Friday, December 05, 2008

Maoist call for a bandh from today

Express News Service

First Published : 05 Dec 2008 07:53:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 05 Dec 2008 01:00:12 PM IST
RAYAGADA: The CPI (Maoist) Bansadhara Divisional Committee has called for a bandh on December 5 and 6 in Rayagada, Gajapati and Khandhamal districts to protest the killing of one and injuring another in a firing by the SOG and CRPF personnel in Gajapati district.

In a letter written in Oriya and signed by Bansadhara Divisional Committee secretary Ajad, they have alleged that the SOG and CRPF killed one and injured another in Kuttliganda village under Panigonda panchayat under Adaba police limits of Gajapati district on November 23 during combing operation.

The two were innocent adivasis in search of lost cows, the letter said. They also demanded a compensation of Rs 10 lakh for the dead and Rs 5 lakh for the injured.

The deceased has been identified as Junnesu Raita and the injured is Bodo Raita. Four cows also died during the operation.

'Steps to upgrade security preparedness'

Express News Service

First Published : 05 Dec 2008 07:41:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 05 Dec 2008 01:46:16 PM IS

TBHUBANESWAR: Under fire for the increased activities of the Naxalites in the State who have even reached the outskirts of the capital city, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced that steps are being taken to upgrade the security preparedness of the forces and make them more effective.

Replying to the debate on the Home Department Supplementary Budget in the Assembly, the Chief Minister said that 2,100 tribal youths are being appointed as special police officers (SPOs) in the Naxalite-affected districts by relaxing educational and physical standards.

Naveen said that in order to attract ex-servicemen for contractual appointment for anti-Naxalite operations, their remuneration package has been substantially raised. The State Government has appointed an ex-army officer of the rank of Brigadier as the training advisor for the State police, he said, adding that 124 ex-servicemen had already been appointed.

The Chief Minister said that fortification of 142 police stations and 41 armouries have already started. A decision was taken to fortify 115 urban and 305 rural police stations in phases after the Nayagarh attack of Naxalites in February this year.

The State Government has created 878 additional posts for special operation group (SOG), a force raised for anti-Naxalite operations. Besides, decision has been taken to locate one ‘COBRA’ battalion of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) in Koraput district for anti-Naxalite operations, he said.

He said that newly recruited constables of the second and third India Reserve Battalions (IRBs) have been sent to six BSF training institutes for training.

One batch of trainees each has completed training in anti-extremist training units at Malkangiri and Rourkela.

Training for a fresh batch of newly recruited personnel will commence soon in the SOG training institute at Chandaka.

A massive recruitment drive has been undertaken to fill up 2,075 vacancies of constables in civil police and 541 sepoys in Orissa State Armed Police (OSAP) battalions. Orissa Staff Selection Commission (OSSC) has been moved for immediate recruitment of 319 sub-inspectors, 35 sergeants and 160 deputy subedars which constitute the leadership positions at the cutting edge level of the police force.

Maoist posters leave cops in a tizzy

First Published : 05 Dec 2008 07:48:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 05 Dec 2008 01:12:37 PM IST

BHUBANESWAR: Campaign materials purportedly of the Maoists found in Jaydev Vihar area of the city has left the commissionerate police in a tizzy. Today’s developments along with posters found in Rental Colony and VIP Area of the City a couple of days back have given credence to the possibilities of the Naxalites entering the capital city.

Unidentified youths had came on bikes and left the posters in the two contiguous residential areas on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the secretary of the Orissa State Organising Committee of CPI (Maoist) in a statement released here asserted that the posters found in the capital city were distributed by the party.

Meanwhile, combing operations by the police on the ourskirts of the city continued without any success. However, the Government was silent on the issue. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik ignored the matter while replying to the debate on the supplementary budget.

Maoist rebels kill 5 police officers in east India

4 hours ago

PATNA, India (AP) — Suspected Maoist rebels killed five police officers Friday in an ambush in eastern India, officials said.

The police were returning after a routine patrol to Ranchi, the state capital of Jharkhand, when suspected Maoist rebels sprayed their vehicle with gunfire, said local police official S.N. Pradhan. The rebels killed all five police officers and stole their weapons.

The attack occurred near Tamar, a town 30 miles (50 kilometers) south of Ranchi, where Maoists have a strong presence.

The rebels, who say they are inspired by Chinese revolutionary leader Mao Zedong, have been fighting for more than three decades in several Indian states, demanding land and jobs for agricultural laborers and the poor.

Called Naxalites after Naxalbari, a village in West Bengal state where the movement was born in 1967, the rebels have frequently targeted police and government officials, charging authorities with plundering the region's rich natural resources with little benefit to local residents.

More than 6,000 people have been killed in the insurgency

Orissa Police banks on modernisation to combat Maoists

By Dipti Ranjan Kanungo
Last updated: 12/05/2008 00:03:50

Bhubaneswar(Orissa): In the wake of increasing Maoist activities in the State, the Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced in the house that steps are being taken to upgrade the security preparedness of the forces and make them more effective.

Replying to the debate on the home department supplementary Budget in the assembly on Thursday , the Chief minister said that 2,100 tribal youths are being appointed as special police officer(SPOs) in the Maoist-affected districts by relaxing educational and physical standards.

Chief minister further said that in order to attract ex-servicemen for contractual appointment in anti- Maoist operations, their remuneration package has been substantially raised .

The State government has appointed an- ex army officer of Brigadier Rank as the training advisor for the state police adding as many as 124 ex-servicemen have already been appointed.

The Chief Minister said that fortification of 142 police stations and 41 armouries had already started. A decision was taken to fortify 115 urban and 305 rural police stations in phases after the Nayagarh attack in February this year.

The State Government has also created 878 additional posts for Special Operation Group (SOG), a force raised for anti-Maoist operations. Besides decision has also been taken to station one “COBRA” BATALION OF Central Reserve Police Force. (CRPF) in Koraput district for anti-Maoist operation, he said.

He said that newly recruited constables of second and third India Reserve Battalion (IRB) have been sent to six BSF training institutes for training units at Malkangiri and Rourkela.

Training for the fresh batch of newly recruited personnel will commence soon in the SOG training institute at Chandaka. A massive recruitment drive has also been launched to fill up 2,075 Constable posts in civil police and 541 Sepoy in Orissa State Armed Police (OSAP) battalions.

Orissa Staff Selection Commission has been moved for immediate recruitment of 319 sub-inspectors,35 sergeants and 160 deputy subedars which constitute the leadership positions at the cutting edge level of the police force.

COBRA battalion to be in Koraput to fight Maoists

Kalinga Times Correspondent

Bhubaneswar, Dec 4: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has said that a Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (COBRA) battalion of the Central Reserve Police Force will be located in Koraput district for anti-naxalite operations.

The state government was in the process of alienating land for establishment of the battalion, Patnaik said while making a statement in connection with the discussion on demand for supplementary grants of Home Department in the state Assembly on Thursday evening.

The Central government had recently announced to raise 10 COBRA battalions during next three years to tackle the growing Maoist threat in different parts of the country. Each COBRA battalion will have around 1000 specially trained personnel.

The Chief Minister, who focussed his statement mainly on strengthening of the police in the state, said that operational control rooms were being set up in Special Operation Group and naxalite affected districts for proper planning and execution of anti-naxalite operations.

The government, Patnaik said, had decided to fortify 115 urban police stations and 305 rural police stations in a phased manner. Out of the above, 142 police station (26 urban police stations and 116 rural police stations) and 42 armouries (33 district armoury and 8 battalion armoury) have already been covered under the fortification scheme, he added.

“Of out the five India Reserve Battalions sanctioned for the state, one is fully functional, two more battalions have been raised and are under training and recruitment for the remaining two battalions is going on,” Patnaik said.

As many as 2100 tribal youth were being appointed as Special Police Officers in the naxal affected districts of Malkangiri, Koraput, Rayagada, Gajapati and Kandhamal by relaxing educational and physical standards, and the recruitment process was underway, Patnaik said.

He also said that a massive recruitment drive had been undertaken to fill up vacancies in the civil police, Odisha State Armed Police, Special Operation and India Reserve Battalions to strengthen the police force. The arms and ammunitions of the state police were also being upgraded, he said.

The Opposition MLAs who had earlier criticised the government for its alleged failure to establish the rule of law in the state, however, were not pleased with Patnaik's statement on the issues raised by them during discussion on the issue. They staged a walkout.

Bengaluru Habba put off for security reasons

BS Reporter / Chennai/ Bangalore December 05, 2008, 0:35 IST

Bengaluru Habba, the 20-day cultural extravaganza, has been put off due to security reasons. The government has also decided not to give permission for any events wherein there is a public gathering, like seminars and exhibitions.

Briefing reporters after the cabinet meeting, Karnataka Rural Development and Panchayatraj Minister Shobha Karandlaje, “Keeping security of the people in mind, the cabinet has decided to postpone Bangalore Habba and also not to hold public events for a month.”

The cabinet has cleared setting up of rapid action force (RAF) in the four revenue divisions in the state and has also cleared recruitment of 750 police personnel.

Till the National Security Group (NSG) unit is set up in the state, the cabinet has approved a decision mooted by the state police to bring anti-terror squad (ATS), coastal security patrol CSP), Left-wing anti-terror squad (to fight naxals) and state intelligence bureau under one command headed by an Additional Director General of Police (ADG).

The cabinet has also approved recruitments for the India Reserve Battalion (IRB) and Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP). The state police department had sought approval for recruiting over 700 constables to the India Reserve Battalion (IRB), headquartered in Munirabad in Koppal district.

In addition to 11 units of KSRP and one unit of IRB at Munirabad, the state police plans to create three more units of IRB to be based in Davanagere, Bijapur and Tumkur.

