurda and Nayagarh district in last two years. It has about seventy thousand members in the state and aims to aid all its BPL members in this house up gradation scheme in a phased manner. The habitat upgradation disbursement is scheduled to start from 14 October.
A new branch of the organisation was inaugurated at Balimela in Malkangiri on Gandhi Jayanti. With the opening of this office the number of branches of Adhikar Micro-finance has risen to two in the district and thirty eight in the entire state. The first branch of the organisation was set up in the district in 2007.
A number of eminent citizens attended the opening function including the manager SBI Balimela branch Mr Sashinath Pradhan, chairperson Balimela NAC Mr Pramod Kumar Sahoo, the branch Manager. Koraput Central Co-operative Bank and the inspector in charge of Balimela police station.
The speakers lauded the efforts of the organisation in spreading micro-finance activities in the Naxal infested region and expressed the hope that the rural poor and downtrodden who do not have access to financial assistance will benefit from the schemes of the organization.
The new branch targets to rope in at least two thousand members within a span of one year. It may be mentioned, Malkangiri branch of Adhikar Micro-finance has already encompassed more than one thousand members during its one-year tenure out of which about eight hundred are engaged in bidi rolling activities

Two Naxals killed in Orissa

Rating: Debabrata Mohanty
Posted: Oct 11, 2008 at 0006 hrs IST

Bhubaneswar, Oct 10 After getting their noses bloodied by the Maoists repeatedly over the last few months, the Orissa Police on Friday claimed that they killed two Maoists, one of them a hardcore woman cadre, in the forests of Koraput district.
A joint team of the Andhra Pradesh Police’s Special Task Force and the Orissa Police scouring the area managed to kill the two — part of a three-member Naxalite team — in the Almonda area of the district under Narayanpatna police station on the Andhra Pradesh-Orissa border on Friday afternoon.

The woman, identified as Jyoti (25) was a member of the Koraput Divisional Committee(KDC) of the Peoples’ Liberation Guerrilla Army. A native of Srikakulam district in Andhra Pradesh, Jyoti took part in several high-profile rebels attacks including the one on the Nayagarh police training school in February this year.

The identity of the other deceased Maoist is not known. The third member of the group, Raju, the area commander of the KDC, however, escaped with some injury. Panda said with the killing of the two Maoists, the KDC has been visibly weakened as it comes after two of their active members — Aruna and her boyfriend — eloped leaving the Naxal bosses fuming.

Tribal Affairs Ministry setting up Tribal Information System

New Delhi, Oct 9 (PTI) In a bid to get policy inputs for running and launching various programmes for the welfare of Scheduled Tribes, the Ministry of Tribal Affairs is setting up a National Tribal Information System (NTIS) for collection of statistics and other information about the community.

The NTIS will be responsible for preparation and collection of secondary data from various sources including the information generated in various sectors and fields by the various departments or ministries of the government.

It will also link up with the tribal study centres and other research and academic institutions through suitable information networking systems.

"The NTIS will periodically analyse the tribal statistics and other information collected and keep the ministry informed of trends and findings essentially for the purpose of policy inputs and also mid-course corrections," an official told PTI.

The NTIS, which will be a kind of tribal statistics and information centre of the ministry, is to be set up in collaboration with a national level institute or university, he said.

"The setting up of NTIS as a central data collection unit would turn out to be a system of paramount importance for the ministry especially in policy formulation and decision making," the official said.

"There are still several things we need to know about the tribals for planning welfare schemes and programmes for the development of the community," he added. PTI

Thursday, October 09, 2008

‘Maoist’ threat letters frighten teachers

Nani Gopal Pal
PURULIA, Oct. 9: Residents of Purulia and its adjoining areas, specifically teachers, are living in constant fear of Maoists after six teachers received threat letters recently.
People are afraid of criminals who might try to extort money from them as they cannot differentiate between Maoists and hooligans. Some teachers have been asked to send money to a particular place and administrators of a few schools were also cautioned by them.
Earlier, similar cases were recorded in Naxal-infested Bandwan, Manbazar, Jhalda, Barabazar, Joypur, Kotshila, Baro, Arsha and Baharampur. Now it is being reported in non-Maoist areas like Hura, Kashipur, Raghunathpur and Para.
A few teachers received such letters, either through registered post or courier service. Sometimes, they were sent letters through unknown special messengers, who posed as postal workers. Some teachers informed the nearest police station but as they were afraid for their safety, they urged police officers to keep the matter a secret.
Teachers and other officials of the concerned educational institution did not want people to know about the letters and were reluctant to meet journalists to talk about the issue. An official of the educational institution requested The Statesman not to disclose the name of sources “for safety reasons.”
However, Mr Rajesh Yadav, newly appointed superintendent of police, Purulia, ruled out the possibility of a real Maoist threat and said he was aware of the cases at all 21 police stations.
Meanwhile, a tribal woman, Mrs Surajmani Murmu, a resident of Lethasole village in Bandwan block of Purulia, who was arrested 90 days ago, alleging involvement of the bomb blast on 11 May, was released on bail, as police failed to issue chargesheet against her

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Maoists target cop mobility

Dipankar Bose

RANCHI, Oct. 8: Maoist extremists operating in Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, West Bengal and Orissa have decided to do away with mobile phones. An express order has been issued by the co-ordination committee of the five states and the order has been made binding especially for all lower level cadres of the outfit.
The reason for shunning the communication device, which the extremists have been using for a long time now, is the effectiveness with which police, especially in Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Orissa have been tracking the mobile signals and tracing their whereabouts. “GPRS-enabled mobile handsets have been issued to all officer-in-charge level officers in the extremism affected districts of the state and they are utilizing them fully. Special training sessions were organised for these officers and the move is paying dividends. We have successfully nabbed at least a dozen extremists over the past two months by putting their mobile numbers under round-the-clock surveillance,” says a senior officer of the Jharkhand state police headquarters.

