Friday, November 13, 2009

‘Maoists denuding Jhargram forest’

Kanchan Chakraborty Posted online: Saturday , Nov 14, 2009 at 0345 hrs

Kolkata : In a fresh salvo against the Maoists, the Left Front government has alleged that for the last one year the ultras are steadily denuding forests in the Jhargram sub-division in West Midnapore.

Speaking to The Indian Express, state Forest Minister Ananta Roy said the Maoists are encouraging locals and timber smugglers to fell trees in the forest areas.

“It is difficult to ascertain the volume of timber already lost and destroyed in the south Bengal forests during the last one year as forest guards have left their posts and they don’t have the courage to enter the forests infiltrated by armed cadres,” Roy said.

The minister said normal activities of the forest department have collapsed in Jhargram sub-division, particularly in blocks like Binpur I, Binpur II, and Salboni. It is to be noted that Lalgarh, which has remained the epicentre of the Maoist resistance is the block headquarter of Binpur I.

The department’s round-the-year programme of planting trees and felling them has been stopped in the three blocks. “The locals have been badly hit by this and they are losing their earnings,” said Roy. The department’s plan to construct roads in the forests under the NREGA scheme and distribution of the pattas (document of land right) among the tribals have also been held up in the three blocks. Nearly 18 per cent of the total land area (1.76 lakh hectare) in West Midnapore is covered by forests — of which 7,742 and 16,700 hectares of forest is located in Binpur I and Salboni blocks.
Roy admitted to his department’s failure in providing security to forest guards and government employees who were posted in Jhargram sub-division.

Troops, Maoists exchange gunfire
Central-state joint forces and Maoists exchanged fire at Chandra in Midnapore’s Kotwali police station area this evening but no one was injured in the hour-long gun-battle, the police said.

West Midnapore SP Manoj Verma said the Maoists opened fire at the security forces patrolling at Chandra, who then returned the fire.

Meanwhile, Asit Mahato, spokesperson of the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA), alleged six houses at Bakshirhat were damaged when fires broke out as security forces fired mortars in the villages. Verma denied the allegation. ENS

Tribal Bastar prepares for war

Neelesh Misra, Hindustan Times
Email Author
Bijapur (Chhattisgarh), November 13, 2009
First Published: 00:32 IST(13/11/2009)
Last Updated: 21:01 IST(13/11/2009)

Roadside photo studios are crammed with fearful villagers desperate to make ID cards. Soldiers getting off trains are being ushered into classrooms to learn tribal customs. Politicians are uniting.

Bastar is preparing for war.

In a turning point in the government’s approach to the 42-year-old Maoist insurgency, a nationally-coordinated, multi-state conglomerate of different military units will soon begin to elbow its way into rebel strongholds where governance doesn’t exist and few policemen have gone before.

“It is a retrievable war. It has not gone beyond repair,” Vijay Raman, national commander of the operation, told the Hindustan Times.

The challenges for security forces deep inside Chhattisgarh’s southern Bastar region, not well understood outside, make the present situation in the Kashmir Valley seem to some security officials like Disneyland.

Bastar, 10 times the size of Kashmir Valley, includes the Maoists’ liberated zone — the sprawling, out-of-bounds 4,000 sq km expanse called Abujhmarh (the unknown forest).

The swift spread of the Naxalite movement here is also a reflection of the deep angst of the lands — India’s richest in minerals, home to its poorest people — a sharp-edged conflict between the New India and the Other India.

So the government says the military offensive will be followed by aggressive development efforts.

Spearheaded by Home Minister P. Chidambaram, the government is about to begin its first-ever nationally coordinated offensive across several states against Maoists. For now, around 60,000 soldiers and policemen will slug it out in the Amazon-like jungles of Chhatt-isgarh, more coming in over the next five years and beyond.

In a first, security forces have not asked for the implementation of the Armed Forces Spe-cial Powers Act — a tough law that allows for ease in searches, raids and detention. The law has been blamed for widespread human rights violations in Kashmir and the Northeast.

“Five years,” said Vishwa Ranjan, Chhattisgarh’s director-general of police. “In five years, they will have to leave this area.”

16 suspected Maoists held in Chhattisgarh

(Source: IANS)
Published: Fri, 13 Nov 2009 at 17:56 IST Click Image to Enlarge

F Prev Next LRaipur: As many as 16 suspected Maoist guerrillas were arrested in Chhattisgarh's Bastar region Friday, police said.

The village level cadres, who are bracketed as 'Sangham members', were picked up from two different locations in Narayanpur district in the state's southern Bastar region, officials at the police headquarters her said.

Chhattisgarh's Bastar region, spread out over 0,000 sq km, comprises five districts - Dantewada, Bijapur, Narayanpur, Kanker and Bastar - and is considered a Maoist hotbed since the late 1980s.

Can use civilians to fight govt, warn Maoists

Manoj C G Posted online: Thursday , Nov 12, 2009 at 0852 hrs

New Delhi : With the Centre planning to move in more forces to combat Left-wing insurgents, the Maoists have for the first time indicated that they could use civilians in the war against the government. Giving an insight into their battle strategy, the Maoists have said they would not fight a “positional war” against a superior force and would instead employ guerilla warfare tactics.
Coming out with details about its operations, the Maoists have insisted that they enjoy “massive mass support” and claimed that a “handful of guerillas” had repulsed a massive joint operation by the Central forces in Dantewada district in September by “relying on the sea of people in which we swam like fish”. And they plan to use the local population in the future also to thwart more such attacks from security forces.

“All our plans, policies, strategy and tactics will be based entirely on the active involvement of the vast masses of people in this war of self-defence. The enemy class cannot decimate us without decimating the entire population in regions we control,” Maoist leader Azad, who is also the spokesperson of the group’s central committee, said in an interview with The Indian Express.

Almost reciprocating the Centre in discussing their detailed fighting strategy, Azad said the Maoists would never get into a head-to-head war with the “superior” government forces, like the LTTE rebels had done in Sri Lanka, for fear of being aerially bombarded.

“Until the time we reach a decisive stage in our war, we will not fight a positional war in a small area against a superior force that is likely to resort to aerial bombardment if needed. We can fight the mightiest enemy by properly adhering to the principles of guerilla warfare. We will hit the enemy when and where it is convenient to us and not when and where he provokes us,” he said.

Amidst reports that Naxalite groups are regrouping in Andhra Pradesh, the Maoist leader confirmed they were trying to rebuild the movement in the southern state.

Ruling out any possibility of the Maoists laying down arms, he said, “We may lose some forces in this brutal offensive by the enemy....Even if we lose some forces we shall rebuild the movement as we are now doing in Andhra Pradesh. You will see the results of our painstaking underground work in the near future.”

Azad also reiterated that the Maoists were ready for a ceasefire but “never, not even in the dreams” can think about laying down arms.

45 quintals of explosives meant for Maoists seized

Gaya, Nov 12 (PTI) In a huge haul, about 45 quintals of explosives meant for Maoists were seized by the Special Task Force of Bihar police from two places in naxal-hit Gaya district in the wee hours today.

Acting on a tip off, police raided a shop at Gaulakhshni area here and seized 29 gunny bags containing the explosives, Superintendent of Police S M Khopade said.

The STF also raided a house of Hari Yadav, suspected to be having links with ultras, under Delha police station and seized 70 sacks of explosive materials, mostly ammonium nitrate, Khopade said.

Each of the sacks contained 40 to 45 kg of explosives, he said, adding huge quantity of naxal literature was also recovered during the police operation.

The explosives were highly inflammable and forensic experts have been called from Patna to test the material, the SP added.

Job drive in Maoist zones


New Delhi, Nov. 13: The Centre is planning a more pro-active rural job scheme package in the worst Maoist-hit regions, with the state governments collecting applications and ensuring job cards to every eligible household and fast-tracking payment.

As part of the efforts to counter the rebel threat through development, Delhi has asked nine states to start at least one National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme project in every village in the 33 districts it considers the worst affected by the rebels.

Every eligible household in these districts are to be brought under the job scheme, the rural development ministry has written to Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bengal, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Orissa.

These states must also launch an awareness campaign on the scheme through “wall writing, street plays, distribution of pamphlets and posters, use of television and hoardings”, the letter says.

The workers must be paid within a fortnight — a process that can now take months. (See chart)

A ministry review had found that only 3.2 per cent rural households in these 33 districts were provided the mandatory 100 days’ employment under the scheme in the year 2008-09, although there were no reports of Maoists disrupting the scheme’s implementation, an official said. A standard argument offered by those who want a crackdown before development is that the rebels are likely to disrupt government projects and snatch the money unless driven out first.

An official credited Rahul Gandhi for the latest move. Rahul, a member of the House consultative committee on the job scheme, had at a meeting questioned the ministry’s claims about the performance of the scheme in Maoist-hit states. “He pulled up the minister and officials… and asked for a (more accurate) performance report by the next meeting,’’ said an official who was at the meeting.

The government has also asked the states to start development projects on the plots of small and marginal farmers and the holders of Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, below-poverty-line and Indira Awas Yojana cards.

Maoist's' family demand trial

TNN 12 November 2009, 10:10pm IST

SAMBALPUR: Family of an arrested suspected Maoist of Ranigola village in Deogarh district, staged a dharna in front of ADM (Deogarh)'s office on
Thursday, demanding a speedy and fair trial for the accused. He was reportedly arrested two years ago.

They accused the administration of unnecessarily delaying the trial. They, however, called off their stir when the ADM assured them of immediate action.

Sources said, in July 2007, Maoist killed three villagers in Ranigola, accusing them of being police informers. Police then arrested nine villagers, suspecting them of being Maoists and remanded them in Deogarh Jail. However, after a few
months, police shifted them to Sambalpur Jail, citing security reasons at Deogarh Jail.

"After taking them to Sambalpur, police made no attempts to bring them to court in Deogarh. We requested the police on several occasions to expedite the trial, but to no avail," a family member said.