“To set up more IRBs, a budget of Rs 17 crore is required. The central government has promised Rs 12.75 crore and the balance is being contributed by the state government by way of land cost and construction of buildings,” Karandlaje.

In order to modernise the police force, cabinet also gave approval to police department to buy 500 vehicles fitted with global positioning systems (GPS) to be deployed in the state mainly naxal infected areas. Another 100 vehicles is being deployed only for Bangalore city and they will supplement the existing Hoysala patrol vehicles.

Karnataka unveils new mining policy

By Team Mangalorean Bangalore

BANGALORE December 4, 2008: The Karnataka government today unveiled its new mining policy aimed at banning export of iron ore and encourage value addition of the product, keeping in view the domestic market, under which it will demarcate mining zones and grant concession.

Transparency will be followed while allotting mining rights and priority accorded to those establishing the industry in the vicinity of mining pits, State Panchayat Raj Minister Shobha Karandjale told reporters after a cabinet meeting here.

Issuance of any new licenses will be “pre-conditioned to value addition in the state without destabilising the state's forest wealth and bio-diversity,'' she said.
Existing licence holders would be permitted to continue to sell and export. However, during time of renewal the licence would be reviewed, she said. Modern technology would have to be utilised by those engaging in mining activities. No mining concessions would be permitted in environmentally sensitive zones, she added.

The new policy has 13 objectives including progressive features such as adoption of modern techniques in mining, transparency in granting mineral licenses and emphasis on value addition. No new licenses would be granted to export mineral without value addition. Ruling out renewal of existing licenses for exports, Shobha Karandlaje said.

Karnataka has the distinction of being one among very few states in the country to formulate mineral policy in 2000. Recently, the Karnataka High Court suggested nationalisation of iron ore mining, besides banning mining in forestland.
The State has exported 47 million tonnes of iron from Bellary, Bagalkot and Gulbarga districts, she said.

The policy aimed to protect the flora, fauna and bio-diversity and ensure that the invaluable forest wealth was safeguarded while granting mineral concessions. "Mining as a stand-alone industry needs to be encouraged as it provides large scale employment. It creates value by converting resources into a product."

The policy allowed setting up of new mineral based industries to match the available raw materials, it said the industries would generate more employment and spawn auxiliary industries. Compliance of environment laws by miners would be enforced through the Department of Forests, Ecology and Environment, the policy said.

The priority would be given to the applicants who propose establishment of industries for value addition within the vicinity of the mineral bearing areas. To ensure better quality of life for mine workers and their families, adherence to minimum wages and other statutory requirements as per the law will be enforced. Townships nearer to the workplace would be developed with health, educational, recreational and other facilities. A portion of revenue generated from mining would be used for development of mining areas and districts, the policy said.

The Minister said the government would explore the possibility of notifying mineral bearing areas to avoid clash of interest between mineral exploitation and other development activities. It would promote indigeneous utilisation of iron ore fines and beneficiation of low grade ores.

Maoist Courier , Dr.Sen's bail rejected

Chhattisgarh HC: PUCL vice president's bail plea rejected

The Chhattisgarh High Court has rejected bail plea of People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) National Vice-President Vinayak Sen, who has been arrested on a charge of aiding naxalites.

Justice Sunil Sinha rejected the bail plea of Dr Sen and West Bengal’s Piyush Guha yesterday.

Dr Sen was arrested from Bilaspur and Piyush Guha on May 14, 2007 under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Chhattisgarh Special Public Security Act, 2006, for their alleged links with Maoists.

Dr Sen was charged with delivering messages of jailed naxal leader Nayaran Sanyal to Piyush Guha. The hearing in the case against them was going on in Raipur district court.

Earlier, Dr Sen and Piyush Guha had submitted a bail plea in 2007 but was rejected by the High Court on July 23, 2007. Later, the Supreme Court rejected the bail plea on December 10, 2007.


Anti-naxal operations on in Dharmapuri district

Dharmapuri, TN (PTI): A combing operation-cum-awareness campaign against naxalites was conducted in the Marandahalli forest, 52 km from Dharmapuri, by the police on Friday.

District Superintendent of Police Najmul Hoda said the operation, in which the Special Task Force, Q Branch and local police personnel participated, was aimed at creating awareness among the people of about extremists.

The panchayat chiefs of Belrampatti, Thumbalahalli, Keseakulhalla and Makkanamkombai and surrounding tribal population had been asked to inform the police about movement of any strangers in the area.

Police sources said no naxals were sighted during the combing operation.

Meanwhile, tight security had been made in the district to prevent any untoward incident tomorrow, the anniversary of the Babri masjid demolition.

A team of bomb disposal squad was conducting random checks with the help of sniffer dogs, police said.

Naxals regrouping, cops tighten security

Express News Service
First Published : 05 Dec 2008 07:56:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 05 Dec 2008 12:53:44 PM IST

SAMBALPUR: The Sambalpur police, it looks like, is reworking on its priorities and strategies with the Naxals observing functions -- like the Maoists Saheed Week followed by the ongoing PLGA Week -- to get-together.

The Naxals who returned home in Jharkhand to indulge in farming activities, after suffering a setback, are now believed to be back to regroup and rebuild their base.

In fact, it has been a practice with the Naxals to return to their villages with the onset of monsoon as it becomes difficult to take shelter in the forest and come back only after the harvest season.

With the harvesting almost nearing an end, the police aware of their strategy, have intensified their surveillance in the pockets visited by them and routes through which they move.

With the PLGA Week going till December 9, the police are on high alert and had adopted both offensive and defensive strategies to counter any insurgent attack. Security of armoury and anti-Naxal police point had been strengthened, a coordination meeting with the CRPF has been held to thwart any attempt by the Naxals to damage life and property.

Admitting that the police have been put on alert due to PLGA Week, Sambalpur SP Sanjay Kumar said thrust is being laid on safe movement of vehicular and rail traffic as Naxals in the past have tried to disrupt them. He said besides intensifying long and short range patrolling, ambush has been laid at many places and road blocks (Naka) have been set up to check vehicles passing through the national highways 6, 42, 200 and State Highway 10 which pass through the region.

Intelligence and information are also being shared with police of Naxal-infested Sundargarh, Rourkela, Deogarh and Keonjhar police apart from Jharkhand Police to keep a tab on the movement of Naxals.

State to have ISD on the lines of NSG

Express News Service First Published : 05 Dec 2008 04:07:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 05 Dec 2008 12:25:28 PM ISTBANGALORE: In the backdrop of growing terror threat on the state, the state government has decided to raise an internal security division on the lines of National Security Guards (NSG).

The state Cabinet which met here on Thursday approved the raising of internal security division under an officer of the rank of ADGP.

“About 750 personnel would be selected and be given commando training,” Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister Shobha Karandlaje told reporters.

These trained men will be deployed in equal numbers to Anti-Terrorism Squad, Coastal Security Police, Anti-Left Wing Terrorism and State Intelligence Stream, she added.

The Cabinet stamped its approval for purchase of 500 vehicles with GPS facility for police operating in naxal affected districts. Besides, 100 vehicles would be provided for Hoysala.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Maoists fuelling tribal agitation in West Midnapore: Buddhadeb

Kolkata, Dec 4 (PTI) Maoists were behind the tribal agitation at Lalgarh which has remained blockaded and cutoff from the rest of West Bengal since last month, Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said today.
Buddhadeb said the November two landmine blast, which he and union ministers Ram Vilas Paswan and Jitindra Prasada escaped narrowly, was triggered by maoists.

Those behind the blast was Lalgarh squad of Maoists led by Sasadhar Mahato, allegedly brother of a Trinamool Congress leader, the Chief Minister told the state Assembly.

He said one maoist squad was at Lalgarh which was joined by two to three others from Jharkhand. Maoist leaders were also camping at Dalilpur in West Midnapore.

Stating that maoists were behind the ongoing agitation and blockade at Lalgarh block, he said that it had resulted into price rise, shortage of kerosene oil and suffering of the students.

The administration wanted talks and was being patient, Buddhadeb said, but the venue could not be decided by the agitators as demanded by them.

The chief minister, however, said police action was not the only way to counter maoists, who had to be isolated from the tribal population.

The state government, he said, would also not ban maoists as demanded by the Trinamool Congress. PTI

Maoist lull since Balimela tragedy has cops on edge

VKL GayatriFirst Published : 03 Dec 2008 08:34:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 03 Dec 2008 01:08:53 PM IST

VISAKHAPATNAM: If once it was the rampaging of the Maoists that had the cops on edge, it is now their silence -- especially the long lull since the offensive, that is proving ominous.

The police have definite inputs pointing to a major action, this time targeting a high-level politician. Accordingly, security for politicos is being tightened.

The task, however, is pretty stiff given that morale in the force is not very high since the Balimela tragedy in which the radicals killed 33 policemen.

The Maoists, sources said, have suspended recruitment of tribal boys and girls and are concentrating on preparing for ‘‘action’’. Five action teams have been constituted for this purpose in the three north coastal districts of Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram and Srikakulam.

A group of Maoists is said to be recceing different places in these districts.

The police believe the Maoists are targeting one cabinet rank minister, three MLAs and two inspectors of police, and maintain that recently they had planned to attack a police station but changed their mind for unknown reasons.

Two central committee leaders had visited Visakhapatnam agency area in mid-November to discuss the problems of the cadre and had assured the latter of modern weaponry. A senior police official said that of late gleaning information on Maoist moves had been rendered difficult police as locals and tribals were not ‘‘co-operating’’ with them for fear of the consequence of acting as informers.

SOG, state police search for Maoists

Statesman News Service

BHUBANESWAR, Dec 3: The Special Operations Group (SOG) and state armed police carried out combing operations in Chandaka forest areas on the outskirts of the state capital today following reports of suspected Maoist movement in the area.
Apparently there was no intelligence input as yet and it was all based on people of a slum saying that they had seen a few strangers moving suspiciously in the area late last night.