And this is the reason that the Maoist co-ordination committee has come up with its latest order during its meeting held on 30 September in Jharkhand.

According to sources, during the meeting senior Maoist leaders agreed that mobile phones are creating serious troubles for the party.

"Not only are the police using this gadget, there are reports that a section of villagers in Jharkhand and Bihar have been provided mobile phones by the police and they are using the cellular network to trace the whereabouts of the party’s cadres", was the opinion of at least three senior leaders of the co-ordination committee, according to sources.

As a counter-strategy, the Maoists have decided to attack the mobile phone operators’ towers installed in the villages to provide cellular services in the rural areas of all five states. Maoist cadres in Bihar have already unleashed a series of attacks on Reliance and Airtel mobile phone towers. On Thursday night itself, armed Maoist cadres destroyed four towers in Eraura and Ketaki villages under the jurisdiction of Devpolice station in the extremism-hit Aurangabad district of Bihar, which lies along the border of Jharkhand.

“The extremists are deliberately targeting the mobile phone towers as they want to disrupt the communication network. They do not understand the fact that these moves will move them further away from their erstwhile rural base. Moreover, we are also framing a new strategy to counter this latest move.

Centre launches spl scheme for naxal-hit districts in 8 states

New Delhi, Oct 8 (PTI) The Centre has launched a special scheme for hardest-hit naxal-affected districts of eight states to construct hostels to promote education among tribals and contain dropout rates.
The scheme initiated by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs offers 100 per cent financial assistance to the naxal-affected States/Union Territories from the Centre for the purpose of benefiting students belonging to Scheduled Tribes (STs) and also primitive tribal groups, sources in the ministry said.

The scheme has so far been made available to a total of 33 districts listed as "naxal-affected" by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in the states of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa, Bihar, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, he said.

"The ministry has launched the scheme to supplement the efforts of state governments for the promotion of education and contain dropout rates among tribals living in the highly naxal-affected districts in these eight states of the country," he said.

"While illiteracy is a general problem for the country cutting across caste, religion, region and such other barriers, its total effect on the life and status of the ST, especially those living in naxal-affected areas stand out prominently as an area of national focus," a senior official of the ministry said.

Under the scheme, the hostels can be constructed for middle, secondary, college and university level of education and also Vocational Training Centres. PTI

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Maoists arrested

Baripada, Oct. 7: Two Maoists, including a boy cadre, were arrested from the dense Satkosia forests of Orissa's Mayurbhanj district, police said today.
The duo, identified as 25-year-old Murali Purty alias Raju and 12-year-old Arjun Mahakud alias Dasuram, had confessed that they were involved in the Operation Ropeway at Nayagarh in February this year and several other incidents, Mayurbhanj Super-intendent of Police Mr Dayal Gangwar told reporters.
Police seized a number of handbills, a transistor and a book listing the reasons for eliminating VHP leader Laxamananda Saraswati. n pti

Maoists' training camp busted

8 Oct 2008, 0435 hrs IST,TNN

PATNA: Police on Tuesday claimed to have foiled a Maoists' plan to hold a training camp on the border of Rohtas and Kaimur districts.

A special operation, in which six CRPF companies, three STF units and police personnel of the two districts were engaged, was launched on October 3 and it culminated into destruction of the training camp late on Monday night.

Police said though no encounter took place as the Naxalites melted into nearby forests, police recovered three land mines from the spot. Top Maoist leaders are believed to have escaped to adjoining UP and Jharkhand states.

The raiding team also destroyed bunker-like structures and some other temporary structures, constructed for imparting training in gunbattle.

Police sources said around 400 CPI (Maoist) activists had gathered in villages falling under Nauhatta and Sasaram blocks of Rohtas district and Adhaura block of Kaimur district. "We also had information that the outfit's special armed wings from Chattisgarh and Jharkhand had come to impart training to the Naxalites," said a police officer who was part of the operation.

He said police had the geographical disadvantage as the raiding teams had to use the routes which were visible from the training camp site. "It helped the Naxalites retreat," he added.

IG (operations) S K Bhardwaj, who camped at the site to supervise the operation, said police raided Panda, Goria, Nakti Bhawana, Dhansa, Chaiti, Dugdha and adjoining villages after getting intelligence reports about the training camp. "Though we had informed the UP and Jharkhand police about the operation, the extremists managed to sneak into the two states," he said.

Bhardwaj, however, claimed police had the upper hand throughout the raid and it also allowed the raiding team to have an understanding of the terrain which would be of great use in future operations against Naxalites in the area.

Armed rebels on the prowl in Singhbhum Jungle

- Police intensify vigil in Saranda forests

Jamshedpur, Oct 7: Police have reportedly moved additional paramilitary forces into the Saranda forests after an intelligence report pointed to a “heavy presence of armed Naxalite guerrillas” in West Singhbhum’s jungles.
Superintendent of police (West Singhbhum) Sudhir Kumar Jha confirmed the news. The sources also stated that such a “large presence” was reported after a gap of seven years.

Intelligence personnel suspect that the armed guerrillas belonging to CPI(Maoist) may be gathering at the spot for a meeting, however, they doubt the possibility of such a meeting, as the rebels recently observed an establishment week from September 21-28.

“The rebels might be planning either to strike at Saranda or they might be assembling there for some training programme. Whatever may be the reason the administration has to be alert and take note,” said the intelligence report.