"They were innocent. They had no connection with the Maoists or their activities. They were implicated," another member said. "I have spoken to the SP to make necessary arrangements for their appearance before the court in Deogarh. The matter will be taken up seriously," ADM (Deogarh) Bhabagrahi Sarangi said.

All the nine accused villagers are being housed at Sambalpur Circle Jail went on a fast on Thursday and refused to take food till evening, in protest against the injustice. "On our request, they took food in the evening," the superintendent of Sambalpur Circle Jail B B Dharua said.

‘Maoist violence unacceptable’

Satyen Mohapatra, Hindustan Times
Email Author
New Delhi, November 13, 2009
First Published: 00:25 IST(13/11/2009)
Last Updated: 00:26 IST(13/11/2009)

The poor who the Naxalites claim to represent, have genuine concerns on land acquisition, mining, structure of governance and bureaucracy, Home Minister P. Chidambaram said.

If the poor feel existing structures of governance are anti- poor, the government is obliged to revisit them to make it proper, the home minister said.

But violence, he made clear, was unacceptable.

“We reject armed liberation struggle. We understand they claim to represent the poor but we cannot accept violence,” he said.

Chidambaram — who called Naxalism a “solvable” problem — said the Centre was taking state governments on board and helping them take counter insurgency measures.

One-third of the 620-odd districts in India are affected by Naxalism.

Referring to 26/11, he said, our capacity to deal with terror strike is much greater today than a year ago. “Should there be another attack our response will be swift and decisive,”he added.

He said we must not even try to stop anyone to go and work in a foreign country but create a climate that encourages “seamless” move from India to a foreign country and back.

“If a person of 25 is interested in going to say US and work there for 20 years and at 45 wants to come back and work in India, we should let him go and come back, like many doctors are doing today.”

The minister was speaking at the launch of the Bloomberg-UTV partnership in New Delhi.

Abducted RJD candidate returns unharmed

Latehar (Jharkhand), Nov 13 (PTI) RJD candidate Ramchandra Singh, who was abducted by suspected Naxalites in Latehar district of the poll-bound Jharkhand, today returned unharmed, police said here.

He returned to the Latehar police station along with his aide, and was closeted with DIG Shashinath Jha.

Singh along with his aide and some supporters was abducted last night by suspected Naxalites while returning from a function in Dhanukua village.

The abductors let off five of his supporters midway, but took away Singh and one of his aides with them.

The reason behind the abduction was yet to be known.

Singh was an RJD MLA from Maneka constituency since 2005 till its dissolution on November 1. He has been re-nominated from the seat for the forthcoming assembly polls in the state.

CPI(ML) condemns Centre's offensive against Naxals

Bhopal, Nov 12 (PTI) The CPI(ML) today said the Centre's offensive against Naxals in different parts of the country is an attempt to crush people's uprising against corrupt system.

"The Centre has launched an offensive against mass uprising targetting the corrupt system in different parts of country in the name of Maoists bogey," CPI(ML) newly-elected general secretary K M Ramachandran told reporters at the concluding day of the five-day party conference.

A resolution for the formation of an international forum to strengthen the communist movement was also passed at the conference, he said.

The party will soon launch a mass movement against price hike of essential commodities, Ramachandran said, adding that they will also oppose any foreign investments in the country.

He said that the Centre should stop "equating Maoists" with the people of Naxalbari movement as it was a people's uprising against corrupt system

Naxals kidnap Jharkhand MLA

By: Agencies Date: 2009-11-13 Place: Ranchi

Naxals struck again last night. This time they kidnapped the RJD candidate from Maneka constituency in the poll-bound Jharkhand.

Ramchandra Singh and his aides were reportedly kidnapped by Maoists from neighbouring Chhattisgarh.

Singh and his supporters were returning home after a function when they were kidnapped.

"Singh was kidnapped from the Latehar district. And there is also information that they have been let off. The police are trying to establish contact with him," said IG of Police Rezi Dung Dung.

Singh represented the Man-eka constituency in the dissolved state assembly and has been re-nominated from the seat for the forthcoming polls.

Anti-Naxal ops only after Jharkhand polls

Shishir Gupta Posted online: Thursday , Nov 12, 2009 at 0329 hrs

New Delhi : The much-awaited anti-Naxalite operations in Central India are expected to be put off till after the Jharkhand Assembly elections with Chhattisgarh Director General of Police Vishwaranjan conveying his scepticism to New Delhi about the enduring capabilities of the CRPF Cobra battalions in the jungles of Dantewada.
Although Union Home Minister P Chidambaram quietly dropped in at the CRPF headquarters on Monday evening to discuss the finer points of the anti-Maoist operations with Central Task Force Commander Vijay Raman, the fact is that it would take some 18 days before the Cobra battalions complete their tactical training. It is understood that the Cobra battalions are now being trained at the Kanker jungle warfare school in north Bastar with focus on tactics and staying power in the Chhattisgarh jungles.

It was noticed that as the Cobra battalions return to base every evening, the Maoists would come back from the jungles to dominate the area. “Till the time the Cobra battalions are trained to live off the jungle like Greyhounds, the anti-Naxal operations would not be successful,” said a senior official.

Another reason for the anti-Naxalite operations being put off till after the last phase of election in Jharkhand on December 18 is the apprehension that there could be violent reprisals, especially in Jharkhand. Though the Election Commission has opted for five phased polling, the Left extremists, who are adept at moving across the state rapidly, could still create problems. Moreover, there is no consensus among state politicians about the anti-Maoists operations.

Government sources said though West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik have come out in favour of taking on the Maoist rebels, privately they are still convinced that the problem can only be sorted out through dialogue. The Congress, too, does not want to dampen its political fortunes in Jharkhand in case of collateral damage.

Orissa to seek joint anti-Maoist operation

Bhubaneswar, Nov 13 (PTI) With unabated Maoist attacks claiming seven lives, including three CRPF jawans, in a span of three days, the Orissa government today decided to seek a joint anti-Naxal operation soon in consultation with the Centre.

"Union Home Secretary G K Pillai is coming here on November 20. We will take up the matter with him and seek an early special operation against Maoists," Chief Secretary T K Mishra said after a high-level meeting chaired by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

While Maoists killed four persons in Rayagada district on November 11, they eliminated three CRPF jawans today by triggering a landmine blast in Malkangiri district.

Describing the incident as "tragic", Patnaik said the state police had already launched combing operation to apprehend those involved in the incident.

Maoists ambush CRPF convoy; 3 dead

Express News Service

First Published : 14 Nov 2009 03:51:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 14 Nov 2009 07:51:05 AM IST

BHUBANESWAR/MALKANGIRIL: Two days after they killed four villagers in Rayagada, Maoists on Friday targeted a convoy of security forces in Malkangiri where they blasted a powerful landmine killing three personnel.

A big unit of Central Reserve Police Force’s 8th Battalion was heading for its base when the blast rocked the convoy of 21 vehicles. A truck carrying the three, including a Deputy Commandant, was hit by the explosion. The rest of the unit was not affected.

The deceased are Deputy Commandant Bhupinder Singh, constable Sunil Kumar and driver Narendra Singh.

Unofficial sources said four more CRPF personnel were injured in the blast, but police said none was hurt. The incident occurred near MPV 23, about 7 km from Kalimela.

The CRPF, which is deployed in the Naxal-affected Malkangiri, has battalion headquarters at MV-79 and the company is headquartered at Koraput. Since CRPF is shifting the base, the battalion was heading out too, said IG (Operations) Sanjib Marik.

The Red radicals are believed to have triggered the landmine using a remote control device along Motu-Kalimela-Malkangiri main road when the truck moved past the stretch. The intensity of the blast was so severe that the vehicle was blown up to a height of 25 feet and was mangled, an eyewitness said.What was baffling, however, was that the region has witnessed such attacks on security parties in the past. Given the guerilla warfare strategy of targeting convoys which takes maximum hit, the movement by CRPF appeared fraught with risk. A mine protected vehicle (MPV) was blown up by the Maoists in July last year killing 17 SoG men in the district.

“Such movement precedes road opening parties clearing most vantage points. The security forces claimed they stuck to the standard procedure which also raises questions about its efficacy,’’ a senior police officer said.

This is the third Maoist violence in the district in the last one month. A few days back, the rebels had set ablaze Essar Steel guesthouse at Chitrakonda and blown up a culvert near Telrai under Kalimela police limits. Kalimela, Motu and MV-79 have turned into a battlefield where both the police and Maoists have continuously engaged each other as tribals are badly caught in the crossfire.

Hold unconditional talks with Maoists: Ramadoss to Centre

PTI 13 November 2009, 04:07pm IST

CHENNAI: PMK leader S Ramadoss on Friday said "faulty" land policy followed by Centre and state governments resulted in the spread of naxalism and
asked the Centre to invite top Maoist leaders for unconditional talks.

He told reporters in Chennai that though he despised the armed struggle by the Maoists, the naxals "intentions and reasons are just."

Instead of using force to crush them, Centre should invite top Maoist leaders for unconditional talks, "as they have not come from any other country," he said.

He criticised the land policy of the Centre and some state governments, stating that they favoured affluent industrialists.

Centre and some state governments, in the name of industrialisation and development, were driving out tribals from lands they were dependent on for generations, only to give them to the industrialists, he said.

"The bureaucrats and politicians have forgotten the innocent tribals and landless farmers. The root cause of naxalism is such a land policy as the Maoists fight against the exploitation of these sections of the society," he said.

To solve the naxal menace as well as work for the welfare of the tribals and others, the government must give the land to those who are dependent on it, besides measures like free compulsory school education for tribal students.

On the allegations of land-grabbing against Karnataka High Court Chief Justice P D Dinakaran, which has affected his elevation to the Supreme Court, Ramadoss said since Justice Dinakaran was a Dalit, only another Dalit judge should be elevated to the apex court in the event of him not being promoted.

Links between scam money in Koda case and Naxals?

New Delhi, Nov 13 (PTI) Did the ill-gotten money of former Jharkhand Chief Minister Madhu Koda and his associates allegedly involved in the Hawala and illegal investments case find its way to Naxal groups?