"The combing operations are on and it will continue," said a senior police officer. He did reveal that they were acting upon information provided by villagers.
"Some of the villagers said that they had come across strangers carrying arms and sporting black outfits," informed the police officer."The combing operations in the forest area have not revealed anything as yet," he added.

The city police has been put on alert and police stations in the periphery areas of the state capital stand reinforced.

It is pertinent to note that Chandaka forest areas are contiguous to the corridor of Nayagarh, Daspalla forests extending further to jungles of Kandhamal and Gajapati districts which are known strongholds of Maoists.

The Nayagarh district armoury attack last February was the first shocking incident showing how the Maoist had made deep inroads in the state and had reached close to the state capital.
More recently, the state capital had another jolt when on 1 December Maoists posters were found. The posters had warned people against joining or supporting communal forces. Revolutionaries will punish all those who join or support communal elements, it had stated.

Make us partner in security apparatus, say private agencies

New Delhi (PTI): Claiming that the country faces extreme shortage of police personnel which led to security lapses, the association of private security agencies has demanded a new safety apparatus involving private agencies.

"We want our government to take Private Security Industry as partner and create a sound working mechanism engineered by its specialist Intelligence Agencies," chairman of the Central Association of Private Security Industry (CAPSI), Kumar Vikram Singh, said.

He said the changing terror scene specially the audacious attacks carried out by terrorists recently has stressed the need to take services of the huge number of people in the private security agencies.

Singh claimed that Chattisgarh and Jharkhand, two of the worst Naxal-hit states, have the maximum vacancies in their police forces.

Highlighting the strength of the private security agencies, he said for every one government security official, the agencies have five people.

"We are now looking ahead to get approval for private security personnel to carry firearm on duty," he said.

On the welfare plans of the private personnel, Singh said there will be a sea change in the system. Plans to provide facilities like Provident Fund, Gratuity, proper training and give them two-room houses are in the offing, he said.

The CAPSI claims that it has nearly 55-lakh people working under it all over the country. "We generate one million jobs each year, basically involving the youth from the rural areas who otherwise remain jobless and and turn into notorious criminals," Singh said.

CAPSI also plans to introduce a course on security management with the IGNOU.

Orissa to provide special training to fight Maoists

Bombay News.Net
Thursday 4th December, 2008 (IANS)

Aiming to curb increasing Naxal violence in Orissa, the government here plans to provide specialised training to policemen, an official said Thursday.

The cops will undergo three months rigorous training, particularly in jungle warfare and learn to fight extremists. The training will be provided in a special operations group centre at Chandaka on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar.

Confirming this, state Director General of Police Manmohan Praharaj told IANS: 'It is almost decided.'

Maoist rebels have a strong presence in at least five of the state's 30 districts.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Two Maoists arrested in Karimnagar

Karimnagar (AP) (PTI): Two Maoists have been arrested at Huzurabad in Karimnagar district of Andhra Pradesh, police said on Wednesday.

K Indrasen (38) and S Ravinder (35) were arrested during a routine vehicle checking at Huzurabad town on Tuesday when they were found moving suspiciously, Huzurabad Deputy Superintendent of Police Y Nageswara Rao told reporters.

The duo, residents of different villages in the district, gave shelter to Maoists and were instrumental in handing over extortion money of Rs 5.90 lakh to the ultras.

Also, both had visited Chhattisgarh to meet senior Maoist leaders, Rao said.

Two 'tiffin box bombs' and gelatin sticks were seized from their possession, he said.

Indrasen and Ravinder have been booked under the Explosives Act and A.P Public Security Act, he added.

Officials held hostage in Lalgarh

4 Dec 2008, 0238 hrs IST, TNN

JHARGRAM/KOLKATA: The Lalgargh crisis deepened on Wednesday when Maoist-led tribals kidnapped two top West Midnapore district officials and held
them hostage in forests, just 5 km from Jhargram town. This comes only a day after the Left Front won the Jhargram municipal polls.

The tribals arm-twisted the administration into freeing four agitators detained by police earlier in the day before they released the officials in exchange.

The standoff began in the afternoon after police rounded up four Adivasis trying to block the state highway at Kalabani, between Lodhasuli and Jhargram. In retaliation, members of the Maoist-led Committee Against Police Atrocities started felling trees to block the highway. When SDO Tanmoy Chakrabarty and SDPO Arnab Biswas reached the spot to clear the blockade (under instructions from DM N S Nigam), some agitators provoked them to the wayside, where they were surrounded by men with bows and arrows.

A huge police force was sent to Kalabani in the evening to rescue the two officers, but they decided not to provoke a confrontation with the armed tribals. It was after additional DM (general) Raja Aron Israel intervened that the hostages were freed in exch-ange for the four detained Adivasis.

The incident is enough indication of the simmering tension in Jangalkhand. Soon after winning the tribal wards in Jhargram town, the local CPM became proactive, leading to a confrontation between Left-backed traders and the motorbike brigade of Chhatra Kurmi Sangram Committee that was trying to enforce its bandh call in the morning. Traders bashed up some bandh supporters. Emboldened, the administration decided to take on the tribals in their jungle turf, only to land in the Maoist trap.

The move boomeranged because it is the tribals who got what they wanted. The message has reached far-flung hamlets in Jangalkhand. Upbeat with the "victory", the Committee Against Police Atrocities has cal-led a meeting in Narcha village near Lalgarh on Thursday, spokesperson Chhatradhar Mahato said, hinting they would step up the ante against the government after the meeting.

The situation might reach a flashpoint any day, but it's a situation that chief minister Buddhadeb Bhatta-charjee is desperately trying to avoid. The tension is palpable, as CPM's youth wing DYFI is organizing a public gathering at Chandrakona in West Midnapore. CPM minister Susanta Ghosh, who is on the Maoist hit list, will address the meeting.

Annoyed with Wednesday's fracas, the CM wants to go slow on the Lalgarh front. He is sympathetic to the Adivasi cause. "The situation in Lalgarh is serious. Most tribals are innocent. A few are masterminding the trouble, but what will they gain by felling trees and digging up roads?" Bhattacharjee said on Wednesday.

Prodded by the chief minister, home secretary Asok Mohan Chakrabarti met the DMs of West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia to chalk out ways to improve the living conditions in Jangalkhand.

To pacify the tribals, the government plans to lay out a huge bounty in the form of employment, scholarships, pension for the aged and other development projects.

A token amount from the CM's relief fund would be released for use in the area, possibly for drinking water facilities. The home secretary has already directed backward classes welfare secretary R D Meena to conduct a probe into the complaints of torture in Lalgarh.

NSG-like City Guards to be raised soon

Express New Service First Published : 03 Dec 2008 08:48:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 03 Dec 2008 12:37:09 PM IS

THYDERABAD: To tackle urban terror, the city police will soon be raising an elite force on the lines of the National Security Guards (NSG). Termed as City Guards, this anti-terror force is all set to be trained on the lines of the NSG.

The City Guards would be a nearly 150-member strike force trained in anti-terror operations and equipped with state-of-the-art machinery and equipment. ‘’The recent Mumbai experience clearly shows that it is not easy for the civil police with normal preparedness to tackle terror attacks. Such operations would require specialised commandos,’’ City Police Commissioner B Prasada Rao said. A proposal to raise the City Guards had been sent to the Government and it is likely that a Government Order will be issued soon. ``The strike force is likely to come into existence in the next two-three months,’’ the commissioner said.

Efficient personnel from the City Armed Reserve (CAR) would be drawn into the City Guards. They would be imparted specialised training in handling weapons and given more allowances,’’ Prasada Rao said.

Meanwhile, two Greyhounds units comprising 35 members each have been given to the city and the Cyberabad police to counter any possible terror attack.

Though the anti-naxalite Greyhounds force was trained in jungle warfare, it lacks the competence to tackle urban terror though it has got commando training. ``These Greyhounds would be sent to the NSG training unit at Manesar in Delhi for orientation towards urban terrorism,’’ Prasada Rao said.

The City Guards would be trained by the Greyhounds at their Premavatipet and Gandipet units. The commissioner also said there was a proposal to post NSG units in important cities to meet emergencies.

Prasada Rao said procuring modern weapons and machinery for the proposed force would not be any problem as there were adequate budgetary sanctions.

Suspected Maoists appear in Bhubaneswar city

Kalinga Times Correspondent

Bhubaneswar, Dec 3: A group of suspected Maoists were seen by locals in Behera Sahi locality adjacent to Rental Colony in the city on Tuesday night.

The suspected extremists who were wearing masks and jackets went inside the Chandaka forest near Bharatpur when some local youths asked them about their identity from a distance.

Senior police officials, accompanied by a large number of security personnel, reached the spot after people informed police about the presence of thee suspected Left wing extremists.

The suspected Maoists, numbering about 10, appeared around 10-30 pm, according to locals.

Patrolling has been intensified in Chandaka area to ascertain whether the group comprised Maoists.

The issue was likely to figure in the state Assembly which was in session.

The emergence of the suspected Maoists has created panic among the people living close to the Chandaka forest as Maoist posters were found plastered on public walls on Sunday.

The city police had seized some posters and registered a case.

aoists are observing the People's Guerrilla Liberation Army Week in the naxalite-infested district of southern Odisha since Tuesday morning.

Explosives for mining diverted to naxalites in UP: sources

Abhinav Pandey
Lucknow, Dec 3 (PTI) The explosives meant for mining activities in Uttar Pradesh are being possibly diverted to naxalites to carry out strikes in the other states, home department sources said here.

"A large number of recoveries of explosives from the naxal-infested districts of Chandauli, Mirzapur and Sonbhadra and other parts of the state have revealed that the naxalites are exploiting their links with the people involved in mining activities to carry out strikes in other states," a senior home department official told PTI.