“Heavily-armed Naxalites have recently been spotted entering Saranda through Sundergarh in Orissa. They might have some plan, while operating in the Saranda, but we are prepared to thwart any attempts to create any violence in the district,” said Jha.

Talking to The Telegraph, the superintendent of police stated that the number of rebels spotted were about 100 constituting two platoons already stationed at Saranda, a haven for the rebels.

“Rebel platoon-22 and 39 belonging to Saranda and Porhat areas respectively, are already here. In each platoon there are 40 rebels, but there are 100 additional rebels coming in, making the situation a bit more sensational,” Jha added.

Jha added that anticipating trouble, the West Singhbhum district administration has deputed police and paramilitary forces across Saranda. “We are closely monitoring the situation and would like to drive the rebels out for which a strategy is being chalked out,” he said.

Saranda had been an epicentre of rebel activities in 2001 and 2002. The rebels had successfully executed two major strikes on the police force then causing over 40 policemen to die.

That apart, rebels razed forest guesthouses and lodges across Saranda during that period. The third major strike that the rebels carried out in 2004 claimed over 24 policemen.

Christian Maoists killed Swami: BJP MP

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New Delhi, October 08, 2008
First Published: 00:34 IST(8/10/2008)
Last Updated: 01:14 IST(8/10/2008)

First he said Christians, and not Maoists, killed Swami Lakshmanananda Saraswati. Now, after a Maoist leader appeared on TV claiming responsibility, BJP parliamentarian from Orissa M.A. Kharabela Swain believes he can still stick justify his stand, simply by adding a prefix.

The 55-year-old legislator from Balasore now says “Christian Maoists” killed the Swami on August 23, which led to riots in Kandhamal and other parts of Orissa.“Till recently, the Maoists hailed Swamiji as pro-poor and messiah of the downtrodden. Then why should they turn against him? Also the attack did not occur as a Maoist operation,” he wrote.
“The killing was carried out by Christian Maoists. In most parts of Orissa, Christians have joined the Maoist brigade in large numbers,” he told Hindustan Times.

Swain had written an article in RSS mouthpiece Organiser dated September 14 almost defending the Maoists. He said the murder could at best be the handiwork of a splinter group of Maoists hired by missionaries, as the Maoist style of functioning is different.

“Till recently, the Maoists hailed Swamiji as pro-poor and messiah of the downtrodden. Then why should they turn against him? Also the attack did not occur as a Maoist operation,” he wrote.

“They would not have attacked when preparations for a grand puja were on and when there was a possibility of hundreds of people getting killed.”

This defence of Maoists was startling as it came from a BJP man, given the fact that his party and the Sangh Parivar as a whole have always been ideologically anti-Left.

When asked by HT about this ideological U-turn, Swain said he remained anti-Left. But he came out with another statement to prove that he had jumbled up his ideological understanding. He said the Maoist Sabyasachi Panda, who owned up the murder two days ago, was “talking like a Congress man” by using words like “secular” and “communal”.

“Maoists and Naxals never make a distinction between secular and communal,” he said, although Left organisations in India have always claimed to be secular and anti-communal.

Reflecting the same ideological confusion, VHP leader Mohan Joshi on Tuesday said Maoists had never been against religious leaders.

He added that Maoists would not kill a Swami who worked among the poor, in a position similar to the one taken by Swain in the Organiser article. This is at odds with the consistent anti-Left line of Hindutva leaders.

First Published : 06 Oct 2008 10:28:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 06 Oct 2008 10:33:09 AM ISTBHUBANESWAR: Why are the Maoists so insistent on shouldering

First Published : 06 Oct 2008 10:28:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 06 Oct 2008 10:33:09 AM ISTBHUBANESWAR: Why are the Maoists so insistent on shouldering responsibility of Swami Lakshamanananda Saraswati’s killing? That too after releasing three letters to media during last one month claiming their role in the murder.

Weird as it may sound, but by ‘repeating’ their claim to a select media group Saturday through an interview by a leader of their State chapter that they were behind the August 23 killing has created more suspicion about their intention.

After the Swami’s murder, CPI (Maoist)’s State Organisation Committee issued three releases to lay claim to the incident. Secretary of the committee Sunil made it amply clear that the radicals killed the VHP leader because they were opposed to his practices in the tribal district.

In fact, the Maoists had reportedly left a leaflet at the Tumudibandh ashram - where the incident had occurred - staking claim. The State Government too, in the initial days, toed the line that the murder was the handiwork of the radicals, but never went beyond that.

Surprisingly, the Maoist outfit also kept quiet for quite a while before it formally came out with a release to own up responsibility following it up with two others in quick succession. In all the three, the radicals had made it amply clear why they did it.

‘‘So what’s the need for making such a fuss about it now? Are they trying to shield anybody? With saffron outfits blaming it on Christian militants, the latest round of revelation has only managed to strengthen the former’s claims that the radicals are taking sides. Are they?’’ a senior police officer said.

However, the fact remains that the Orissa Government has shot itself in its feet by not persisting with the Maoist theory after the first few days.

Or, is it a well thought out plan to divert attention from the strife the district is now witnessing since the Centre is breathing down Naveen Patnaik Government’s neck and the Maoist leader just a stooge? If yes, who is behind this orchestration? The interview has thrown up a number of such questions.

Moreover, it has also raised serious questions on efficiency of the State Government and its police force. If the Maoist leader, wanted by police after the spate of recent violence in the State, can organise an interview, is it difficult for the police to pin him down? Does it not speak volumes of the intelligence network? Or are they going soft on him deliberately?