Questions were raised today in this regard after scrutiny of documents recovered by the Income Tax and Enforcement Directorate by Central security agencies indicated that some companies in which illegal investments were made were actually a front for the naxal groups.

It has come to light that a portion of money was regularly being transferred to these companies which was finding its way to fund activities of naxal groups operating in the mineral-rich state.

ED officials claimed they had come across documents suggesting that the former ministers had amassed huge wealth including mines, real estate firms and properties in Hong Kong, Thailand and some other countries

Rs7,300 crore roads for Naxal-hit areas

Ashutosh Kumar / DNASaturday, November 14, 2009 2:09 IST Email

New Delhi: The Union road ministry is working in tandem with the home ministry to develop road network in the naxal-infested areas.

The government has prepared a blueprint for development of 5,565km of state highways and national highways worth Rs7,300 crore over the next three years.

"The home ministry has identified the stretches to be developed and classified them in three categories on the basis of security requirement for successful development of the projects. The stretches will be categorised as those requiring no security, semi-security and heavy security," said an official close to the development.

The move is expected to benefit at least 33 districts in eight naxal-infested states. To co-ordinate the efforts, a special cell has been created in the transport ministry for left-wing affected areas.

Of the Rs7,300 crore, the government has sanctioned Rs 500 crore for 2009-10. Of this, the transport ministry has sanctioned 22 projects worth Rs 444.48 crore spanning 462 km in Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh and MP.

As per the official, at least 25 proposals spanning 938 km involving a cost of Rs1,180.83 crore are in different stages of processing. "These are for Jharkhand, Bihar, UP, MP, Orissa and Chhattisgarh."

High alert over bandh call of Maoists

TNN 13 November 2009, 10:22pm IST

VARANASI: High alert was sounded in the Naxal-affected Sonebhadra, Chandauli and Mirzapur districts in view of the call of bandh given by Maoists in
protest against killing of their zonal commander Kamlesh Chowdhary in a police encounter.

According to sources, a letter was received in Sonebhadra headquarters written by the spokesman of Maoists. Mentioning his name as Jamuna, the spokesman has given the call for Bihar, Jharkhand and Sonebhadra bandh. Claiming that Chowdhary has been killed in a fake encounter, the Maoists has given this call.

When SP Sonebhadra Pritindar Singh was contacted, he admitted that there were intelligence inputs confirming that Naxal ultras had given a call of the bandh. In view of the call, alertness has been increased in the typical terrains especially on the borders of Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. He said apart from ensuring deployment of addition police and paramilitary forces, the combing operations and patrolling had been intensified to check the possibility of entry of Maoists from neighbouring states.

SP Chandauli Laxmi Narain also intensified the efforts for strengthening security arrangements especially on the routes used by Maoists to enter the district from Bihar. Police were also busy in exchanging intelligence inputs with the SPs of the districts of bordering districts.

3 cops hurt in Naxals' landmine blast

Mazhar Ali, TNN 12 November 2009, 06:47am IST

CHANDRAPUR: Even as heavy paramilitary forces have been mobilized to tackle Naxals in Gadchiroli, the outlaws struck again on Wednesday afternoon,
setting off a landmine that left three policemen injured. The blast that was carried out near Fulbodi Gatta village under Dhanora division of Gadchiroli inflicted severe damage to the Tata Sumo in which the cops were travelling. The three cops fortunately escaped with minor injuries, police claimed.

Official sources said the three policemen were part of a police party mobilized for the area domination exercise in the jungles around Gutta police assistance centre. The trio was carrying supplies in Tata Sumo for the forces engaged in the search operations. Around 12.45 pm, the blast took place in Chichoda hilly area, some 2 km from Gutta near the road, injuring three policemen in the vehicle. The insurgents opened fire on the injured cops. However, security forces in close vicinity immediately rushed to their rescue hearing the explosion. The security forces and the Naxalites exchanged fire for around 10 minutes, after which the outlaws retreated in the jungle, cops have claimed.

"The blast took place beside the road, inflicting damage to the vehicle from one side. The driver and two others travelling in the vehicle have sustained minor injuries in the blast. The damage was minimal as the intensity of blast was low," said Deputy SP (Home), Vijay Chafle. The injured cops have been identified as driver Ramu Gawde, police constables Jitendra Vaidya and Sunil Waghmare attached to special action squad (C-60). The vehicle, however, sustained considerable damage and was brought back to Gadchiroli with the help of a crane. "Our men close to the place immediately rushed to the spot after hearing the explosion. They rescued the cops from the damaged vehicle and moved them to Gadchiroli civil hospital," said Chafle. Heavy forces were pressed into the area under the guidance of SP S Jaikumar. SDPO Balsingh Rajput is leading the intense anti-naxal operations in the area to track the absconding Naxals

Naxal combing- Police penetrate deep

By Team Mangalorean - Udupi

KARKALA, November 14, 2009: The three day intensive combing of the Naxal infested areas in four districts bordering Western Ghats concluded today with the Police chief asserting that the police and the ANF have established domination in the Naxal prone areas.

Addressing a press conference here today Additional Director General of Police Mr. A.R. Infant told that the combing was done with three purposes, firstly to attain domination of government forces, secondly to instill confidence in the people living inside the Naxal infested areas and thirdly to keep in contact with the people. Mr. Infant said all the three objectives have been achieved during the three days of combing.

Mr. Infant said nobody will be allowed to run a parallel government when there was already a democratically elected government and the law and order in force. The Naxalites or Maoists have no place in administration and neither can they try to lead the innocent tribals away from democracy he added.

Mr. Infant said the police and the ANF has put into place a highly professional group of policemen who have participated in the combing operations, these forces are trained to show no mercy against the enemies of democracy and the country be it Maoists or Naxalites.

Inspector General of Police (Western Range) Gopal Hosur speaking on the occasion stated that the combing had been taken up jointly by the police and the ANF with inputs from local people.

He said the exercise had proved that police can reach anywhere and no law breaker was safe when it comes to maintenance of law and order. He said the police are well acclimatized with the terrain of the Naxal prone areas and they can now march into the area with least difficulty. The Police have also talked to the people and assured them of their help in the hour of need. They have appealed to them to give their support the law and order machinery in their areas.

The police chiefs like A.R. Infant, Mr. Hosur, ANF chief Mr. Amrit Pal, SPs of Dakshina Kannada Dr. A.S. Rao, M.N. Nagaraj of Chikmagalur and Raman Gupta of Uttara Kannada have jointly asserted that they will not allow anti democratic forces to take control of innocent tribals.

Mr. Hosur said some people who call themselves intellectuals have been supporting the Maoists and Naxalites indirectly which was nothing but treason against democracy, in right time we will move against those who give direct and indirect support to the Maoists and Naxalites.

According to the Chief of the ANF Mr. Amrit Pal the number of Naxalites operating in the Western Ghats had decreased and sooner or later they will be wiped out of Western Ghats.

Sonebhadra encounter: Petty thief made a fortune as top Naxal, say cops

Bhupendra Pandey Posted online: Friday , Nov 13, 2009 at 0402 hrs

Kolkata : The sub-zonal Naxal commander Kamlesh Chaudhary, who was killed in an encounter with Sonebhadra police on Monday, had been a petty criminal of Chiutia area of Rohtas district in Bihar before he joined the People’s War Group in 1994. He drifted into the PWG from the world of crime, and not because of any ideological motivation, says the police.

Chaudhary (48) carried rewards of Rs 1 lakh from the Uttar Pradesh Police and Rs 50,000 from Bihar Police. As a sub-zonal commander, he was in charge of an area spread on the tri-junction of three states that included Bhabua and Rohtas in Bihar, Gadhwa in Jharkhand, and Sonebhadra and Ghazipur in UP. He was also responsible for raising funds for the organisation. His killing was the most important success of UP Police in its anti-Naxal operations in the last one decade.

The Peoples Union for Civil Liberties and the Songanga Vindhyachal Committee, which is affiliated with PWG, have alleged the Rohtas police had caught Chaudhary on November 8 along with four others. The Bihar police later handed over Kamlesh to the UP Police and they killed him in a stage-managed encounter, the two organisations have alleged.

However, Sonebhadra SP Preetinder Singh said the community policing drive, which they had initiated in tribal areas in the last two months, helped them reach Chaudhary. The tribals not only provided information about Chaudhary’s hideout in a deep jungle, but also helped the police reach there, he said.

Rohtas SP Vikas Vaibhav said Chaudhary had been an area commander of PWG active in Nauhatta, Chiutia and Rohtas areas of Bihar for three years before he shifted his base to bordering areas of UP. “By then, his name had figured in over a dozen killings, including those of policemen in Bihar,” said Vaibhav. “He later became the sub-zonal commander of the organisation and was engaged in extortion from contractors and businessmen in Bihar, Jharkhand and UP,” he added.

The Sonebhadra SP said Chaudhary used to report to the PWG zonal commander Munna Vishwakarma who is based at Kaimoor in Bihar, and coordinated his activities with other sub-zonal commanders, Ram Sajivan and Lalvrat, for executing operations in the three states. He said the Naxals mostly used UP areas as a hideout after committing crime in neighbouring states.

Virendra Kumar, a native of Chiutia township, said, “Kamlesh’s father Tapeshwari and mother were labourers and could barely earn to feed their children. He had studied only up to Class VIII. In the last one decade, the family has become one of the richest in the area. They have shifted from a thatched hutment to a two-storey building and have a tractor and two motorcycles besides over 25 bighas of farming land.”

He said Chaudhary visited his house frequently, but nobody dared inform the police. Chaudhary’s only daughter was married four years ago and he attended the wedding. His parents, elder brother, wife and elder son all live together in his native village Panduka. “They cultivate the land, and his elder son Ram Kumar became a teacher in local primary school two years ago,” Virendra said.

Chiutia police station SO N K Mishra said, “Kamlesh was arrested first in 1993 in a theft case. He was a petty criminal. Later, he disappeared from the area. His name in the police records as a Naxal first entered when he shot dead a police constable at Bhabhua crossing in Nauhatta area of Rohtas district in 1999.”