"Recovery of explosives and interrogation of those arrested in this connection corroborate the practice," he said.

Citing official figures of the police department, he said this year till November, 34,348 detonators, 3,226 electric detonators, 700 kgs explosive, 43 gelatin rods, 1,883 safety fuses, 32.76 tonnes ammonium nitrate and 200 explosive rods were recovered from different parts of the state.

Interestingly, most of the recoveries are from Chandauli, Mirzapur and Sonebhadra districts, which are naxal-infested and also known for mining activities.

While 30,000 detonators and 3,100 electric detonators were recovered from Chandauli alone, over 32 tonnes ammonium nitrate, 54 detonators and 20 electronic detonators were recovered from Sonebhadra, he said, adding that in Mirzapur 2.6 quintal ammonium nitrate, 1,373 detonators, 100 electric detonators were recovered this year.

Besides these districts, recoveries were also made from Allahabad, Bahraich, Mahoba, Mugalsarai and Balrampur. PTI

Praja Pratighatana group naxal killed

Staff Reporter

Encounter in Gangaram forest area in Kothaguda mandal

– Photo: M. Murali

Plan foiled: Superintendent of Police V.C. Sajjanar inspecting the false roof of the vehicle in which weapons were being transported in Gangaram forest on Wednesday.

WARANGAL: One naxal belonging to Praja Pratighatana group was killed in an encounter in Gangaram forest area in Kothaguda mandal in the wee hours of Wednesday.

According to the police, the special parties were checking the vehicles on Khammam border on the eve of PPG anniversary celebrations. The police tried to stop an ambassador car which was coming from Yellandu of Khammam district but the driver did not stop and the police began chasing it.

The driver immediately stopped the car after a while and suddenly opened fire at the police and tried to escape into the forest. When the police retaliated, the naxal was killed.

When the police checked the vehicle, they found four weapons hidden in the false roof which were supposed to be handed over to Mohannana squad of PPG.

The police recovered two 8 mm rifles, one Springfield rifle and one .30 carbine from the scene.

The deceased naxal was identified as one B. Badru alias Sanjeev of Govindaraopet mandal. Two cases were registered against him at Pasra police station.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Terror struck Mumbai responds

2 Dec 2008, 2128 hrs IST, Vasundhara Sanger, TIMESOFINDIA.COM

MUMBAI: Six days after the terror strike on Mumbai, the metropolis' numbed citizenry comprising top corporates, bankers and Bollywood actors
assembled near the state secretariat on Tuesday in a bid to impel the government to provide fool proof safety to its citizens.

A ten point action plan was signed by scores of individuals from all segments of society and the same is to be presented to the governor. Thereafter, the group plans to set out to Delhi by road on the 10th of this month, reaching the capital four days later. The group is determined to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi and present them with their demands.

"It doesn't end there. We will not keep quiet. We will go back again and again to see what action they have taken," said Aroona Bhat, one of the active members who organised the peaceful demonstration in Mumbai, on Tuesday.

"Terrorism Will Not Go Away By Wishing It, We Have To Make It Go Away By Killing It," is what the demonstrators have been screaming. Roughly the ten point programme to be presented to the government of India is:

A single federal anti-terror agency - with a significant presence in each city - rapid response and the best equipment money can buy - why was Karkare's bullet-proof (BP) jacket inferior to the NSG BP jacket in this age and time when India pays Rs 5 trillion in taxes?

Network the communication and financial data - Post-9/11 the US and UK networked their communication and financial data so that security agencies could check on their computer screens on any terror suspect - India is nowhere near that nor are we even thinking of it.

Anticipation of attacks rather than post-facto preparation - When the terrorist started hijacking planes and entering through the Indo-Pak border, post facto we enhanced checking at airports and fenced the border. So he shifted to hotels and the sea route; post facto we shall make all our hotels and sea ports and coastlines secure. When he shifts to malls and micro light aircraft, post facto we shall make malls and the air space more secure and so on...

For countering terrorism (as compared to normal policing) we need much higher number/ levels and grades of police/ intelligence infrastructure.

Intelligence operatives to population ratio in India is less than 5 per lakh in India compared to above 40 in many countries - this, despite India being beset with multiple types of terror - Islamic, Kashmiri, Hindu, Sikh, north-east and Naxals - much more than only Islamic terror threat for the west, Russia, China etc.

We need a tough anti-terror law and the judiciary to act quickly.

We kept Maulana Masood Azhar in our jails as an under trial for 6 years and released him to the Kandahar hijackers - he is the current big boss of the LeT in Pakistan. Why did the judiciary take so much time? At that time we had the strictest of laws - TADA.

In 2000, post-Kargil a Group of Ministers made a report to realign and resolve India's security infrastructure - red tape has killed it. To get over the red tape, the pm in 2005 announced the Police Mission to reform the police system - red tape killed that too.

We need to fill senior level vacancies in IB & RAW. IB and R&AW have suffered 40% vacancies in top level supervisors (IPS officers) for more than a decade now and 50% vacancies in levels of SI and Inspector!

Mumbai needs to have a directly elected mayor, who will act as the head of government for the city (and head all the local level organisations like BMC). While statehood (like Delhi) would be ideal, let's start with a directly elected mayor, like London, New York, Shanghai.

Massive investment in the training of the police, firemen and citizens with security drills, evacuation and sanitization procedures. Also provide a CCTV network across the city with a coordinated crisis management cell during emergency, colour coded alerts and a media/communication strategy. Many lives could have been saved by a faster and more professional response, such as by the fire department and the police. Training and drills must be undertaken regularly so that people know exactly what to do in an emergency- during the emergency there is no time to think and then start planning or making ad hoc decisions.

Implement national ID card project for all citizens.

Regular communication and updates - the nation needs to be informed of the progress in implanting this plan. Start with daily/weekly briefings by the home ministry on the total progress in the prior period and action taken, and action to be taken as a formal media brief. Within the next seven days a time line for communicating to the nation: who was responsible; confront with evidence and seek global alignment for action; action for attack and neutralise.

A little further down and in the vicinity of last Wednesday's terrors target the Oberoi-Trident hotel at Marine Drive, former sheriff of Mumbai, Nana Chudasma organizsed a solemn gathering where people were asked to pay homage to the slain heroes who were killed fighting the terrorists. Hundreds of grateful Mumbaikars were signing and putting their thoughts on a chain of banner, laid out on the sidewalk.

IR Battalion may come up at Kalinganagar

JAJPUR, Dec 2: "The Orissa government has plans to raise a India Reserve (IR) Battalion at the Kalinganagar industrial complex area here to tackle the industrial, rehabilitation and displacement related tension and clashes," said DGP Mr Manmohan Praharaj here while adding that there were reports of suspected Naxal activity in the region.
Addressing the 15th annual function of Jajpur Havildar and Constable Association at Panikoili, Mr Praharaj said Kalinganagar has emerged as a major industrial hub and consequential problems have recurred in the area.
Earlier, the Jajpur district administration, had been asked to identify the required land for this purpose and it has already identified 50 acres in the Kalinganagar steel hub. "Besides, the district authorities have been coordinating with other departments and agencies for handing over the required land for the IRB," the DGP said.
“Henceforth ATS training will be mandatory for all those recruited into police starting from constable to additional superintendent of police," said Mr Praharaj.
He said that the state government has decided to upgrade and modernize all the police stations in the state in a phased manner. In the first phase, Kalinganagar, Tomka, Sukinda and Kaliapani police stations have been upgraded.
"Adequate measures would be taken to improve the staff strength, boundary, barrack system and other infrastructure of these police stations," he said .
Government is in the process of constructing a 100 bed barrack for male and 50 bed barrack for women police personnel in Jajpur.
Several senior police officers including IG, Mr Santosh Upadhya, SP Mr DS Kuttey were present at the annual function. n sns

Orissa Tight security for PLGA Week

Express New Service

First Published : 02 Dec 2008 09:52:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 02 Dec 2008 03:21:57 PM IST

MALKANGIRI: With the CPI (Maoist)-sponsored People’s Liberation Guerilla Army (PLGA) Week celebration beginning tomorrow, the Maoists have appealed to the tribal youth to join PLGA and make the new democratic revolution a success.

The week-long celebration is expected to be attended by hundreds of people of the group. In the posters displayed at various Naxal-infested areas of Kalimela, MV-79, Motu, Bhejangwada and Podia, the Maoists have urged the people to form ‘people’s government’ by throwing the government out of power. The Left-Wing extremists have also appealed the youth to end the decade long exploitation by joining the PLGA. Police are on high alert in the Naxal-infested areas to avert any untoward during the celebration.

Rourkela cops tighten security

Home > States >

Express New Service First Published : 02 Dec 2008 10:03:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 02 Dec 2008 03:16:20 PM IST

ROURKELA: Five technical committee members of the banned CPI (Maoist) outfit were operating for two years from Chhend Colony and had set up a clandestine gun manufacturing unit at Pharsatoli of Kalunga here till being nabbed on January 12 last year.

The incident coupled with the growing terror activities elsewhere in the country have given ample reasons for the Rourkela District Police (RPD) to pull their socks up to combat the unforeseen.

Leaving nothing to chance, all board and lodging facilities in the Steel City have been issued guidelines to verify the authenticity of guests and keep a tab on their movements. Plans are afoot to make it mandatory for landlords to properly verify the identity of prospective tenants before letting out houses.

Need for security precautions are not unfounded.

As this industrial capital of Orissa is cosmopolitan of nearly 6 lakh people with a sizeable floating population. Civilian installations like the Rourkela Steel Plant, National Institute of Technology, etc besides sensitive police and CRPF establishments are major concerns. But keeping complete watch over covert criminal or insurgency activities has not been a cake walk for the already under-staffed force.