Arms recovered from Orissa forests

Baripda (Orissa), Oct 7 (PTI) In their stepped up anti-naxal operation, police here seized huge catche of arms and ammunition, including four landmines, from the forests of Kulapata and Dhanatangara in Mayurbhanj district.
Superintendent of Police, Mayurbhanj, Dayal Gangwar told reporters here today that the seizures were made during an intense combing operation by the Special Operation Group (SOG) in the forests.

Besides four landmines, detonators, wires and gun power were recovered from the forests, he added. PTI

'The Naxal problem is not just a security issue'

October 7, 2008

Nandini Sundar, professor of sociology, Delhi School of Economics, and historian and writer Ramchandra Guha have filed a petition to stop the Chhattisgarh government from supporting and encouraging the Salwa Judum, a people's movement to counter the Naxalites.
The state government has denied that the Salwa Judum was a state-sponsored movement. The Supreme Court has disapproved arming the Salwa Judum, and the case continues.

According to a report by Human Rights Watch, caught in a deadly tug-of-war between an armed Maoist movement on one side, and the government security forces plus a vigilante group called Salwa Judum on the other, civilians have suffered a host of human rights abuses, including killings, torture, and forced displacement. The violence has destroyed hundreds of villages and uprooted tens of thousands of people from their homes.

The armed movement by Maoist groups spans four decades and 13 states across India. They purport to defend the rights of the poor, especially the landless, Dalits and tribal communities.

Sundar's book Subalterns and Sovereigns: An Anthropological History of Bastar traces the expansion of the colonial and the post-colonial state in Bastar, central India, between 1854 and 2006. The author's account of the region is at once the outcome of an intellectual as well as personal encounters with the region and its politics.

Sundar spoke to Rujuta Paradkar about the policy and politics adopted by the government of Chhattisgarh, the Salwa Judum and "the way in which people fall through the cracks of the democratic process".

High-level meeting on security for Naxal-hit states

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07 October, 2008 10:22:43
The Union Home Ministry has convened a high-level meeting next week for implementation of first phase of the Rs 500 crore special scheme which aims to enhance infrastructure for security forces in Naxal-affected states.

The October 14 meeting, which will be attended by DGPs and Home Commissioners of eight worst Naxal-hit states besides Home Ministry officials, will chalk out strategies to implement the scheme that aims at increasing security personnel's mobility, securing camping grounds and helipads at strategic locations.

"For the current fiscal, Rs 100 crore has been earmarked, while Rs 400 crore would be spent in the remaining period of the 11th Plan," a senior Home Ministry official said.

The new scheme will adequately provide for crucial infrastructure requirement that are critical to policing and security needs in the field but are not adequately included in any existing scheme.

Construction of roads along railway tracks to enable the forces to ensure safe movement of trains, improvement of connectivity with high-risk police stations and construction of boundary walls around police posts are some of the other focus areas of the ambitions scheme.

"Initially the scheme will be implemented in 14 districts of eight states. Though, we have received proposals for eight districts only, we have decided to go ahead with it," the official said.

The scheme was approved at the September 11 meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Over 70 districts in the country are affected by Left-wing extremism, which has been described by the Prime Minister as a "virus" and the biggest internal security threat.

In the continuing Naxal violence in around a dozen states, over 400 people, including over 150 securitymen, have been killed so far in 2008.

The government recently approved formation of a 10,000-strong special anti-naxal force 'COBRA' – Combat Battalion for Resolute Action - to tackle the menace.

---65 times read ---

Three Maoists held, guns seized

Theni (PTI): Three suspected Maoists have been arrested and guns were seized from their possession at Varushanadu area in this district on Tuesday.

The three were arrested based on an intelligence tip off and three country made guns were seized from them, police sources here told PTI.

In another incident an illegal arms factory was unearthed in Thevaram area and 15 pistols were seized, they said.

Patrolling has been intensified in the hills near Srivilliputhur town in Virudhunagar district following reports on movement of armed gang in the belt, they said.

Maoist commander gunned down in Chhattisgarh

October 7th, 2008 - 1:37 pm ICT by IANS -
Raipur, Oct 7 (IANS) A Maoist commander was gunned down early Tuesday by a joint team of the Chhattisgarh police and the paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) in a forest in the state’s restive southern region.The Maoist was killed after a gun battle between the security forces and the rebels in Bijapur district of the Bastar region, some 500 km south of capital Raipur.

“The combing team challenged a group of armed Maoists and a tribal commander was killed after a brief gun battle while about a dozen of his aides managed to escape into the nearby forests,” District Superintendent of Police Ankit Garg told IANS.

Police seized the body of the Maoist along with four 12-bore guns and a tiffin bomb

Monday, October 06, 2008

Two arrested for killing Hindu leader in Orissa

Bhubaneswar, Oct 7 (IANS) Two Maoists were arrested Monday on the charge of killing a Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader in Orissa Aug 23 that led to communal violence in the state.

"We have arrested two persons, with guns and masks they used to kill Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati," state Inspector General of Police (Crime Branch) Arun Kumar Ray told IANS.

He said the arrested persons have confessed their crime.

"We have also detained one more person. We will nab some more people soon," he said, adding that raids were on at various places.

The arrests came after one of the most wanted Maoist leaders, interacting with a select group of reporters from an undisclosed location Saturday, said he had ordered the killing of the VHP leader.

"We ordered the death penalty for him," Sabyasachi Panda, the Maoist leader, had said.

On Monday, the police also arrested about 40 more people in Kandhamal district for rioting and other crimes during communal violence that has claimed 35 lives and left thousands homeless over the past five weeks.

Officials said the violence was on the wane.