A major operation which Chaudhary executed was the blowing up of a police jeep in Nauhatta area on September 9, 2003, by using landmines, killing 12 policemen. He had issued threats to the then Chiutia SO Vijay Kumar Tudu. The SO was transferred to another police station and was on his way to join there when he died in the Naxal attack on the jeep, Mishra added.

Siyaram, station officer of Chopan in Sonebhadra, said, “Kamlesh’s youngest son Jairam is pursuing a diploma at the ITI in Dudhhi area in the district for last two years. The family has prospered from Chaudhary’s extortionist activities.”

His targets were the contractors in road construction and mining who do not mind paying to keep the work going. “These victims never lodged a complaint with the police for obvious reasons, but we know this from our surveillance,” the SO said.

PUCL activists Rajiv Yadav, who questioned the police claim that Chaudhary was killed in an encounter, and also Songanga Vindhyachal Committee (SVC) have alleged the Rohtas police had caught Chaudhary on November 8 along with four others and handed him over to the UP Police which killed him.

Yadav alleged that four others, including Motilal Kharwar of Rohtas and Kameshwar Yadav of Gadhwa in Jharkhand, were in illegal custody of the police and could also be killed in fake encounter.

SVC secretary Jamuna said their organisation was affiliated with the PWG and Chaudhary was a member of the outfit.

An inspector involved in the operation said that Naxals had a following, and also paid informers, among Cheron, Baiga, Dhungar and Gaur tribals in the villages bordering Bihar, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh.

The police had started cultivating the confidence of these tribals as part of its community policing drive. This helped the police get information about Chaudhary’s hideout. A team of the special operations group and the PAC, guided by the tribals, reached the place in a remote part of the Kanach forest in Chopan area where the alleged encounter took place, an inspector said.

The Sonebhadra SP said the welfare scheme in Naxal-affected tribal areas, promoted by the Ministry of Home Affairs, has made a major impact on the locals. Besides holding frequent health camps and sanitation drives, the police teams were identifying Class VIII pass-outs among the tribals and sending them to learn motor driving in police lines so that they could get jobs, Singh added.

From petty thief to Naxal commander

Bhupendra Pandey

Posted: Friday , Nov 13, 2009 at 0136 hrs

Kamlesh Chaudhary, the sub-zonal Naxal commander who was killed in an encounter with Sonbhadra police on Monday, had no ideological motivation for joining Left extremists and was, in fact, a petty criminal in Bihar’s Rohtas district before he joined the People’s War Group in 1994, claimed the police.

The 48-year-old was in charge of an area which spread over adjoining parts of Bihar, Jharkhand and UP and also responsible for raising funds. Rohtas SP Vikas Vaibhav said Chaudhary’s name figured in over a dozen killings, including that of Bihar Police personnel.

The People’s Union for Civil Liberties and the Songanga Vindhyachal Committee, which is know to have Naxal leanings, have alleged that Chaudhary was caught by the Rohtas police on November 8 along with four others and handed over to the UP Police, which killed him in a stage-managed encounter. However, Sonbhadra SP Preetinder Singh said the community policing drive initiated in tribal areas over the past two months led them to Chaudhary's jungle hideout.

Virendra Kumar, a native of Chiutia township, said though Kamlesh’s parents were poor labourers who could barely feed their children, the family had, over the past decade, become one of the richest in the area. “They have shifted from a thatched hut to a two-storey building and have a tractor and two motorcycles besides 25 bighas of farming land,” he claimed.

Chiutia police station SO N K Mishra said, “Kamlesh was first arrested in 1993 in a case of theft. He first entered police records as a Naxal when he shot dead a constable at Bhabhua crossing in Nauhatta area of Rohtas district in 1999.” He was also behind the September 2003 landmine blast that killed 12 policemen in Nauhatta, he added

Naxals torch road construction machine in Gaya

TNN 12 November 2009, 04:22am IST

GAYA: Nearly one dozen heavily armed naxals, said to be members of the RCC a splinter group of the former MCC, late on Tuesday night raided village
Pipra under the extremist infested Dumaria police station of the district and torched a road construction machine being used in the ongoing construction of a road linking Dumaria with the divisional head quarters.

Construction activity remained suspended on Wednesday in view of the naxal operation. The torched machine was owned by Khokhar enterprises.

Confirming the incident Sherghati SDPO Ranjan Kumar said that only partial damage has been caused to the road construction machine. Asked if any arrest has been made in this connection, the SDPO replied in the negative.

Naxal, terror allowance fails to impress cops

Sabyasachi Bandopadhyay

Posted: Saturday , Nov 14, 2009 at 0357 hrs

The West Bengal Police Association is up in arms against the Left Front government over the way it is providing risk allowance to policemen combating terrorism in the state.

In an order circulated on October 28, the state government had said that it would provide risk allowance to police personnel belonging to two categories — policemen of Special Task Force of Kolkata police, which has been raised to fight terrorist violence, and those posted at 21 police stations in the Left Wing Extremism (LWE) affected three districts of West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia.

The allowance, to be effective from October, will be an additional 30 per cent of the basic pay.

“What about police stations like Sankrail where two officers were killed by the Maoists or Nayagram, which is surrounded by jungles? Several police stations, which are vulnerable, have been left out,” Bijitaswa Raut, the association’s general secretary, told The Indian Express.

“We have problems with the amount also,” he added.

On November 18, Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee will chair the meeting of Joint Consultative Committee to discuss various welfare measures, including medical facilities, insurance cover housing and others for the police force.

“Look at the consultative committee. It is supposed to be held every year but for the past five years no meeting was held. It’s so ridiculous,” said Raut.

The state government is also planning to increase the ex-gratia amount paid to the families of those who are killed in terrorist violence from Rs 3 lakh to Rs 5 lakh

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Maoists make hay, Home Ministry remains confused

Despite identifying Maoists as the greatest threat to the national security, the Home Ministry appears to be confused. Observers say such confusion will only help the rebels to intensify their depredations.

CJ: Rupam Banerjee Wed, Nov 11, 2009

PRIME MINISTER Manmohan Singh continues to describe the Maoists, as the greatest threat to the internal security and his Home Ministry carries on with confusing statements but the much-publicised strong actions against rebels remains elusive.

“Either there is a lack of proper coordination in the UPA or Home Minister P Chidambaram is bowing down to the pressures of the pro-Maoists elements in the cabinet enabling the rebels to virtually dictate the terms,” observers feel.

“Over the past few months, the Home Ministry has virtually made a 180 degree turn from a comprehensive armed action under the supervision of the senior military official to talks with the rebels without even surrender of arms. This has not only cast a doubt over the intention of the UPA government but also allowed the Maoists to go ahead with their depredations killing security men and eliminating political opponents,” they pointed out.

The Maoists have paid little respect to the UPA Government’s call for abjuring violence by not only killing at least eight people including four security men, abducting two police sweepers and blowing up three schools in the past few days but also demanding an apology from the Prime Minister for armed actions against the rebels.

“Talks are always a ploy of the Maoists to regroup themselves to carry on further depredations. It happened in Andhra Pradesh during former Chief Minister Y Rajasekhara Reddy’s talks with the Maoists. The rebels even came with arms and ammunition to participate in the talks. Obviously the talks did not succeed. The Maoists are bloody murders and they should effectively countered before any dialogue is initiated,” the observers say.

They say the Home Ministry is fully aware of the fact that the Maoists have been receiving helps, both monetary and arms, from both inside the country and abroad. Home Ministry officials have even indicated that the Maoists may get arms from China, one of the biggest contributors to the clandestine arms market. But the Ministry preferred to wait and watch without taking any comprehensive measure to quell the rebels.

“The confusing attitude of the Home Ministry gives credence to the allegations that the UPA is not sincere in tackling the Maoists’ threat since the rebels are very much active mostly in the opposition ruled states,” the observers say.

They also expressed wonder as to how secret information are passed on to the rebels and claimed that the Maoists were successful in planting their sources within the Home Ministry. “It was reported that 40 per cent of the students passing out from a Delhi University had allegiance to the Maoists and some of them might work for the rebels even after joining various departments of the Central Government,” they pointed out.

The observers referred to the Maoist upsurge in West Bengal and said some opposition parties had been utilizing the rebels like the Congress had used the Naxalite elements against the left parties in the early 70s. “But the Trina-Maos appear to be more dangerous than the Congsals as they have more firepower with sophisticated assault rifles, pistols and explosive devices,” they warned.

Whatever the case may be one thing is very clear that if the menace is not tackled immediately the State will suffer immensely and its growth will be further retarded.

Now, Maoists kill four and injure another in Rayagada

Rayagada (Orissa), Nov 11 (PTI) Striking in a big way, armed Maoists killed four persons and critically injured another in Orissa's Rayagada district suspecting them to be police informers, police sources said today.

Around 50 ultras armed with guns, axes and other sharp weapons struck in village Pandrotala in Mukundpur area, about 50 km from here last mid-night, killing three persons and causing injuries to two others, they said.

The victims were called out of their houses and attacked by the red rebels who opened fire and also used sharp edged weapons, they said.

One of the injured, admitted to the district headquarter hospital here, succumbed to injuries later, while the condition of one person undergoing treatment continued to be serious, hospital sources said.

Students' breather: Security forces vacate 28 schools in Jharkhand

2009-11-11 08:50:00
Last Updated: 2009-11-11 10:04:51

Ranchi: More than 10,000 students in districts ravaged by Maoist insurgency in Jharkhand can now go back to their class rooms with security forces vacating 28 of the 43 schools in the areas.

The security forces had set up camps in the schools to battle the red terror. Eighteen districts are affected by Maoist violence in the state, according to official records.

In response to a fresh Jharkhand High Court order of September 16, 2009, in public interest litigation, the state government and the Jharkhand police said it had vacated "28 of the 43 schools it had occupied in the Naxal-infested districts of the state and the process to vacate 13 more schools was under way".

In their Sep 16 ruling, the bench consisting of Justice M.Y. Iqbal and Justice D.K. Sinha said the "security forces had to vacate the remaining schools as early as possible".