The vast RPD jurisdiction includes the Maoist- infested Bonai sub-division and part of Panposh sub-division with a major stretch being porous border with the Naxal hotbed of Jharkhand. Rourkela SP Santosh Bala said the moves are directed to ensure a deterrence against criminals wishing to set up network at the ever-growing cosmopolitan city. She said the landlords would also be sensitised to be sure of the credentials of their tenants. She added random scanning of transit points and road routes also get priority. Sources also feel that there is a need to strengthen ‘community policing’.

For the past two years commercial vehicles at the Rourkela railway station are under mandatory provision to note down in police register their movements in the night.

Government to set up internal security wing

Express News Service First Published : 02 Dec 2008 04:08:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 02 Dec 2008 02:12:04 PM IST

BANGALORE: The state government has decided to set up an internal security force __ an integrated force comprising Anti Terror Cell, Anti Naxal Force (ANF) and the Coastal Security Force.

Besides this, the government has also decided to raise a special commando force on the lines of the NSG by setting up a training centre at Kudremukh in Chikmagalur.

Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa told reporters after an all party leaders’ meeting on Monday that the State would also request the Centre to station a unit of National Security Guards (NSG).

The proposed internal security force would be headed by an IPS officer of the rank of ADGP, the Chief Minister said and added that the government has sanctioned an ATC with 750 commando trained personnel . The internal security force will also have a special wing to tackle with left extremists (like Naxalites), Yeddyurappa said.

He also instructed the police to compulsorily register all cases.

The government also decided to train at least 100 personnel in each of the 12 battalions of the Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP). The government would also make a request to the Centre to fund setting up of another two battalions of Indian Reserve Battalion.

Apart from these decisions, the government has also proposed to raise the ration of population and police. Right now, there are 92 police per one lakh people. The government proposes to increase it to 150 police per one lakh of people.

On the outcome of the all party meeting, the CM said that Opposition party leaders had expressed solidarity with the government besides expressing willingness to be part of the delegation to meet the Prime Minister to seek more aid for enhance security.

Emerging out of the meeting, KPCC president R V Deshpande, Opposition leaders H D Kumaraswamy, Mallikharjun Kharge, D K Shiva Kumar, Vatal Nagaraj, V S Ugrappa stated that they support whatever steps taken by the government to improve security.

These leaders were critical of the CM for rampant transfer of police officials affecting their morale.

Shortage of arms for cops: Officials blame Centre

2 Dec 2008, 1333 hrs IST, TNN

MUMBAI: The state police face a major problem of shortage of firearms. The police manual prescribes mandatory training for all officials, particularly shooting practice at the firing range. According to a senior IPS official, the norms prescribed in the manual now exist only on paper, because of the acute shortage of ammunition for practice and the non-availability of a firing range.

As per rules, every district should have a firing range exclusively for the police. But official records indicate that more than half the state's districts have no independent firing range. "We have constables who have not opened fire even for practice ever since their recruitment. As a result, they are unable to retaliate when tackling terrorism,'' the official said.

The official said that although the state government had requested ammunition for training purposes, the Centre's response was dismal. "We have been asking for higher quantities, but we get meagre amounts. However, in view of the changed circumstances, we now expect a better deal from the Centre,'' the official said.

Interview of the Week

Media reports are biased. They don't see Hindu plight—Dr VS Acharya, Home Minister

Media is giving coverage only for the problems of minorities and totally neglecting the plights of Hindus. In fact complaints have been registered and police investigation is going on against vandalising Hindu gods, throwing stones on the Hindu religious processions, defacing the walls of the temple with deriding slogans, instigating a communal clash by hoisting a Pakistan flag.

In the backdrop of three suspected Naxalites and a police constable who were killed in an exchange of fire in a forest near Mavinahole in Mudigere taluk, Chikmagalur district in the early hours of November 19, this correspondent R Guru Prasad met Dr VS Acharya—Home Minister to ascertain the facts. In an exclusive interview to Organiser, Dr VS Acharya gave details of his future plans to strengthen the police force to combat Naxalism and terrorism.

What happened in Mavinahole in Mudigere?
There are ten anti-Naxal Force camps in coastal Karnataka. They had intensified their combing operations to eradicate naxalites from our state. During one such regular combing operations near Mavinahole forest area, few naxalites were seen approaching nearby village. Usually Naxalites come out of forest to threaten the public, collect weapons ,groceries and to circulate their pamphlets. When asked for their identity they started firing and in retaliation we had to kill three of them in an encounter. We will get vital clue about the other possible naxalites once we arrest the lady naxalite who escaped in the darkness.

How do you solve the problem of naxalism in Karnataka?
When compared to other states Naxalites are in very few numbers in our state. Their numbers were reduced drastically after arresting their key members and seized the huge number of hidden weapons in the forests. There was always a fear factor haunting naxalites. Our government had sent a message that we will listen to them if they come forward for talks leaving behind their weapons. Unfortunately, they have no respect for the law and order and the constitution. We had intensified the combing operations because naxalites managed to conduct a meeting of a gullible villagers recently. We will strengthen the police force by providing the vehicles and latest equipments and also by filling the vacant posts.

What happened to the setting up of task force to protect sensitive areas like Dams etc.?
Soon we will start a separate task force and give two years rigorous training to protect sensitive places which are in the hit list of terrorists.

How do you tackle the ever increasing crime graph?
For the first time we are constituting a separate dedicated intelligence wing. The objective to have a separate intelligence wing is to research and assist the police force about the modern techniques used by terrorists and the organised crimes including cyber crimes.

How do you ensure the safety of people and the places of worship?
We are not biased to any religion. Our police are investigating the cases of church attacks as well as the attacks on the temples. Media is giving coverage only for the problems of minorities and totally neglecting the plights of Hindus. In fact complaints have been registered and police investigation is going on against vandalising Hindu gods, throwing stones on the Hindu religious processions, defacing the walls of the temple with deriding slogans, instigating a communal clash by hoisting a Pakistan flag, cow slaughter etc., but media is not publishing any of these.

What are the outcome of ‘Police Manthana’
Recently, we had a day long ‘ Police Manthana’ with the senior most police officers and discussed about many things. I personally believe that interstate co-operation and interstate exchange of views is required to tackle terrorism. In this regard Government of Karnataka is already in touch with Gujarat, Kerala and Maharashtra. Giving more aids to ATC (anti-terrorist cell), interstate vigilance, providing a mobile postmortem van for every district, bringing a legislature on cyber crime etc., are the outcome of manthana. We want to make the Karnataka police the best in the country and we are releasing grants for purchasing modern equipments, new infrastructures, vehicles as promised in the budget and recruiting the staff.

Normal life hit as Maoists observe PLGA Week

By Ratnakar Dash
Malkangiri, Dec 2: Normal life has been badly affected in several Blocks of this naxalite-infested district of Odisha with the Maoists beginning to observe the People Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA) Week from Tuesday morning.

The three police station areas where normal life has been hit are Kalimela, MV-79 and Motu. No public transport vehicles were seen in these areas since morning putting the people in trouble.

Shops and business establishments were closed in several areas, according to reports reaching the district headquarters town of Malkangiri.

The Maoists, under the banner of Communist Party of India (Maoist) have put up banners and posters in several localities urging people to join their organisation to fight corruption and exploitation.

According to District Superintendent of Police Satyabrata Bhoi, security arrangements have been strengthened in government offices and other establishment to prevent any untoward incident.

Patrolling and combing operation has been in intensified in areas where the Maoists had strong presence as the administration was apprehending naxal attacks during the week.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Maoists may lose tribal support , amends constitution

Sumanta Ray Chaudhuri / DNA
Tuesday, December 02, 2008 02:09 IST

KOLKATA: The latest amended draft of the Maoist constitution in India has certain directives which could make Maoists lose their strong tribal support base in West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh.

In the amended draft, the Maoists have called for a total boycott of worshipping symbolic structures like stones, trees and animals. “This will hurt tribal sentiments to a great extent, as these symbols are the principal worship medium of different tribal groups in the country,” said an official of the Intelligence Branch (IB) of the West Bengal Police, which has got hold of a copy of the amended draft.

The Maoists, in the amended constitutional draft, have also boycotted propagating epics like Mahabharata and Ramayana. “The Maoists have called for action against those who propagate such religious sentiments or popularise such epics. In simple terms, the Maoists have declared a virtual jihad against following any kind of mass religious practice,” he said.

Intelligence agencies in these states are studying the loopholes in the amended constitutional draft and are trying to exploit the directives to disassociate Maoists from the tribal groups and weaken their traditional espousal.

However, according to Ranjit Gupta, former police commissioner of Kolkata although these extremist groups call themselves Maoists, in reality they follow the principles of Che Guevara. “So, the first task of the administration will be to develop the region where Maoists are active. This will automatically ensure that Maoists get isolated from local tribes these. But this isolation has to be followed up police action,” Gupta warned.

Maoists kill two, conduct famine raids

Special Correspondent

VISAKHAPATNAM: A group of 15 members of the CPI (Maoist) hacked to death two villagers of Ramaraopalem under Lothugedda panchayat in Chintapalli mandal around midnight on Sunday.

Earlier, they conducted famine raids at the nearby Meduru village and destroyed a motorcycle, television set and household belongings of Lothugedda Sarpanch Marri Babu Rao and looted a provision shop owned by Atmakuru Govindu.

Take away cash, gold

They took away Rs. 25,000 in cash and gold ornaments weighing six tolas.

The total property destroyed or damaged was estimated at Rs. 8 lakh, it was learnt.

Superintendent of Police Akun Sabharwal said that after destroying the property at Meduru, the Maoist cadres went to Ramaraopalem, one kilometre away, and called out Vantala Rama Rao (50) and Killo Sona (38) from their houses.

Some household articles and vehicles belonging to the two were torched.

The Maoists tied the hands of the victims and said they were taking them to a meeting. But after a short distance from their homes, the two Girijans were hacked to death.