"The total number of people arrested for their involvement directly or indirectly in the violence would be around 1,000 over the past month," a senior state home department official told IANS.

Of them, 500 people have been arrested in Kandhamal district alone.

Many of those arrested are linked to Hindu organisations like the VHP and Bajrang Dal. Some of them are also members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the official said.

"The situation is under control. No violence has been reported from any part of the district in the past three days," Kandhamal police chief S. Praveen Kumar told IANS Monday.

BJP warns against imposing President's Rule in Orissa

New Delhi, Oct 7 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Monday warned the government against imposing President's Rule in Orissa, where communal riots during the past month and a half have claimed at least 35 lives.

“I warn the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government (against) imposing President's Rule in Orissa. The people are already fed up, and this will prove to be too expensive,” said BJP's prime ministerial hopeful L.K. Advani at the party's Vijay Sankalp rally in Delhi.

Advani said the government should also tackle violence in the Congress-ruled Assam.

“Why don't they do something about Assam's condition, which is under their governance? How come insurgents from Bangladesh are coming in?” asked Advani.

He blamed Bangladeshis for terrorism in India and said it all started with Pakistani military dictator late General Zia ul Haq, who wanted to destabilise India by terrorism.

Earlier in the day, BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu also voiced his party's concerns over the possibility of imposition of President's Rule in Orissa, where the BJP is a key partner in the ruling alliance led by the Biju Janata Dal.

"The BJP would like to warn the government not to be adventurous in Orissa and not to impose Article 356," Naidu told reporters here.

Article 356 of the Indian constitution enables the central government to dismiss any state government in case of the law and order breakdown. The president then governs the state, and executive authority is delegated to the state governor.

The United Progressive Alliance government has been under pressure from several fronts to impose President's Rule in Orissa, where raging violence against minority Christian community has left 35 people dead in the past 45 days.

Advani congratulated the BJP's chief ministerial candidate in Delhi, Vijay Kumar Malhotra, at the rally and said: “I have been watching Malhotraji since Jan Sangh days from 1958. He is the most experienced and capable person to take forward the country.”

Sushma Swaraj also attended the rally and said that it was time for the Sheila Dikshit-led government to go.

“The state's law and order have gone haywire under the Congress government and our chief minister accuses an innocent lady killed on road of adventurism,” Swaraj said.

She was referring to the murder of Headlines Today journalist Saumya Vishwanathan. Vishwanathan, 25, was found dead in her car in Vasant Kunj area of south Delhi around 3.30 a.m. September 30 when she was returning from work to her home in Sector-C of Vasant Kunj. The police are investigating the case though they have no clues, no leads.

Swaraj also accused Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of not being able to see the plight of the people because of high inflation.

“Our prime minister, who's a great economist, says that high prices are reflective of a progressive nation but can't he see the pain of the poor in the country, who've been hit worst by it,” Swaraj asked.

V.K. Malhotra also spoke at the rally and said a new world-class city should not be built on the graveyard of the old.

“Sheila Dikshit should realise that regularisation of unauthorised colonies is very important for the poor, if we have to make water and electricity available to them,” said Malhotra.

Demand to ban Bajrang Dal to distract attention: BJP

Lucknow, Oct 7 (IANS) The sole intention of some parties demanding a ban on the Bajrang Dal and Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) was to distract public attention from increasing cases of terrorism, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has alleged.

"The Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government has failed to contain terror activities. As a result, they are now unnecessarily demanding a ban on our organisations," Uttar Pradesh BJP spokesperson H.N. Dixit told reporters here Monday.

He referred to Azamgarh, home to the two suspected terrorists killed in the Jamia Nagar shootout last month for their alleged involvement in the Sep 13 serial bombings in Delhi, and said, "Chief Minister Mayawati must convene an all-party meet to formulate a strategy to combat terror."


Advani cautions against President’s Rule

New Delhi Bureau

Says UPA government is only interested in vote bank politics; deplores violence in Orissa

L.K. Advani

NEW DELHI: Senior BJP leader and party’s prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani on Monday cautioned the United Progressive Alliance Government against imposing President’s Rule in Orissa.

“You have misused all the institutions, but misusing the Constitution there will prove very costly,” he said at the ‘Vijay Sankalp Rally’ organised by the party at V.P. House here to support the candidature of Vijay Kumar Malhotra as Delhi’s chief ministerial candidate for the Assembly polls.

Raising the issue of terror and violence, Mr. Advani said while there was massive infiltration in Assam and Bodo tribals were being killed by Bangladeshi infiltrators there, the government was not concerned. Rather it was keen on picking on Orissa, which is ruled by an NDA constituent, despite Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik having acted on the matter.

Deploring the violence in Orissa, Mr. Advani said: “I have met the Christian leaders there and stated that we will not tolerate violence against them.” Wondering why the Union Home Minister was not equally concerned at the situation in Assam or had not stepped in during the Nandigram violence in West Bengal, the BJP leader cautioned against any drastic measure.

Noting that just the way 9/11 was the single biggest act of terror till day, the December 13 attack on Parliament House in 2001 was equally big, Mr. Advani expressed concern at how author Arundhati Roy has, in her book, held the Indian Government and agencies responsible for it. “This is suicidal thinking that is unheard of and now when Inspector Mohan Chand Sharma has laid down his life for the country while fighting terrorists in Jamia Nagar, similar questions on the encounter are being raised,” he lamented.

“The UPA Government does not want to save India or its people and is only interested in vote bank politics,” he said, adding “the BJP was not a victim of such politics”.

Stating that “people are fed up with the Central Government and want an end to it as during its tenure prices have shot up and terrorism has increased,” Mr. Advani said the same was true of Delhi, which is the country in miniature, as it has people from all parts.