When the case was filed in the Jharkhand High Court last year, the court had set a deadline of six months for security forces to relocate from schools.

"The September 2009 order is a follow-up to a court ruling last year where the security forces were told that they had to vacate the school in six months - by the second week of January 2009. But we pleaded with the court to know the status of the case and how many schools the security forces had vacated," lawyer Santosh Tiwari, who filed the case of behalf of the People's Union of Civil Liberties (PUCL), said.

Most of the schools are located in the tribal areas, Tiwari said. Top-viewed galleries

He alleged that while police were claiming that schools were being vacated, the Central Reserve Police Force were "at the same time taking over new schools".

"It is difficult to remove the CRPF camps from schools because of the forthcoming assembly elections," petitioner Shashi Bhushan Pathak, general secretary of PUCL, Jharkhand, said.

Jharkhand state president of PUCL Subrato Bhattacharjee told IANS that Human Rights Watch, a US-based rights watchdog, visited Jharkhand last year to survey the state of education in the insurgency-hit districts. It will release a "document in December on how presence of security forces in schools in the state has taken a toll on education in Jharkhand".

The PUCL had filed an application under the Right to Information Act last year to "ascertain the number of schools where security forces and police had set up temporary outposts".

Nearly 25 percent of the students in the 43 schools occupied by the CRPF are tribal and backward caste girls, Pathak said. Many of the schools do not have permanent teachers and the dropout rate is high among the tribal children, he said.

However, Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Raj Kumar Mallick, who filed a counter affidavit on behalf of the state government and police, countered the PUCL charge that education had been affected in these schools.

"In most of these schools, education had not been affected and regular classes were being held," the counter affidavit said.

The police said the security forces occupied only a portion of the school.

"The process of constructing several (alternative) structures for security forces in some of the villages has already begun," the counter affidavit said.

Maoist dump unearthed

TNN 10 November 2009, 04:17am IST

VIZIANAGARAM: The Vizianagaram district police unearthed a Maoist dump during combing operations in Kurupam mandal in the early hours of Monday. A huge quantity of detonators, weapons, first-aid kits and fuse wire were recovered from Chaparayiguda village in Neelakantapuram police station jurisdiction
A 50-kg aluminum container was unearthed. Apart from 347 detonators, two countrymade grenades, an SBBL weapon and a DBBL weapon, 21 electrical switches, six battery cells and fuse wire, besides first-aid kits were recovered. Police suspect that the dump could belong to Nagavali area committee, which is active in the Agency area.

Vasectomies, violence inside India's Maoist camps

By Rupam Jain Nair (AFP) – 1 day ago

JAGDALPUR, India — A quick exchange of guns and a pledge to undertake a vasectomy is customary for India's Maoist "comrades" when they wed in their isolated forest hideouts.

Some 10,000-20,000 heavily armed rebels are believed to be hiding out in India's forests following a revolutionary communist ideology that paints the state and landowners as the enemies of the people.

"This is how I got married," says 36-year-old Ramesh Podiyani, a surrendered Maoist commander who fought for more than two decades in Chhattisgarh, a central state at the heart of India's "Red Corridor."

The vasectomy, he explained, was because children could weaken a fighter emotionally, distracting him from the cause of waging class war and destroying capitalism.

"Comrades" undergo the surgery in private clinics or with sympathetic doctors, avoiding government hospitals where they might be detected.

Podiyani, who now works for a private company, grew up in a Maoist training camp from the age seven where, instead of going to school, he was trained with bows and arrows, then with guns and landmines.

"I killed several people, but I'm not sorry. It was my duty to kill as a comrade," he told AFP, sitting inside a police conference room in the town of Jagdalpur, 400 kilometres (250 miles) from Chhattisgarh state capital Raipur.

Podiyani and his wife served two years in prison after they surrendered to police and are now waiting for a promised government job and a house.

Most of the recruits who end up as Maoist fighters are from India's marginalised tribal groups. Some are forcibly enlisted, others join by choice, attracted by the fight for the poor and justice.

"I was excited when I joined the Maoists. They gifted me a uniform and leather boots," Podiyani says, adding that he was enlisted after his parents fled the village when the recruitment drive began.

Ratha Werna, a former Maoist soldier now training in a special police camp in Jagdalpur, is also prepared to speak openly about life in an organisation that is challenging the authority of the government in 20 of India's 29 states.

The strength of the decades-long insurgency has finally prompted the government to launch a major offensive, with thousands of police and paramilitary forces set to surge into the rebel strongholds.

"We thought the Maoists were the government and they are good because they were working for us," says Werna, who was expelled by the Maoists after he failed to rob a bank in Raipur and is now a police de-miner.

Robbing banks, killing landlords, attacking police stations and holding up trains are regular activities for the guerrillas, who work in a highly structured organisation topped by former teacher Mupalla Laxman Rao, better known as Ganapathi.

Inside the Maoist camps, there are strict rules forbidding corruption, lies and adultery and leaders keep a close eye on the conduct of every cadre, four former rebels told AFP in a series of interviews.

All disputes between the camp members are decided within 24 hours by the camp leader, with punishments ranging from demotion, detention to physical labour.

Religion and superstition is also forbidden.

"I was not allowed to worship the trees and the birds in the camp," said 32-year-old Dhuna, a former rebel and tribal villager from a Maoist-dominated area of the densely forested, impoverished state.

"From humble forest dwellers we were forced to become brutal soldiers."

Women generally cook, collect wood and act as soldiers. Some have been known to abandon their children on state highways in order to better serve the cause, Kathihar Ras, a worker in a local orphanage, told AFP.

Men's tasks include patrolling, organising propaganda exercises and collecting protection money from wealthy business leaders to guarantee their safety.

The Maoist propaganda machine -- an essential part of the movement that the government is countering with its own communications efforts -- uses printing presses, hired translators and professional writers.

"India is nothing but a semi-colonial and semi-feudal state under neo-colonial form of indirect rule, exploitation and control," is one idea contained in a strategy manual obtained by AFP.

Podiyani remembers some of the songs used during the regular workshops in which fellow fighters were taught about strategy and tactics for a revolution to topple the democratic government by 2060.

This target date is mentioned in dozens of training manuals seized by the police in raids over the last seven years.

One song, he recalls, went as follows:

"These villages and land are ours.

Why are the rich here?

Let us all kill them, stab them and burn them."

Human rights activist Durge Rao says his research shows that the Maoists depend on young boys for the bulk of their recruits.

"The tribal boys are the fodder. They are enrolled and brainwashed, age being no barrier to the start of a revolutionary life," she said.

A recent arrest in New Delhi, however, shows that the movement might also draw support from unlikely quarters.

In September, police arrested Kobad Ghandy, whom they allege is a top Maoist leader despite his upper-class background and elite education in India's top-class Doon school and then in London where he studied accountancy.

"Many rich, educated people in India are committed to the Maoist movement. It is difficult to pluck them (single them out)," said Chhattisgarh's top police officer Vishwa Ranjan.

For Podiyani and his wife, the brutality of the camps eventually turned them away from the movement. But they are clearly having trouble adapting to life without the direction given by the daily struggle against the state and capitalism.

"We still think like Maoists. It has been a challenge for us to settle in a city and abide by the government's rules," he says.

Copyright © 2009 AFP. All rights reserved. More »

Women Maoists led attack on EFR jawans

Caesar Mandal & Sukumar Mahato, TNN 10 November 2009, 06:55am IST

GIDHNI (WEST MIDNAPORE): The attack on paramilitary jawans at Gidhni on Sunday evening was led by two women — just like the assault on Sankrail
police station. Police say one of them could be Tara, a Lalgarh native and Maoist leader Bikash’s fiancĂ©e. The EFR jawans did not suspect the women, disguised as villagers, which allowed the attackers to get to point-blank range.

Locals told police on Monday that two young women in salwar-kameez were commanding the rebels, and they are the ones who opened the attack by shooting two jawans in the head. The forces never expected an attack in a crowded bazaar, and not from women. Stunned by this, the security forces say they have no option but to counterattack with guerrilla tactics.

Eyewitnesses have given police a detailed description of the attack. No one had spotted the Maoists in the crowd, neither locals, nor the EFR. With AK assault rifles and 9mm pistols hidden under shawls and chadars, the squad mingled with evening shoppers. Led by the two women, the team of four sauntered close to four jawans. Without warning, they whipped out guns and fired.

A back-up group of about eight Maoists sprinted in to pick up the rifles and ammunition of the fallen jawans. The four attackers kept firing as the remaining EFR jawans and forces from the Gidhni camp retaliated. “They seemed to be very well trained. Using minimum firepower, they completed their operation. They shot at point-blank range, giving police no chance to resist,” said a senior police officer.

Intelligence agencies claim that the two women are from Lalgarh. “One of them is probably Tara. But we have no clue about the other, who is in her mid-twenties,” said an official.

Six former Maoists to fight Jharkhand assembly polls

11 Nov 2009, 1652 hrs IST, IANS

RANCHI: Six former Maoist rebels have decided to shun violence and join the political mainstream by contesting the coming Jharkhand assembly

Four rebels have been given ticket by the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) and one each by Rashtriya Janata Dal (Rashtriya Janata Dal) and All Jharkhand Students Union (AJSU).

The four JMM nominees are Masih Charan, Polush Surin, Satish Kumar and Yugal Pal from Khuti, Torpa, Daltanganj and Vishrampur seats, respectively.

The AJSU has given ticket to Kuldeep Ganju for the Simeria assembly seat and the RJD has nominated Ranjan Yadav in the Paki assembly constituency.

The five-phased polls to the Jharkhand assembly will be held Nov 25-Dec 18 and the counting takes place Dec 23.

Charan, Polush and Yugal Pal are contesting from jail. Satish Kumar, Ganju and Yadav are presently out on bail.

All six rebels face serious criminal charges like murder and attacking police teams.

Charan, Polush and Satish were with the People's Liberation Front of India (PLFI) while the rest were Communist Party of India-Maoist members.