The Maoists alleged that the two were landlords, oppressing the poor and acting as police informers.

The Maoists also tried to damage the control panel of Essar company but as they could not succeed, they took away the solar panels and some sets of batteries.

It was suspected that one Sridhar led the Maoists in the attack but the complete details are not yet available.

Truck with bomb powder hijacked


Ranchi, Dec. 1: The hijack of a truck loaded with tonnes of ammonium nitrate — a chemical compound used in explosives — from NH-23 last night has set off alarm bells.

Though senior police officers have ruled out Naxalite role in the incident, local villagers stress that the hijack was orchestrated by the rebels. They said the truck driver and his helper were later rescued from the red zone in semi-conscious state.

Sources said the truck, carrying 24 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, was on its way to an explosives factory at Gomia in Bokaro district from a chemical factory in Chhattisgarh. Six men in a Sumo chased the truck from Petarwar and forced the driver to stop 8km from Gola police station in Ramgarh in the early hours.

While four of the men took control of the truck, two others grabbed driver Mohammed Muslim and helper Mohammed Mihnaz. Both were beaten up and dumped in separate places. While Mihnaz was found in a subconscious state at Katkamsandih, 75km from the place of hijack, in Hazaribagh, Muslim was rescued from Indra forest, about 10km from where the helper was abandoned.

Police said they did not suspect Naxalite hand. “This looks like the handiwork of some inter-state gang,” said officer in charge of Gola police station Pran Ranjan.

Ramgarh superintendent of police A.V. Honkar agreed. He said the chemical was in powdered form and was not itself an explosive, but an ingredient. “The compound is also used for producing fertilisers,” he said.

Local residents, however, refuse to buy the police version. “The places from where the driver and his helper were recovered dominated by Naxalites. The sub-zonal commander of CPI(Maoist), Krishna Yadav is active in the area,” said a resident of Hazaribagh.

Another resident added that in May a van carrying cash had been hijacked, but the police, initially, said rebels were not involved. “They admitted the same later when the charred remains of the van were found.”

Whether rebels or not, the matter of concern is the quantity of ammonium nitrate that is missing. Experts said 24 tonnes of the compound could be turned into bombs powerful enough to blow up the entire state capital. IG (provision) S.N. Pradhan said efforts are on to locate the truck..

Raman Srivastava’s new job a tough challenge

Raman Srivastava

Arjun RaghunathFirst Published : 01 Dec 2008 01:25:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 01 Dec 2008 04:19:01 PM IST

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: It may be an unexpected turn. Raman Srivastava, who is leaving for New Delhi to occupy one of the plum posts in the Home Department, will team up with a new Minister and most probably a new national security advisor. The new team is expected to give a fillip to the internal security of the country in the wake of unprecedented terror attacks and political turmoil.

Srivastava who has been appointed as Special Secretary, Internal Security, in the Ministry of Home Affairs is taking over the seat at a time when the nation’s security strategy is under scrutiny. He will take over the new post in a couple of days.

“It is going to be the toughest challenge in my career and I am prepared to take it up,” the 1973 batch IPS officer told to this website’s newspaper.

Srivastava has the rare distinction of being the first civil service officer in the state to get a note of appreciation from the State Government in the form of a Government Order.

“The commendable service of Raman Srivastava extends to a wide range of activities but special mention is to be made in the areas like maintenance of law and order, introduction of community policing, crime investigation and matters relating to internal security and communal harmony.

His leadership was a great boost to the entire police force,” says the GO issued by the Government recently.

As Special Secretary, (Internal Secretary), Srivastava will have supervisory powers over the law and order of the entire nation, direct control over policing in Jammu and Kashmir and North- East, matters pertaining to terrorism and drug trafficking involving Pakistan, communal violence, naxalite violence, extradition and granting security clearance to sensitive projects. He will be reporting directly to the Union Home Minister.

A native of Uttar Pradesh, Srivastava had been heading the Kerala Police for more than three-and-a-half years.

He was appointed overlooking the seniority of Upendra Verma and M.G.A.Ramen.

Srivastava who had held various key posts including that of Executive director (security) of ONGC was caught up in a controversy following his alleged involvement in the ISRO spy case in the 1990s. The case was dismissed as baseless by the Supreme Court later.


Jacob Punnose who has been appointed as new DGP will take over the post on Monday.

DGP Raman Srivastava will formally hand over the charge to Jacob Punnose at the Police Headquarters here at 9.15 a.m.

5 rebels, ammo in net

Ranchi, Dec. 1: Five PLFI extremists were arrested this morning from Itachildiri village under Bero police station.

Two 9mm pistols with two magazines and 16 rounds of ammunition were recovered, along with a .315 pistol, one cartridge, Naxalite literature, a cell phone and motorbike.

Police closed in on them while the People’s Liberation Front of India rebels were planning to target a contractor who had undertaken the construction work of a 100m bridge over Bandih river, about 30km from the district headquarters. The contractor was reluctant to pay Rs 5 lakh as the second instalment of levy, said senior superintendent of police M.S. Bhatia. The estimated cost of the bridge is Rs 1.5 crore.

Bhatia said Idri village resident Surendra Singh; Tapkara Anandpur resident Tulsi Das Bhengra; Murta village resident Nagendra Lohra; Thurna Pani resident Naveen Singh; and Itachilli village resident Gobardhan Kherwar had been arrested. Bhatia said they were close aides of PLFI founder Dinesh Gope and collected levy from contractors. They were wanted in five cases at Bero, Lapung, Torpa and Pithoria police stations

Long way to go for our police

Naveen Ammembala

First Published : 01 Dec 2008 04:48:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 01 Dec 2008 10:46:52 AM IST

BANGALORE: Mumbai attacks have again exposed weakness of our police and intelligence apparatus.

Karnataka police top brass speak on problems facing the department and solutions.

Training lapses

White collar crimes and tech-based terrorism have kept pace with the growth of IT/BT here, but law-keepers have not changed with the times: Karnataka Police Academy and other police training institutes follow a syllabus that is over three decades old.

Skills in tackling naxalism and terrorism, computer skills, use of laptops and global positioning systems, cyber crime & laws, cell phone application, brain-mapping, narco analysis, are areas our police should be receiving specialised training in.

ADGP D V Guruprasad CoD (Training and Recruitment) has prepared a new syllabus for police training. The syllabus is likely to be incorporated in January. New subjects like explosives, knowledge of improvised explosive devices, bomb disposal, collection of intelligence sources and running counter intelligence activities. The stress is also on police community relations, disaster management, yoga, unarmed-combat, crowd control and training in modern weapons like AK 47, AK 57, 0.303/SLR, pistol/revolver shooting etc.

Lapses in intelligence gathering

DG and IGP Srikumar is all praise for the state’s intelligence wing and credits the success against naxals to the wing.

Highly placed officers in intelligence cell said that being posted to the cell was a “punishment”.

Though they are expected to be covering areas like VIP, terrorist movements, political and legal areas and other surveillance, they are left updating the government about their requirements with little focus on surveillance and security of citizens.

The Intelligence Bureau’s warning on likely terror threats fall on deaf ears, claimed a senior officer of ATC Intelligence. He also revealed that ‘Confidential Notes’ from the Central Intelligence Bureau is always forwarded to the state police which find their way to the dustbin.

Dogs can’t sniff explosives
Terrorists are using modern explosives like TNT, DNT, MNT, Picric Acid, Teryl, RDX and HMX. But, in Karnataka, the sniffer dogs, which are considered to be the most effective tool in explosive detection, haven't been trained in detecting such explosives. Dogs with the police are only capable of detecting metals, gun powders and gelatin sticks.

Ignorant in recruitment process
Finger Print Section of the state police is in a big crisis as it is short of human resources.

For the past 25 years, the department had a number of vacant Sub Inspectors post. This year the state police had selected 161 PSIs including 21 SI’s for Finger Print Bureau but they are yet to be appointed.

The Finger Print SIs were selected after they were tested for their efficiency in scientific qualities.

The DG&IGP’s office has not approved selection done eight months back. The selected candidates are waiting for call letters.

Traffic and civil police are not sharing inputs.

Traffic police just focus on nabbing traffic violators and fail to identify suspicious men. This is left to civil officers. Traffic police now plan “Bangalore Traffic Improvement Project- 2010” and CCTVs will be placed across sensitive areas and movements will be traced by centralised tracking system.

Just one FSL team

Many terrorists are brought to the city for narco analysis test, but the forensic sciences department, located in Madiwala, is still functioning with very minimal staff. There are talks of increasing the staff but it has remained a long awaited dream. If an incident occurs in a far away area in the city or in the neighbouring city, the station officers have to protect the evidence from being destroyed.

Karnataka to set up commando units to fight terror

Bangalore (IANS): The Karnataka Government has decided to set up crack commando units to fight terror and instill confidence in the people that the state is prepared to counter any internal or external threat, a top police official said on Monday.

"In the wake of terror attacks in Mumbai last week, there is a lot of apprehension in the people about the state of security and our preparedness to deal with such eventualities. To instill confidence in them and send a strong message, we are setting up three platoons of crack commandos to counter any terror threat," Karnataka DGP R. Srikumar told IANS.

Each platoon will comprise 30 commandos, with the personnel drawn from the state reserve police, rapid action force and the anti-Naxal force, set up to counter Maoists in 2005.

"The commandos will be trained to counter any threat, be it from terrorists, militants or anti-national forces attempting to disturb peace and cause insecurity in the people through violence. They will be equipped with modern weapons and equipment, including AK-47 assault rifles and bullet-proof jackets," Srikumar said.

Srikumar declined to reveal where the platoons will be deployed, citing strategic and security reasons. "These are sensitive details. How can I disclose them? Their job will be to protect people and sensitive places from terror attacks and prevent any extraordinary threat to vital installations of national importance," he said.