In his address, Prof. Malhotra said the party was preparing its manifesto and charge sheet against the Delhi Government for its all-round failure.

He said plans were being drawn to make Delhi beautiful, happy, and secure, and appealed to Mr. Advani to provide full Statehood to Delhi on becoming Prime Minister. Handing over its law and order along with land to the Delhi Government would help to improve the situation drastically.

Prof. Malhotra charged that the Congress governments at the Centre and in Delhi not only lacked the will to tackle terrorism but even stooped to dishonouring martyrs like Inspector Mohan Chand Sharma. “Inspector Sharma’s father had on the day of his cremation stated that he would not like his son’s sacrifice to go waste, but now he and Sharma’s widow are pleading that the government stop dishonouring the brave cop. It is shameful that while questions are raised on encounters, terrorists are glorified. Who will fight for the country in such circumstances,” he asked.

“Constitutional misadventure”

Imposition of President’s Rule would amount to a “constitutional misadventure,” party leader M. Venkaiah Naidu said here. “Use Article 356 at your own peril… Such a step would once again ensure a thumping victory for the Biju Janata Dal-BJP coalition in Orissa.”

Mr. Naidu denied that the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and the Bajrang Dal were behind the heinous acts of violence against Christians in Kandhamal district. “The root cause is the social conflict between tribals and converted Christians belonging to Scheduled Castes,” he said.

Mr. Naidu and BJP general secretary Ram Lal recently visited the State on the directions of BJP president Rajnath Singh and met party leaders, several Ministers and the Chief Minister.

Mr. Naidu charged the Centre with “not understanding” what was going on in Kandhamal. In response to a question on religious conversions, he said: “In my view, there is need for a common anti-conversion law for the whole country.”

He admitted that several States, including Orissa, did have such a law. But had any prosecution taken place in Orissa under the law that forbids forced conversions or conversion by allurement? “I have no information. I will collect the statistics and let you know,” he told a reporter.

Asked whether the State government failed to implement the law on forced conversions, Mr. Naidu did not respond. He was asked about reports of threats to those in relief camps that they would not be allowed to go back to their villages unless they re-converted to Hinduism. “Those reports are wrong,” he said. Mr. Naidu rejected the view that naxalites had killed VHP activist Lakshmanananda as claimed by them.

NHRC justifies Salwa Judum operations

Gyan Varma
Tuesday, October 07, 2008 02:14 IST

NEW DELHI: The controversial anti-Naxal vigilante army in Chhattisgarh, the Salwa Judum, got a major boost from the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) which in a report to the supreme court last week justified it as a “spontaneous reaction by the tribals to defend themselves against the “reign of terror unleashed by the Naxalites”.

The apex court had directed the NHRC to investigate the allegations made in a writ petition by Nandini Sundar alleging large-scale human rights violations by the Salwa Judum and security forces.

The three-member team found tribals were denied of basic healthcare facilities, right to education, marriage, to follow their religious beliefs and forced into human trafficking at gunpoint by the Naxalites.

The team also found that Naxalites were using “tyrannical ways” and had hacked if they tried to resist or question the dictates of the Naxalites.

“The Naxalites interfere in the day-to-day life of the tribals — in family matters, marriages and religious beliefs. They force the tribals to send one boy or girl from each family to become a member. There are instances of exploitation of girls by the naxalites,” says the report.

After detailed discussions with the local tribals of Bastar region, the members also found out that “whenever any villager tried to question their conduct or raise his voice, he was silenced forever. In some of the massacres, many innocent people were killed by the Naxalites in the most despicable manner, including repeated stabbing and slitting of the victims’ throats in front of other hostages or villagers”.

The commission also said the right to life of tribals is being practically enjoyed only at the mercy of Naxalites and “anyone who tries to raise a voice against their tyrannical ways has to pay with his life. They allow young children to study till class V and target schools”.

“Salwa Judum started as a reaction by the tribals of Chhattisgarh to protect themselves against the Naxalites but it was later supported by the state government. The NHRC had found the allegations to be distortions by the human rights organisations,” said Ajay Sahni, security expert.

The investigative team also found that naxalites had blocked all development activities and any contractor who dares to take up civil work is eliminated in no time.

“This report is a refreshing change and the court will take a view but the larger issue remains, do the victims of Naxal violence have human rights or not? Naxals kill innocents with impunity,” said Ravi Shankar Prasad, in-charge general secretary Chhattisgarh.

Rebel hero or the most wanted

Rating: Debabrata Mohanty
Posted: Oct 07, 2008 at 2359 hrs IST
Bhubaneswar, October 6 A mathematics graduate from a college in the temple town of Puri, this scrawny and fair man, with a height of 5 feet 6 inches and sporting a beard, betrays no signs that mark him the most wanted man in Orissa. But ask senior police officials and they will detail how Sabyasachi Panda planned and executed two attacks on the police in the last two years. The police have lodged 20 cases of murder, extortion and robbery against him.
Sabyasachi Panda, 41, was born to Ramesh Panda, a freedom fighter-turned CPM leader-turned BJD leader from Ranapur area of Nayagarh district. The most wanted Naxalite in the state did not take the political route, as he wanted to be a ‘revolutionary’. He joined the Naxalite movement in 1991, revived it in 1996 and gave a call for a full-fledged armed struggle against the establishment. He formed the Kui Lewang Sangha (Kui Youth Association), which became a front organisation for the Andhra Pradesh-based People’s War Group (PWG). Next, he formed the Peoples Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA).