"The central and state government want Maoists to join the mainstream of society and repose their faith in the democratic system. What is wrong if someone is shunning violence and joining the democratic system," Supriyo Bhattacharya, a senior JMM leader, told media.

Maoists kill four in Rayagada

Rayagada (Orissa), Nov 11 (PTI) Striking in a big way, armed Maoists killed four persons and critically injured another in Orissa's Rayagada district suspecting them to be police informers, police sources said today.

Around 50 ultras armed with guns, axes and other sharp weapons struck in village Pandrotala in Mukundpur area, about 50 km from here last mid-night, killing three persons and causing injuries to two others, they said.

The victims were called out of their houses and attacked by the red rebels who opened fire and also used sharp edged weapons, they said.

One of the injured, admitted to the district headquarter hospital here, succumbed to injuries later, while the condition of one person undergoing treatment continued to be serious, hospital sources said.

Not Chinese government but smugglers selling arms to Maoists: India

IANS 10 November 2009, 06:57pm IST

NEW DELHI: The union home ministry Tuesday denied that its official had said that the Chinese government was supplying arms to Indian Maoists and
clarified that he meant the weapons were being supplied by smugglers from that country.

Union home secretary GK Pillai was "not quoted correctly", a press statement from the ministry said.

Speaking to reporters here Sunday, Pillai had said "Chinese are large suppliers of small arms and I am sure the Maoists get it from them", without elaborating whether the rebels were getting arms from Chinese smugglers or official agencies.

"In this connection, it is clarified that the secretary while speaking to newsmen here last Sunday simply conveyed that small arms made in China had been illegally brought by arms smugglers to India and supplied to Maoist groups.

"This observation was based on facts. At no point did the secretary say that the Chinese government was involved in the supply of arms to Maoists," the statement said.

Enemy lines blurred in India's fight with Maoists

By Rupam Jain Nair (AFP) – 10 hours ago

RAIPUR, India — Police fighting a Maoist insurgency in the forests of eastern India face a rebel force that knows the terrain far better and is willing to use the local civilian population as camouflage.

As those states most affected by the Maoists prepare a concerted offensive against the left-wing guerrillas, fears have grown for the safety of innocent villagers who may get caught in the crossfire.

In Chhattishgarh state, which has been a Maoist stronghold for over two decades, police chief Vishwa Ranjan readily admits that sorting the Maoists from the civilians presents a major challenge.

"One of the key questions in this operation would be how the forces will identify who is a Maoist and who is not," Ranjan told AFP. "They (the Maoists) are all over the place now."

The danger the offensive poses to civilians, most of them from impoverished tribal groups, has led to calls for its cancellation.

"We feel this will be a democratic and humanitarian disaster," a group of activists and academics, including novelist Arundhati Roy, a winner of the Booker Prize, wrote in an open letter to the prime minister last month.

Human rights groups, while acknowledging India's right to engage the rebels militarily, have also raised concerns over the possibility of civilian casualties.

Ranjan believes his network of informers will help the police to accurately target their operations, but says concern for civilians places his men at a considerable disadvantage.

"Maoists can indulge in mindless violence but we cannot," he said in an interview in the Chhattishgarh state capital, Raipur.

"We are in the middle of a game of chess. Pawns will die on both sides and then the chase for the masters will begin," he added.

The armed Maoist movement, which started as a peasant uprising in 1967, has spread to 20 of India's 29 states. Its cadre strength has been variously estimated at between 10,000 and 20,000.

The main rebel groups operate out of jungle bases in the so-called "red corridor" that stretches across more than half a dozen states in eastern India.

Until now, state security forces have struggled to curb the rebels' hit-and-run attacks, citing a lack of resources and the Maoists' superior knowledge of local conditions and topography.

"The Maoists are like water. The minute you try to pressurise them, they spread all over," said Longe Kume, a senior police officer in Jagdalpur, a region dotted with rebel training camps.

The planned offensive, scheduled to begin this month with the logistical support of the central government, is aimed at inflicting a knockout blow to an insurgency that has claimed more than 600 lives so far this year.

In an effort to counter the local knowledge of the rebels, Kume said surrendered Maoists were being recruited to help paramilitary forces locate and identify their former comrades.

Some have been appointed Special Police Officers, even those with violent records.

"I was a commander in the Maoist military wing for eight years," said Dodla Kawra, 32, who was made an SPO by the Chhattishgarh police.

"I killed two government officers but after I sexually assaulted a woman comrade, the Maoists demoted me," Kawra said.

The police have always borne the brunt of Maoist violence. More than 2,800 policemen have been killed by the rebels since 2004 and 200 police stations have been attacked -- often in raids to procure guns and ammunition.

In October, the Maoists abducted and beheaded a police officer, saying it was retribution for "police repression."

The government has acknowledged that the Maoist threat cannot be eradicated by brute force alone, and that steps need to be taken to develop the regions where chronic poverty has fuelled the rebels' ability to recruit new members.

The proposed strategy is to clear the ground used as Maoist training camps and bring in developmental agencies to set up pre-fabricated schools and hospitals, as well as police stations.

"The challenge is to sanitise the villages completely before development begins. Leaving even one Maoist behind could be a big mistake," said Kume.

New Delhi says it has earmarked 1.46 billion US dollars for security and infrastructure projects in the affected regions over the next three years.

In a recent interview published in the weekly magazine Open, Maoist leader Mupalla Laxman Rao, better known as Ganapathi, vowed to unleash a "tornado" of violence if the government goes ahead with its offensive.

But Chhattishgarh police chief Ranjan was confident that a concerted operation, with the political will to see it through, would eventually prove decisive.

"Let them rise like a tornado. In the final stage of this chess game, Indian forces will win," he said.

Copyright © 2009 AFP. All rights reserved. More »

7 Maoists killed near AP border

Express News Service

First Published : 11 Nov 2009 05:15:00 AM ISTLast Updated :

BHADRACHALAM: Seven Maoists were killed on Tuesday in an exchange of fire with the police at Kistapuram forest region in Chhattisgarh, 10 km from the Andhra border.

According to information reaching here, the Andhra and Chhattisgarh police, who were searching the area as part of Operation Green Hunt, received intelligence inputs that the Maoists were assembling at a certain location in the forest.

When the police surrounded the Naxalites, the latter opened fire in an attempt to break free. In the gunbattle that followed, seven Maoists were killed. The police seized two SLRs, three 303 rifles and land mines from the place

Truce is no substitute to end Naxalism

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

By Prakash Nanda

The frontiers between India and China, despite small disturbances of late, remain at peace. India’s borders and the line of actual control with Pakistan have not witnessed any exchange of fire for a long time. Yet the Indian state is engaged in an internal war that it is refusing to fight with full force.

The enemy is an armed group that believes in the political philosophy of Mao Zedong. The members were not, until recently, exactly a monolithic outfit but its cadres, variously known as Naxalites or Maoists, maintained a loose network. Now they have formed a much more cohesive organization.

The group’s presence is seen in nearly 40 percent of India’s landmass. Although it has been waging war against the state for the past 10 years or so, the fight has intensified in recent months. The group claims to be revolutionary, does not believe in parliamentary

democracy, aims at capturing power through violence and maintains fraternal links with similar groups in neighboring countries.

In the past five years these fighters have killed more than 6,000 people, including police officers. This casualty figure, it may be noted, is much higher than the number of soldiers India has lost in three wars against Pakistan.

They are active across 220 of India’s 602 districts, spanning 15 states. They are especially concentrated in an area known as the “red corridor,” where they control 92,000 square kilometers of landmass stretching from Karnataka state in the south to the border with Nepal in the north.

With a force of 15,000 armed cadres, they control an estimated one- fifth of India's forests. They are also believed to have 50,000 underground activists. Around 1,00,000 people, including the intelligentsia, are associated with various front organizations in

different parts of the country.

They have hijacked super-fast trains, imposed regular “bandh’s” – a form of protest by political activists that bring social and business life to a complete halt – in the states of Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal. They have shot dead innocent civilians and officials, set ablaze railway stations, taken hostages, torched vehicles, destroyed school buildings and dismantled government offices responsible for development-related work.

Two months ago they beheaded, Taliban style, police officials in the states of Jharkhand and Maharashtra, whom they had taken as hostages to force the government to release some of their detained comrades.

Last month they forced the government in West Bengal to release their activists from jail in exchange for a police inspector held hostage.

Incidentally, while releasing the inspector they ensured that he put on a shirt displaying the sign “prisoner of war” to highlight that the Maoists are “at war” with India.

It is no surprise that for the past three years Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said, “The Naxalites pose the gravest threat to the internal security of the country.”

But how is Singh dealing with the issue? Therein lies the confusion. Singh – like many typical advocates of human rights in India for whom the terrorists, not their victims, have constitutionally guaranteed rights although they do not believe in the Constitution – is not

convinced that the Maoists are the enemy of the nation. Singh has even refused to brand them as terrorists, though their activities – taking hostages, creating a sense of terror, merciless killings of civilians, destruction of public property, spreading a cult of intolerance and glorifying the use of violence to capture state power – are hallmarks of terrorist activities.

The Maoists deserve to be faced with all the force and power at the disposal of the state. But Singh invariably cites the usual factors of underdevelopment, corruption in the bureaucracy, police atrocities and exploitation of the poor and tribal peoples as contributing factors to their growing influence.

Singh prefers dialogue with the Maoists. But he seems to forget that, as seen in Kashmir and other northeast regions, people are supporting the so-called revolutionaries in the “red corridor” in eastern and central India not out of love and reverence but due to terror and fear.

Maoists and their leaders are flourishing because money, important for procuring sophisticated weapons, is no longer a problem. Most Maoist leaders have over the past two decades acquired large properties in urban areas with the money received through extortion, which, according to one estimate, yields millions of dollars. The victims are

contractors, businessmen, doctors, engineers, and even poor laborers and farmers who are forced to part with a substantial portion of their earnings.