As part of plans to modernise the state police force and beef up security across the state, especially in cities and towns, the state government sanctioned Rs.800 million this fiscal (2008-09) to the home department.

"Modernisation and expansion of the police force is an ongoing process. Karnataka is the first state in the country to have initiated reforms to modernise the police force because our belief is we cannot have first world police with third world resources," Srikumar noted.

Admitting resource constraints and lack of priority had come in the way of transforming the state police into a combative force, with commensurate support from intelligence agencies, communication networks and feedback from the people, he said the spate of bomb blasts in many cities, including Bangalore and the recent terror attacks in Mumbai, had reinforced the urgency of bracing up for the worst by preparing with the best.

"It is ironical the per capita expenditure on internal security in the state has been Re.0.90, which is far less than what a cup of tea or coffee costs. We have submitted a report with estimates to the government for increased budgetary allocation to enhance our preparedness and strengthen our human resources to meet our requirements," Srikumar added.

The decision to set up crack commando units also comes in the wake of mounting pressure on the government from a section of the industry, led by IT, biotech firms and business chambers to ensure protection of people and security for their operations from potential terror threats.

Top Naxal killed in eastern UP

Sonbhadra (PTI): A top naxal, carrying a reward of Rs 20,000 on his head, was killed in an encounter with security personnel in Belach village, police said on Monday.

Shatrughan, a self styled area commander, was shot dead during an operation by police and Special Operation Group (SOG) personnel last night, Superintendent of Police Ramkumar said.

A revolver, a double barrel gun and cartridges were recovered from his possession.

Some of Shatrughan's associates, however escaped. Police suspect that they might have been injured in the encounter and a manhunt has been launched for them.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

MUMBAI: More on Tactical Innovation

It's clear from the Mumbai attack that terrorist organizations are inexorably moving closer to the global guerrilla model of warfare (it was an evolutionary improvement over the example the PCC set in the 2006 Sao Paulo attacks). Extremely small teams, operating autonomously, that rapidly move to attack a flexible set of objectives to achieve a leveraged and synergistic effect. Generic improvements (that can apply to a variety of motives) in technique that we can expect to see in the near future include:

Better use of infrastructure disruption. While panicked crowds and other forms of localized disruption of transportation hubs are effective, a strategic approach to disruption that includes strikes on communications, transportation and energy hubs would prolong the impact and slow the government response. The key point here is that attacks on strategic systempunkts can impact tactical environments at a distance (akin to the Parthian shot that distracts and depletes an enemy).

A focus on corporations and commercial elites. Less heavily protected than government targets and more important to the economic viability of the city. Easily "taxed" through assault in order to force a shift in operations and departures. This will run in parallel, but not replace, a bevy of attacks on foreign businesspeople (which heightens media response but has less long term impact on the city's viability).

Fear management. The combination of rapid movement and indiscriminate slaughter of civilians did achieve a high level of panic. However, in order to create panic induced casualties and prolong the psychological impact, there will be an increasing focus on channeling crowds along "fear vectors."

Media spamming to co-opt information flows. At a minimum, several Web sites and mass e-mailings that launch in parallel to the attack. It could also include multi-channel radio/TV transmissions. In either case, rather than claims of responsibility or justification (a legacy approach), the content of the messaging will be seemingly real-time information on the attack configured to maximize fear/panic, disinformation, and confusion.

The late November commando attack on Mumbai India is a great demonstration of the state of the art in "urban takedowns." Essentially, an urban takedown is an attempt by a small group of attackers to overwhelm a city and force it into a prolonged shutdown (see the site, Naxalite Rage for an excellent exploration of the incident). The attack consisted of:

A nautical assault (coup de main). Several boats. laden with explosives and commandos armed to the teeth, gained entry to the city via the port. This allowed maximal entry velocity into the city's center. However, a rapid response by the Indian naval units in the area closed off the water as an escape route.

Swarm of the city using autonomous "buddy pairs." Each pair had their own routes, minimizing the potential for fratricide. While the initial dispersion of the group was concentrated, the deployment was the opposite (this is an inversion of the formula for animal pack hunters and U-boat swarming). The pair teams shot/blew up targets en route to maximize confusion/fear.
Use of the city's infrastructure for movement and coordination. The city's transportation infrastructure was leveraged, travel by roads and the acquisition of vehicles. Cell phone communication for coordination (not confirmed yet)?

Hostage drama at international hotels. Some of the buddy pairs were able to assault international hotels, which allowed them to focus on killing foreigners. These assaults became prolonged hostage dramas when the government's forces arrived.

Maoist posters found plastered in Bhubaneswar

November 30th, 2008 - 9:56 pm ICT by IANS

Bhubaneswar, Nov 30 (IANS) Around half a dozen posters warning people against joining some Hindu groups were found plastered on public walls in the Orissa capital Sunday, the police and eyewitnesses said. These were allegedly pasted by Maoists. The posters in Nayapalli area of the city asked people to refrain from joining groups which were allegedly involved in religious violence.

The posters describe some Hindu groups (such as Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal) as rioters and warned people of dire consequences if they joined such groups.

The police have registered a case and sent the posters for forensic examination.

“We are investigating the case,” Deputy Commissioner of Police H.K. Lal told IANS.

Similar posters were also found plastered in parts of Orissa’s Kandhamal district, a television channel reported.

The district located some 200 km from here witnessed widespread communal violence after the murder of Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati and four of his aides at his ashram Aug 23.

While the police blamed Maoists for the killings, some Hindu organisations alleged Christians were behind the killings and launched attacks on the community.

Thousands of Christians were forced to flee from their homes after their houses were attacked by rampaging mobs. More than 10,000 people are still living in government-run relief camps in the district.

Maoist posters put up in Bhubaneswar

Kalinga Times Correspondent

Bhubaneswar, Nov 30: Several Maoist posters asking people to keep away from various Sangh Parivar organisations were found put up on roadside walls and culverts in some localities of the city on Sunday.

The posters were purportedly issued by Communist Party of India (Maoist).

The city police have registered a formal case and seized about seven posters.

The matter had been taken seriously and investigation was being conducted to know who veracity of the posters, Police Commissioner of the twin-city of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar Bijay Kumar Sharma told a local television channel.

The posters termed Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal as communal forces and asked people not to join these groups.

The development assumed significance as the Maoists had claimed to have killed VHP leader Swami Lakshmanananda in Kandhamal district in August.

A few days after the killing of the Swami, the extremists had also released a hit-list giving names of several local leaders of Kandhamal.

The Maoists had also killed a VHP activist in Kandhamal a few weeks ago

Maoists blow up school in Palamau

Ranchi, Nov. 30: CPI(Maoist) extremists blew up a portion of a state-run middle school at Dwarika under the Panki police station area of Palamau district on Saturday.

The incident took place around midnight.

The Palamau superintendent of police Deepak Verma has confirmed the attack and also said the police force were camping inside the school premises about three days ago.

“The main gate and windows of the school were damaged in the incident. There is no information of any deaths yet,” Verma added.

Sources, however, said two of the seven rooms of the school were badly damaged in the incident and the situation was not conducive to hold classes.

“The purpose of blowing the school was to restrain the police personnel from using the school building and for holding future camps. Basically, they do not want the police to start operations against them,” a police official said requesting anonymity.

Worker abducted

Four-armed criminals abducted health worker Satyendra Nath Sahay of the Tuimupath sub health centre from his residence, situated on the outskirts of Lohardaga under Senha police station yesterday night.

Lohardaga police superintendent Subodh Prasad said the incident took place around 10pm when four-armed criminals came on their bikes posing as patients and abducted Sahay.

Prasad said efforts were on for the recovery of the health worker. “Though we have not received any ransom calls yet, the abduction was probably executed for money. In any case, we have found several clues about the abductors and are going to make a breakthrough soon,” he added.

He said extremists may not have a hand in the kidnapping

750-strong special force to fight terror

S. Rajendran

The fully trained professional group will tackle all anti-national activities

Men selected for the special force will be given a one-step promotion

The selection process has commenced

Bangalore: Following the Mumbai terror attacks, the Karnataka Police are geared up to constitute a 750-strong comprehensive police wing to tackle all aspects of anti-national activities including terrorism and naxalism .

The special unit, which is stated to have received formal approval from Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa and Minister for Home V.S. Acharya, will have various components, including a section devoted to intelligence gathering and preventive measures, a large strike force and a section to investigate the cases. It will be a fully trained and professional force, and the State Government has also approved a scheme to put the strike force segment of the special wing through training in some of the Defence establishments. Karnataka already has a special commando force trained by the National Security Guards. The sources in the Government indicated that the men selected for the special force would be given a one-step promotion straightway to serve as an incentive. A similar incentive has been provided by the Government of Gujarat. The incentive would, however, be applicable as long as the men remained part of the force, and on repatriation to their parent unit “they will be back in the same position”. The selection process had commenced, they added.

A high-level team headed by the Home Minister and comprising among others Director-General and Inspector-General of Police R. Srikumar; Director-General of Police, Corps of Detectives, Ajai Kumar Singh; Joint Commissioner of Police, Bangalore, Gopal Hosur; and Superintendent of Police, Chitradurga district, Labhu Ram, recently visited Gujarat to study the practices in policing there. The State has also planned to send high-level police teams to Jammu and Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, New Delhi and other States for a study.

Mr. Yeddyurappa said the State Government would provide all that the police required to strengthen the internal security mechanism. The Government is also contemplating strengthening the police force in urban areas, particularly Bangalore. For instance, the Hoysala squads will be doubled in Bangalore, from 100 to 200. “The Government provided additional funds of Rs. 25 crore recently and will provide more if required. We will give top priority for providing security to life and property of the people of the State. A free hand has been given to the police to plan and execute any modernisation scheme,” he said. Mr. Srikumar said that the new police wing would comprise among others the Anti-Naxal Force (ANF), the Internal Security Wing, a section of the intelligence wing dedicated to anti-national operations, the Coastal Security Police, and the Anti-terrorist Cell.