The Naxal violence started in Orissa in 2001 when PWG formed Andhra Orissa Border Special Zone Committee with Panda as its chief for Orissa. Later, he was appointed as secretary of Basdhara Division, functioning in the northern and central districts of Orissa.

Panda scripted a sensational attack wherein over 80 armed Naxalites attacked a sub-jail and a police station in R Udayagiri town of Gajapati district on March 24, 2006. The rebels freed the prisoners, killed two policemen, and took hostage officer-in-charge of the local police station, Ranjan Kumar Mallick, and jailor Rabinarayan Sethi before releasing them a few days later.

Naxals, police exchange fire

Gondia (Maharashtra), Oct 06: An exchange of fire took place between a group of Naxals and police near Gondia on Monday, police sources said.

The gun battle started early this morning when a group of 20 Naxals fired on a police search party. The exchange of fire lasted for about half an hour after which the extremists managed to escape in the nearby forests, they said.

There was no report of any injury from both sides.

A 303 rifle, one live bullet and Naxal literature among other things were recovered from the encounter site.

Bureau Report


Naxals in Chhattisgarh interfering in life of tribals: NHRC

6 Oct 2008, 1340 hrs IST,PTI

NEW DELHI: Naxalites in Chhattisgarh are interfering in the day-to-day life of tribal forcing them to support the movement, indulge in human trafficking and enroll minors in their organisation, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has said.

The Commission said the right to life of tribal is being "practically enjoyed" only at the mercy of naxalites and anyone who tries to raise a voice against their "tyrannical" ways were "killed or maimed".

"The naxalites interfere in the day-to-day life of the tribal - in family matters, education, marriages, religious beliefs etc. They force tribal to give one boy or girl from each family to become 'sangham' member," it said.

These are among the findings of a three-member NHRC inquiry committee which investigated a complaint against Salwa Judum, an anti-naxal programme in Chhattisgarh.

It said naxals were "indulging" in human trafficking and forced labour by compelling villagers to send one young member from each family, either boy or girl, to become members of their organisational units called 'sangham' or 'dalam'.

"In addition, it is also well known that the naxals use minors in one of their oraganisations called Bal Sangham," the report said.

It said many villagers told the inquiry panel that naxalites always "discouraged" education beyond Class V and "forced" the villagers to send their children to 'Bal Sangham' besides destroying school buildings.

On the rights violation of Salwa Judum, the report said there have been instances where Salwa Judum activists, Special Police Officers and security forces have also been involved in excesses.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Advani, Singhal, Togadia natural target of Maoists?

5 Oct, 2008, 1834 hrs IST, PTI

BHUBANESWAR: Branding Sangh Parivar as a 'fundamentalist' grouping, Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda has said senior BJP leader L K Advani and VHP's AsMore Pictures
hok Singal and Pravin Togadia are "natural targets" of the Left wing extremists as they are instigating communal passion.

Panda alias Sunil, who met a group of journalists at an undisclosed place in the state yesterday, said Maoists were in search of an opportunity to eliminate the three leaders "as they are instigating communal passion in the country".

A transcript of the press conference was made available to PTI today.

"We will kill the trio whenever a chance is available," Panda who was declared as 'most wanted by Orissa Police said.

"These leaders always come to meet the people under the protection of CRPF jawans. Therefore, we could not kill them till now," Panda, who is the secretary of the state organising committee of CPI (Maoist), said.

Admitting that the Maoists had for the first time intervened in any religious dispute by killing Laxamananda Saraswati, Panda said they wanted to create a casteless society devoid of exploitation where the people would not face discrimination of any kind.

Asked whether Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik was also in the hit-list of Maoists, Panda said: "No.

"It is a fact that we are angry with Patnaik for running the government in Orissa at the instruction of BJP leaders. But he is not in our target."

The Maoist leader asked Patnaik to work for the people instead of appeasing BJP leaders.

Airtel Mobile tower attacked by Maoists again

Gaya, Oct 5: Naxalites blasted the control room of a mobile phone tower at Devaniya village in Gaya , police said today. “More than 40 armed Maoists late last night blasted the control room of the mobile tower and set fire to the security guard's room and generator set of the private cellular phone service provider Airtel, apparently to block clues of their movements,” Officer-in-Charge of Barachatti police station, Shashi Bhushan Sharma said.

'Existence of Salwa Judum necessary'

6 Oct 2008, 0232 hrs IST, Akshaya Mukul,TNN

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court-appointed NHRC investigation into Salwa Judum has justified government-sponsored arming of civilians by calling it a
"spontaneous revolt of the tribals against years of atrocities and harassment suffered by them at the hands of Naxalites".

The 118-page report, submitted to SC, also dismisses most of the allegations of human rights abuses made by the petitioners in the apex court, including widely reported use of minors by Salwa Judum. Instead, the report is harsh on Naxalites for human rights abuses and sees action by Salwa Judum activists from the prism of necessary retaliation.

Only at a few places NHRC blames Salwa Judum for excesses like looting and burning of houses or makes note of the fact that many who joined did not come willingly. The report also points out that police cases were not filed against excesses by both Salwa Judum and Naxalites. But the running thread in the report is critical of Naxalites and blames them for everything.

As an afterthought, the last paragraph of the report suddenly wakes up to the fact that socio-economic deprivation has resulted in the growth of naxalism. Therefore, it suggests "multi-pronged approach" along with security-centric solutions.

The report says that 15 years after Jan Jagran Abhiyan, an earlier attempt to deal with Naxalites, "local tribals once again mustered courage to stand up to the Naxalites, which only goes to show their sense of desperation".

NHRC's bias can be seen where the report discusses human rights abuses by Salwa Judum and Naxalites.