The Maoists raise funds through extortion or by setting up parallel administrations to collect taxes in rural areas where local governments are either absent or weak. This is not all. Smuggling of contraband and wood as well as poppy cultivation also enrich their


Worse, the Maoists have strengthened their links with notorious terrorist groups outside the country, including al-Qaida. Credible intelligence reports, which have been published in India, Nepal and Bangladesh and not contested by the concerned governments, reveal how al-Qaida, through elements in the Pakistani spy agency the Inter- Services Intelligence, is patronizing Maoist operatives in spreading extremist Islam in South Asia under the guise of Communism.

It may be recalled that in 2001 Maoist groups in India formed the Coordination Committee of Maoist Parties and Organizations of South Asia, better known as CCOMPOSA, in secret locations in the jungles of central India. Its members are Naxalites or Maoist outfits from Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Sri Lanka.

In August 2006 CCOMPOSA held its fourth conference in Nepal. Obviously, with the Maoists emerging as the most important political force in Nepal, their fraternal counterparts in India have become more powerful. Recently, a truck loaded with more than 1,000 kilograms of explosives and a large number of detonators was apprehended in Bihar close to the Nepal border.

Coming back to the central point, the Maoists and their sympathizers cannot be contained by the state if it fights them with hands tied. The Maoists have waged a war against the country and they must be comprehensively defeated before any meaningful talks begin. Any talks with them now could at best lead to a truce. But a truce is no substitute for lasting peace.

Seized ammo meant for repeat of Jehanabad jail-break’

Amarnath Tewary | Patna

Seven Maoist guerrillas in uniform were killed in an encounter with police in Kistaram police station area of Dantewada district, about 500 km from Chhattisgarh capital Raipur on Tuesday, police said. This came on a day when the police in Bihar revealed that the Maoists were planning to attack the high security Beur jail in Patna and free some hard core ultras.

Acting on intelligence inputs, Dantewada police had fanned out in the region and encountered a group of well-armed Maoists. One police constable was injured in the incident.

Kistram is a remote area deep in the forest and the police forces rarely venture out there. “We have decided to go deep into the forest and inaccessible places and take on the Maoists, Dantewsada SP Amresh Mishra told The Pioneer on phone. The SP said it was not clear how many Naxals were involved in the operation.

“The police team was caught in an ambush by the Maoists”, Inspector General of Police RK Vij said. After the encounter, police recovered landmines, detonators, country-made pistols and two 303 rifles, he said.

Meanwhile, the police have revealed that the huge cache of explosives, arms and ammunition seized recently from Patna were meant for a repeat of the Jehanabad jail break incident to release their leaders like Ajay Kanu currently lodged in the Beur jail. They also said that a nearby police station at Gaurichak was also on the simultaneously strike range of the Maoists.

Sources said the Maoists had stacked up huge quantity of explosives, arms and ammunition in the Shaymali house of Omprakash Gupta in the Bahadurpur locality of the State capital which is close to the Beur jail and the Gaurichak police station.

Acting on an intelligence input, the police had seized about 900 kgs of explosives, chemicals and arms-ammunition within 24 hours from the State capital which had sent a shock wave in the State. The confiscated materials were enough to blow off the State capital, said a police official involved in the raid.

The Maoists had attacked Jehanabad jail on November 13, 2005 to release Ajay Kanu and some other Maoist leaders from the prison. Since then, Kanu was absconding but later he was arrested and sent to high-security Beur jail on the outskirts of the State capital.

It has also been learnt that the Maoists had planned to launch their strike either on the Jehanabad jail break anniversary on November 13 or November 17. Sources said the Maoists had even done a complete recce of their operation to attack the Beur jail.

The reports said the Maoist leaders have been found taking walk near the main gate of the jail till 10 pm whereas the prisoners are sent to their respective wards by 7 pm.

The Naxals reportedly have also planned to launch an attack on the nearby Gaurichak police station apparently to divert the attention of the police force on the strike day.

Meanwhile, alarmed with the explosive information, the administration shifted the off-route and ill-fortified Gaurichak police station to a concrete building of the local Public Health Centre on the main road of the area.

Though, the SSP, Patna said that the police station has been shifted as the decision was taken earlier for the same.

Recently, the Patna police had first seized 300 kgs of explosives with other chemicals from a Tata 407 parked on the old-bypass road of Kankerbagh and the very next day around 600 kgs of explosives along with sophisticated arms and ammunitions from a house of one Omprakash Gupta on Bhootnath road in Bahadurpur locality.

Both the places are close to the Beur jail. Police believe that the truck-load of explosives might be heading for the house of Gupta to stack up their arsenal.

Hunt on for Naxal group in Kudremukh forests

TNN 10 November 2009, 10:02pm IST

CHIKMAGALUR: The Chikmagalur, Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Shimoga police have started a massive hunt for a Naxal group suspected to be roaming in
the forests of Kudremukh hills.

According to police sources, the armed and civil police from the four districts and the anti-Naxal force have been divided into groups to scour the forests in Sringeri, Koppa, Kalasa, Udupi and Belthangady for the Naxal group.

From Chikmagalur district alone, 1,500 armed policemen have been sent for the combing operations. The groups are carrying plenty of dry fruits, bread and biscuits with them. The intense search is likely to continue for three days.
The police have started searching areas like Kerekatte, Kigga, Sirimane, Kalasa, Menasinahadya and other remote areas which Naxalites often use to take rest or shelter.

The three-day search began on the orders of DGP Ajai Kumar Singh. Singh held a meeting of all four district police officers at Karkala recently.

Bihar police seizes 30,000 live catridges, six weapons, explosives

PTI Tuesday, November 10, 2009 22:21

Patna: Bihar police personnel today seized 30,000 live catridges of point 315 bore, two AK-47 rifles, four Insas rifles and huge quantity of explosive from a house in Bokaro town in Jharkhand, ADG (headquarters) US Dutta said.

Acting on a tip-off, the state police personnel sought help from Jharkhand police and raided a house at Sector 12 of Bokaro town and recovered the firearms and explosive, Dutta told PTI here.

Special Task Force of Bihar police had on November 8 seized liquid explosive, 14 carbine-manufacturing equipment, two pistols, 7221 live catridges, 50 detonators, one box containing naxal literature, CD and casettes from a place under Kankerbagh police station in the state capital, he said. A report from Bokaro said assisted by the local police, a team from Bihar police this morning reached a house in the Bari Cooperative Colony situated in the premises of Bokaro Steel plant and started the search operation.

The Bihar police came following a tip-off that weapons and ammunition were stored in a house in Bokaro, the police said.

The seizure comes a couple of days after the police had recovered huge ammunition in neighbouring Bihar.

Two sweepers of joint forces abducted; one released

Kolkata, Nov 10 (PTI) Maoist-backed tribals allegedly kidnapped two sweepers attached to the security forces engaged in anti-naxal operations in West Midnapore district, but released one of them after a few hours.

Ramswarup Hela and Rajendra Hela were posted at the Dharampore camp. "They are not jawans, but they are part of the joint forces definitely," IG (Law and Order) Surajit Kar Purokayanstha said.

Rajendra Hela was released about 10.30 pm.

Maoist leader Kishenji told PTI over phone that they were kidnapped by 'the people' and handed over to them. "They are now our prisoners of war."

He was freed as his mother was hospitalised, Kishenji said.

"Rajendra Hela was on way to the camp as we have heard," a senior district police officer said.

However, the other is still in captivity.

Tribal influx on the rise in Khammam

P V Prasad, TNN 11 November 2009, 06:55am IST

KHAMMAM: With the central security forces along with Chhattisgarh police intensifying combing operations to flush out the Maoists ahead of the
full-scale battle, thousands of fear-stricken tribals are migrating to the border villages of Khammam district.

The migrant Gond and Gothikoya tribes from Dantewada and Narayanpur districts have set up temporary habitations in the thick forests of Bhadrachalam, Paloncha and Kothagudem Agency areas. "The tribal influx has been very high for the last one month. With pressure from the police and the local Salwa Judum activists mounting, the tribals are fleeing their native villages to reach the safer tracts of Khammam border villages," said a manager of a voluntary agency in Chintoor close to Chhattisgarh border.

Unconfirmed reports said close to 80,000-1 lakh tribals from southern Chhattisgarh have migrated in the recent past. Though some voluntary organisations are providing shelter and food for the migrant families in nine habitations, thousands of tribals are still homeless. "The forest officials of Khammam district attack our makeshift dwellings in the forests asking us to vacate the forest land. With cops, Salwa Judum men targeting us on one side and Maoists on the other, we are caught in a no man's land," Madakam Bira, a tribal from Kunta area, said.

Sources said though the local tribes help the migrant families, the fear of backlash from Maoists, Salwa Judum activists and the cops is constant. "Their plight is pitiable since Maoists take them away on the ruse that they are police informers and kill them," a police official involved in anti-naxal operations along the Khammam border said.

Sources said with the activities of Salwa Judum on the rise to counter the Maoist influence, the tribes in the southern parts of Chhattisgarh have always been living on the edge. "The innocent tribes of Dantewada are caught between the devil and the deep sea and they have been facing this music since June 2005," an IPS officer said.

Dantewada district, situated in the southern tip of Chhattisgarh, shares border with Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Orissa and the people inhabiting the district are predominantly tribals - mostly Maria Gonds and Dorlas - as they account for 82 per cent of the rural population. "The irony is huge funds are allocated for anti-naxal operations than for their development. Little wonder, they flock to Khammam villages in droves in times of crisis," a revenue department official of Bhadrachalam said.

'Maoists regrouping in N Telangana'

TNN 11 November 2009, 06:50am IST

NIZAMABAD: Amidst reports that the movement of Maoists has increased by leaps and bounds in North Telangana districts, sources said nearly 70 action
team members have sneaked into the region from Chhattisgarh in the wake of the proposed Operation Green Hunt at Abujmad in Chhattisgarh and Operation Godavari in Andhra-Orissa border.

"The Maoists have strategically moved to North Telangana to shift focus from Chhattisgarh operation. But the state police is fully geared up to thwart their designs," a district police official said. In fact, the Maoists lost their hold in the district after the Manala encounter in March 2005 in which 10 extremists, including district committee secretary Ramesh, were killed in the forests of Kammarapalli mandal.