Bengal Maoists spread a trail of blood

There is a lot of hue and cry about the relationship between absence of development and the presence of Maoists. This article attempts to analyse the issue in the context of recent Lalgarh crisis in West Bengal.

THERE IS a common belief in India that the so-called Maoists exploit the sense of deprivation among poor locals in underdeveloped areas in rural India. But this is only half the story , the rest is that they leave no stone unturned in ensuring that this sense of deprivation perpetuates in the people’s mind, which is essential for the very existence of these so called ‘revolutionaries’.
One such example is the Lalgarh crisis. It all started from the day of laying the foundation stone of Jindal Steel’s mega project in Shalboni in West Midnapur district, West Bengal.

As the land acquisition process was a bit different as mostly arid land was acquired for this huge project, land row could not gain momentum inspite of the initial efforts by the opposition. The Rs 35,000 crore project includes one of the largest steel factory of 1 crore tonne capacity, a 300 MW power plant and a cement factory of 1 million tonne capacity.

At least 24,000 youth, mostly locals, are going to be directly or indirectly employed by the project, resulting in an ultimate change in the whole economic scenario of this backward district. Obviously, the underprivileged rural people will get the benefit of this economic development, which will at least to some extent, help to alleviate the sense of deprivation and lack of development there.

This might look like a silver lining in the dark horizon to most of us, but to the ‘Maoists’, there can’t be any more ominous signal than this. Having failed to mobilise local people into land protests like Singur or Nandigram, they became desperate to stop the project at any cost. The so-called Maoists, who had blown off an ambulance killing a doctor (Dhaniram Mandi, 46), a nurse (Bharati Majhi, 24) and the driver (Bapi Misir, 45) on October 22, in broad daylight, planned to blow off the CM, Buddhadeb Bhattacharya’s convoy this time.

On November 2, after the ceremony of laying of foundation stone of the project, when the CM was returning, the Maoists exploded a deadly remote-controlled bomb. But incidentally, they could neither kill the CM, nor the Central ministers or Jindal brothers, who were just behind the CM’s convoy.

A few policemen, who were in a jeep behind the CM’s convoy were fatally injured. This sudden attack left the whole police administration in utter surprise, when they discovered underground wires more than 1 km long, winding through the blast site into the paddy fields.

Sensing a possible nexus between some of the local people and the ‘Maoists’, the police launched their search operations, in whic they allegedly ‘tortured’ some families. The accused police officer involved in the alleged ‘torture’ was transferred following this allegation but his mistake had already agitated the rural tribal people there.

This was exactly the situation the Maoists were waiting for because now they could put their own demands before the administration in the name of the newly formed ‘Pulishi Santrash Birodhi Janaganer Committee’ (‘Mass Committee Against Violence by Police’).

Interestingly, the committee, which openly denies any Maoist link, demands:

i) The acquittal of all the arrested Maoists between the year 1998 and 2008.

ii) The acquittal of all the arrested persons in the CM’s convoy blast case.

iii) The withdrawal of all the cases (including murder cases) against the famous Maoist leader, Shashadhar Mahato.

iv) The withdrawal of police, CRPF and other security forces from the Maoist dominated areas etc. In other words, the committee is demanding for a free region for the Maoists where they could run a parallel government.

The armed members of this committee felled thousands of trees on the roads, cut the roads by digging across it, in order to completely disrupt transport and communication. They killed a local ration dealer after he failed to supply 100 kgs of rice. With each passing day, the committee is making its stand more rigid, their demands are increasing and their agitation is spreading to new areas.

While the state government and administration is still trying hard to strike a deal with the agitators through discussions, some political forces are active there to dismiss any peace process for their own narrow personal and political gains. Mamata Banerjee and her party colleagues are right there to take the opportunity of this volatile situation. (source: Mamata Stokes Lalgarh Fire, The Times of India, Kolkata, Nov 20, page 4). With a picture of TMC leader Sisir Adhikary dancing with weapons in his hand, a report in Nov 20, The Times of India says : ..But at a time when things were inching towards the better, Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee added fuel to the fire by announcing to carry forward their agitation... .When this article is being written, the deadlock is still there. Briefly, the truth is that the poor people living in an underdeveloped locality, suffered for various reasons, including administrative negligence for long and now some vested interests want them to remain there in darkness. Unless the poor and tribal people are allowed to voice their own demands, the opportunist forces will continue to hijack their movement to accomplish their own ends.

Railways to install hi-tech security gadgets

11/30/2008 12:11:08 PM

Still of armed terrorist who opened firing at the CST station

Alarmed by militants storming the CST in Mumbai, Indian Railways has decided to expedite plans to install hi-tech integrated security system worth Rs 600 crore at more than 100 stations identified as sensitive across the country.

"We are expediting the process of acquiring sophisticated equipment worth Rs 600 crore to be installed at certain stations identified as sensitive," a senior RPF official said.

The equipment to be purchased as part of the integrated security system include closed circuit televisions (CCTV), personal and baggage screening system, explosive detection and disposal facility at sensitive stations, including Delhi and Mumbai.

There are 185 stations identified as sensitive from the security point of view which include 17 stations in metro cities across the country. Besides acquiring modern security gadgets Railways has strengthened deployment of RPF personnel in many stations.

"We have deployed about 500 additional RPF personnel in Mumbai alone," said the official. Railways would also be acquiring electronic access control system from firms dealing with state-of-the-art security system.

Integrated security system will be installed under build, own, operate and transfer (BOOT) model at important stations, the official said.

A high-powered committee comprising senior officers from IB, NSG, RPF, CRPF, CISF and Railways had already submitted a composite security plan. The report has suggested various measures, including installation of high-tech security gizmos at sensitive stations, to strengthen security.

Trains and stations are becoming soft targets for terrorists, Naxalites and other disruptive forces causing loss of innocent lives and property. A total number of 73 people were killed in bomb blast incidents in trains in 2007 while the toll stood at 195 in 2006.

"Though there are a few door-frame metal detectors and hand-held metal detectors at certain stations, we are acquiring more such machines to be installed at many other stations identified as sensitive," the official said. As per the plan, entry and and exit points will be monitored and unauthorised entry will be curtailed.

On the plan to acquire CCTVs, the official said the aim is to put in place a sophisticated surveillance system with a minimum 30 days' recording facility and inbuilt intelligent software. "Keeping the rush at stations in mind, we want to have a system compatible with it," he said.

"We will also set up modern control rooms to monitor the system," said the official, adding the staff would be trained to handle these modern gadgets. Besides the security gadgets, the RPF would strengthen its dog squads by acquiring more sniffer and tracker dogs.


AP Government okays State Security Guards

Security personnel checking the premises of the State Assembly on Saturday whose session will begin on Monday.Express News ServiceFirst Published : 30 Nov 2008 03:53:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 30 Nov 2008 01:02:56 PM IST

HYDERABAD: Waking up to the terror attacks at Mumbai, the State Cabinet has cleared a proposal to constitute State Security Guards on the lines of the elite National Security Guards (NSG) to counter terror strikes.

The SSG cadre will be equipped with latest weapons and gadgets and is all likely to get trained by the NSG. Similar special teams also will be formed at the district level.

The Mumbai mayhem seems to have prompted the State Government to dust off several pending reports proposed for the State security apart from taking up new initiatives. A team of officials comprising Chief Secretary P Ramakanth Reddy, Director General of Police SSP Yadav and Additional DG (intelligence) Aravinda Rao were asked to prepare a detailed report on pending proposals and also new security measures to be taken up for State security.

Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy and Home Minister K Jana Reddy will hold a meeting on Monday to finalise the measures to be taken to tackle the terror attacks.

Sources said that the Cabinet has also discussed formation of Marine Security Forces to guard the 954 km-coastline of Andhra Pradesh apart from strengthening the marine police stations along the coast. The State anti-terrorist wing Octopus and the anti-Naxalite wing Greyhounds will also be strengthened with latest logistic support, technology and weapons.

The Chief Minister has asked the officials to make preparations for formation of the special police forces apart from strengthening the existing police forces immediately

Wanted rebel gunned down

Ranchi, Nov. 29: Dreaded Naxalite Ghashi Ram Munda, suspected to be the mastermind behind the murder of Tamar MLA Ramesh Singh Munda, was killed in an encounter with the police in the small hours today.

He was also suspected to be involved in the sensational ICICI Bank robbery and murder of Bundu sub-divisional police officer Pramod Kumar a couple of months agp.

The police also arrested two aides of Ghashi Ram after the encounter. They have been identified as Mrityunjay Das and Uday Das. The three belonged to the same village — Baruhatu of Bundu.

Ranchi senior superintendent of police M.S. Bhatia confirmed that Ghashi Ram was not only the mastermind of Munda’s murder but also of the killing of Bundu sub-divisional police officer Kumar. Bhatia also said that Ghashi Ram was the same person who masterminded the ICICI Bank loot of about Rs 5 crore in cash and gold worth over Rs 1.5 crore.

Kumar had been killed by the Naxalites in Tamar in a landmine ambush in July, following which MLA Munda had taken a tough anti-Naxalite stand. He was killed by the Naxalites a couple of days later when he was attending a function in a school in Bundu.

Bhatia said the police got a tip-off last night about Ghashi Ram’s presence along with his associates Nawadih village in Tamar. A team comprising CRPF jawans and district police was promptly rushed to the spot.

“They killed Ghashi Ram in an encounter. They also held two other Naxalites, but several others managed to escape. About six-seven rebels busy working out their new game plan, when the police ‘pounced’ upon them,” Bhatia added.

The police also have recovered one pistol, six live cartridges and two motorcycles from the spot. The arrested Naxalites have been sent to jail.