"Allegations levelled in the petition against Salwa Judum are prima facie true to the extent of burning of houses and looting. However, the allegations against Salwa Judum of killings are not true. During the enquiry of some specific allegations, the enquiry team also did not come across any case of rape which could be substantiated," it says.

In the next paragraph, the report discusses human rights abuses by Naxalites thus, "On the other hand, the Naxalites have not only selectively killed Salwa Judum leaders and supporters, but they are also responsible for the indiscriminate killing of many tribals and security personnel."

The NHRC team could not even find out about missing villagers and leaves the issue open by stating that "it is not clear whether they have joined the Naxalites, or are hiding in the jungles, or have moved out of Chhattisgarh, or have since been killed". Getting into specific cases of killings of tribals, as alleged by petitioners in the SC, the report says it could not find any evidence.

The NHRC enquiry team also "did not find the Salwa Judum to be involved in asserting the right to control, intimidate and punish anyone they consider to be a suspected Naxalite", the report says. "Salwa Judum is primarily restricted to relief camps being run with government support," it adds.

NHRC also did not "come across any evidence to suggest that the district administration had deliberately withdrawn any development activity or service from a village because the villagers had not supported Salwa Judum".

Admitting that "Salwa Judum movement has lost its momentum now" and was merely restricted to the 23 relief camps in the Dantewada and Bijapur districts of Chhattisgarh, the NHRC team recommended that authorities should continue to provide them adequate security cover in the camps. and, in the long run, create conditions for the safe return of all the displaced families

He gives a new home to children orphaned by Naxal violence

Rating: Posted: Oct 06, 2008 at 0003 hrs IST

Raipur, October 5 The Naxalite violence has rendered many children homeless in south Bastar in Chhattisgarh. While some have lost both parents, others were abandoned by mothers, who remarried after the deaths of their husbands.
“Being orphans from a conflict zone, these children have no option other than joining the rebels or assisting the anti-Naxal forces,” says Narayan Rao, 42, a laboratory assistant with a Government girl’s college in the state capital. “These children came to me as they didn’t want to join the Maoist cadres or the special police officers (SPOs),” he says.

Determined to improve the plight of these children, Rao has set up a safe haven for them. More than half of the 58 children, housed at his ‘Gurukul Ashram’, are from the south Bastar region where hundreds of people have lost their lives in Maoist violence, particularly since June 2005 when the conflict intensified after a group of locals launched Salwa Judum, an anti-naxalite movement to isolate the rebels.

When he began earning, Rao would spend half his salary on food, books and pencils for impoverished children. Later, when he set up the ashram to provide shelter to orphaned children, Rao split his monthly salary of Rs 12,000 into two parts, one half of which goes to his family — his wife and two children — and the other to the ashram. “Initially, my wife Hemlata used to resist. Now she also looks after and teaches the children,” says Rao.

CRPF seizes over 7,000 kg explosives this year

New Delhi (PTI): The CRPF in its operation across 18 states of the country this year has seized over 7,000 kg of explosives with the highest being reported from naxal infested states, according to the latest statistics released by the Home Ministry.

According to the report, while over 6,000 kg of explosive was recovered in Bihar this year, 893.5 kg was recovered from Jharkhand. Both states, which occupy top two positions in the list of states from where explosive seizures were made, have heavy naxal presence.

In the militancy torn state of Jammu and Kashmir, the largest paramilitary force in the world, has recovered explosive to the tune of 186.5 kg.

Incidentally, the force has received the maximum losses in naxal infested states put together than in rest of the country.

Of the total 49 casualties reported by the force, 37 were reported from Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh.

But, with regard to the maximum kills generated by the force, Jammu and Kashmir tops the list with 80 militants killed, followed by Jharkhand (30), Assam (20) and Chhattisgarh (17).

The highest number of personnel injured was in Jammu and Kashmir at 699, which officials said was a result of the violence over the Amarnath land row.

The force took part in 62 shootouts in Chhattisgarh followed by 48 in Jammu and Kashmir and 44 in Jharkhand among others taking the total to 189.

While CRPF recovered 57,460 ammunitions and 1557 arms from across the country, it lost 1143 and 18 of the same.

Chhattisgarh rapped for letting Naxals hold over Bastar

New Delhi, Oct 5 (PTI) The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has rapped the Chhattisgarh government in the wake of Naxalites establishing a stronghold over the Bastar region, which has witnessed violence in the past few years.
In a report highlighting the human rights scene in the state in the backdrop of growing Naxal violence, the NHRC said, "The state cannot escape the responsibility for the Naxalites establishing a stronghold in the Bastar region." The report noted that the government cannot be said to have sponsored 'Salwa Judum', a "people's movement" against Naxalism but it had certainly "extended support" to it by way of providing security to the processions and meetings.

The 118-page report came after extensive investigations into a complaint by an NGO on the "illegal activities" of Salwa Judum.

It said selective killings by Naxals of Salwa Judum activists and the attacks on their rallies were responsible for changing the complexion of the movement from a "non-violent one to an armed resistance".

"During the enquiry, the team did not come across any complaints of Salwa Judum carrying out illegal checking of vehicles, levying illegal taxes on occupants of vehicles and indulging in looting its occupants when they refuse to pay illegal taxes," the report said.

The Commission said the allegation that Naxal violence increased after Salwa Judum was a "very narrow view".

On the displacement of tribals from the Bastar region, the report said Salwa Judum cannot be held solely responsible for it. "Moreover, the state government cannot be said to have deliberately or actively pursued a policy of displacement. These displacements are fallouts of the decision of some of the tribals to take on Naxals," it