Sources said the Maoists in league with members of Janashakthi are trying to regroup in a big way and take the movement forward in Nizamabad, Karimnagar, Warangal districts. "The Maoists are visiting interior villages to meet sympathisers, while Janashakthi leaders are holding meetings with beedi workers and women group members," a source said.

It is learnt that Janashakthi north Telangana secretary Yadanna was extorting money from businessmen, contractors and others on the pretext of strengthening the party and reviving the naxal movement.

Maoist top guns on security forces’ hit list

Navin Upadhyay New Delhi

Top Maoist leaders, including Koteshwar Rao alias Kishenji, figure on the list of Naxals who would be selectively targeted by the forces during the course of the proposed offensive against the Naxals. There is a thinking within the Government that if the top Maoists could be eliminated in the first phase of the operation, the ‘demoralised’ cadre would disintegrate and the anti-Maoist operation would achieve its objective without much bloodbath and collateral damage.

Talking to The Pioneer, national coordinator of the anti-Naxal operation Vijay Raman said an intelligence-based hunt will be unleashed against the Maoist leadership and the forces will go all-out to eliminate the key Naxal commanders.

When asked if Kishenji was on the hit list, Raman said, “Why not? If he is their leader, he will surely be a target.”

As the head of the Maoist central military commission, Kishenji is known as Baswaraj, which is one of the many aliases he uses to confuse the police and intelligence agencies. Since Kishenji is the most visible face of the Maoists, his killing could be a body blow to the movement. Ganpathy, the elusive head of the Maoists, is rarely spotted.
Raman, who is Additional Director-General of the CRPF, said the forces would not waste their bullets on the Maoists foot soldiers but go for the ‘head’. “If the head is hit, the body will collapse. Our operation will be precise, intelligence-based and we will go for the top guns,” he said.

The top cop — who has the onerous task of coordinating between the State Director General of Police and the paramilitary forces — is conscious of the fact that Maoists have great propaganda machinery and they will try to highlight each of their ‘casualties’ as a case of killing of ‘innocents’.

To that end, he is approaching the whole anti-Maoist operation with great caution by laying emphasis on intelligence gathering. “We don’t subscribe to violence. Each death affects at least 40 persons, including family members and others. Bullets will be used only when there is no way out,” he said.

Sources in the Home Ministry said the three districts — Kanker and Rajnandgaon in Chhattisgarh, and Gadchiroli in Maharashtra — have been identified to start the operation in the first phase. In these districts, the Maoists inflicted major casualty on the forces in the recent past, and the jawans are seething for revenge.

Source said there will be no formal announcement of the launch of the operation and claimed that work on the ground has already begun. Scores of battalions of paramilitary forces have already landed in these three districts and they are being familiarised about topography and Maoist tactics. Sources said the Maharashtra Government has before the launch of the operation since the extremists have major presence in the region.urged the Home Ministry to send two additional battalions of paramilitary forces

Officials in the know of the anti-Maoist strategy told The Pioneer that the Government was getting ready to wage a psychological warfare against the Naxals to bring them across the negotiation table. “It is going to be a carrot-and-stick approach. Our experiences in Jammu & Kashmir and North-East have shown that without major crackdown no militant outfits is ready to talk,” he said.

“It is as much a psychological war as physical offensive. If the Maoist leadership gets convinced that come what may, we will not relent, they will succumb and their cadre will start disintegrating,” an official said.

With six States and more dozens of districts in serious grip of the Maoist menace, the Centre would desperately hope that their strategy bring desired results. As things stand, the preparatory exercise to unleash the war in three districts alone has taken months, and if other districts have to be covered, it could be a long haul, source said.

Also, States like Odisha are not prepared to take part in the offensive because their policemen are not trained, and Jharkhand is headed for Assembly election. “Both Jharkhand and Odisha are critical States and we are hoping the party which comes to power in Jharkhand will cooperate fully in the anti-Naxal operation,” said an official, confirming that Odisha was reluctant, as of now, and has demanded major deployment of additional paramilitary forces.

Sources said the Government is also looking at the proposed offensive in Kanker, Rajnandgaon and Gidchiorili as an experiment of sorts because it involved joint operation between the paramilitary forces and local police. The forces will work under direct control of respective DGPs and Raman’s task will be limited to coordination of the operation between different States.

“Depending on the success of the operation in the three districts, we will proceed further,” said an official, adding, “Those expecting bloodbath and large-scale killing by the forces will be disappointed. We fully understand the delicate nature of the problem and the use of force will be minimum. Area domination will be primary task of the forces in these three districts where they will destroy hideouts and arm-manufacturing units and prepare the ground of ushering in development.”

Meanwhile, top Maoist leader Kishenji said on Tuesday they were ready for a ceasefire with the Government, but they will not accept Centre's demand to abjure violence.

Reacting to Home Secretary GK Pillai's statement that there was a possibility of a dialogue with Maoists if they abjured violence, Kishenji told PTI over phone, "Abjuring violence is not on our agenda. We believe in armed struggle."

Top-down strategy

* Top Maoist leaders, including Koteshwar Rao alias Kishenji, are prime targets of security forces

* Govt hopes if senior leaders are eliminated first, the demoralised cadre would disintegrate

* The Maoists have great propaganda machinery and they will try to highlight each of their casualties as a case of killing of ‘innocents’

* Forces to lay more emphasis on intelligence gathering

* Three districts - Kanker and Rajnandgaon in Chhattisgarh, and Gadchiroli in Maharashtra -- have been identified to start the operation

Maoist arrested

Express News Service

First Published : 11 Nov 2009 09:26:18 AM ISTLast Updated : 11 Nov 2009 09:32:15 AM IST

KEONJHAR: A Hardcore Maoist was arrested from Mirigimundi near Khaliamenta under Ghasipura police limits by Keonjhar police recently. The Maoist, Purna Murmu, was wanted by police for his involvement in several cases in different police stations, said Keonjhar SP Ashit Kumar Panigrahi.

Twenty cases have been lodged against Purna in Ghasipura, Harichandanpur and Daitari police stations. While Ghasipura police station has 15 cases registered against him, three cases have been filed with Harichandanpur police and two were registered at Daitari police station, the SP said. Purna was the main accused in Salku Hembram murder case in Salku Dihi village under Ghasipura police limits. He had also burnt three trucks of a contractor Laxmidhar Mishra.

He is the coordinator of the union of CPI Maoist and CPI Janashakti, particularly in Keonjhar district. Purna was closely associated with Anna Reddy and Andhra-based Naxal leader Sushil alias Basanta. A modern country-made revolver and five live bullets were seized from him.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Task Force Report on National Security & Terrorism

Click here to download

Maoists blow up two schools in Jharkhand

PTI 10 November 2009, 11:31am IST

RANCHI: Maoist guerrillas blew up two school buildings in Jharkhand's Latehar district to prevent security forces from using them as make-shift
camps during the upcoming assembly polls, police said Tuesday.

Two schools in Banbirua and Kona villages in Latehar, some 145 km from here, were blasted by Maoists late Monday night using detonators and explosives, a police official said.

The rebels left behind pamphlets saying the buildings had been blown up to prevent the security forces from using them as make-shift camps during the elections. The five-phase assembly poll begins Nov 25. The votes will be counted Dec 23.

On Nov 6, Maoists had blown up a school in Asona village of Chatra district. The Leftist guerrillas have blown up over 30 school buildings in the state in the last five years.

CPI(M) leader shot at by suspected Maoists

Raktima Bose

Jagannath Mahato, the CPI(M) local leader of Changsole village in Paschim Medinipur district of West Bengal, who was critically injured after being shot at by Maoist on Monday.
A day after four jawans of the Eastern Frontier Rifles (EFR) were shot dead by a group of Maoists in the Lalgarh region of West Bengal’s Paschim Medinipur district, violence involving the extremists continued unabated on Monday.

Jagannath Mahato, a local Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader and the former pradhan of the Garmal gram panchayat, was shot at by suspected Maoists while he was on his way home in the Salboni area. His condition was reported to be “critical,” District Superintendent of Police Manoj Kumar Verma said.

Gunbattles raged between militants and security forces at three other places, besides Salboni. Gidhni, where the four EFR jawans were killed, remained tensed. The shops remained closed and the roads deserted.

“Security personnel have been asked to remain alert and follow the guidelines of the standard operation procedure properly for their safety,” Mr. Verma told The Hindu over the telephone.

Suspected Maoists opened fire on a group of security personnel at Dumurpota village while the latter was out on a combing operation. The security forces retaliated and the ensuing gunbattle lasted for about two hours, said Mr. Verma.

Similar exchange of fire was also reported from two other locations in the Kotwali and the Dharampur areas during the day, following which more than 20 persons were picked up by the police from adjacent villages for interrogation.

Meanwhile, Atindranath Dutta, officer-in-charge of the Sankrail thana in the district, who was abducted by the Maoists as a “prisoner-of-war” on October 20 and released following high-drama, resumed duty at the Midnapore headquarters on Monday.

Mr. Dutta had been on leave since his release and failed to join duty even after two notices by the district police directing him to do so.

Confirming this, Mr. Verma said Mr. Dutta will stay in the police lines in Midnapore for a while before any job is “identified” for him.

SDO gheraoed

In another incident, a group of around 100 women supporters of the Maoist-backed Police Santrash Birodhi Janasadharaner Committee (PSBJC) gheraoed the office of Jhargram Sub-Divisional Officer (SDO) demanding the release of 17 men who were arrested few days ago following intelligence reports that they had Maoist links.

Jhargram SDO S. Ullaganathan, told The Hindu over the telephone that initially the group alleged that Mansingh Mandi, one of the 17 arrested men, had been killed in custody since he could not be found at the police station.

“But on checking with the police, it was learnt that he and 16 others were produced at a court in Midnapore on the day, where 12 have already been released on bail. The women lifted the gherao following this,” Mr. Ullaganathan said.

Keywords: Maoist, CPI(M), Lalgarh

Email the Editor