Saturday, March 06, 2021

Naxals were trying to manufacture grenade launcher


Soumitra Bose | TNN | Mar 7, 2021, 05:52 IST

Nagpur: The arms manufacturing unit of the Naxals in the hilly terrain of the densely-forested Abhujmadh in Chhattisgarh, busted by the C-60 commandos on March 4, was in the process of preparing a grenade launcher which could have been a major threat to the security forces. 

Naxals’ politburo member Bhupathi alias Sonu too was present in the vicinity where the firing took place. Sources in the police department said the Naxals had continued to fire heavily, aiming at the C-60 commandos to shield their senior member.


Meanwhile, the injured C-60 jawan, who was brought from Gadchiroli to Orange City Hospital and Research Institute with a bullet wound, is said to be stable after reaching the city on Friday night. He got a surprise call from chief minister Uddhav Thackeray who waited for more than 24 hours to have a word with the injured C-60 commando. Thackeray, who lauded the efforts of the commandos, assured them of support from the government.



The arms factory, located around five kilometres away from the Maharashtra border inside Chhattisgarh, had several machines and tools which helped the Naxals’ expert teams to shape crude grenade launchers and other ammunition meant to be used in it.



DIG, Naxal range, Sandip Patil, who had supervised the 48-hour operation along with SP Ankit Goyal, said the Naxal literature had helped the police to know their strategy of manufacturing artillery to fight security forces. It was underlined once again by the latest discovery and seizure from the arms factory. “The Naxals may not be able to manufacture sophisticated weapons and ammunition but they were certainly in the process of preparing some local version of the under-barrel grenade launcher (UBGL),” he said.


Patil, who had provided food for the injured jawan from his residence, said the Naxals had least expected the C-60 commandos to reach the interiors of their territory


https://m.timesofindia.com/city/nagpur/naxals-were-trying-to-manufacture-grenade-launcher/amp_articleshow/81369716.cms

Maoists Step Up Low-Intensity Warfare Strategy With Pressure Bombs


Several killed and many injured when men in uniform fell to Naxal’s plot in Chhattisgarh.

Maoists Step Up Low-Intensity Warfare Strategy With Pressure Bombs
Head Constable Laxmikant Dwivedi of Chhattisgarh police stepped on a pressure IED and was killed on the spot.
  • CNN-NEWS18
  • UPDATED ON:MARCH 5, 2021, 19:55 IST
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Head Constable Laxmikant Dwivedi of Chhattisgarh police had just finished lunch and took a few steps to reach the shade of a tree nearby. Unaware that his next step would be his last, Dwivedi stepped on a pressure IED and was killed on the spot. His entire body below the abdomen was ripped apart, one of his legs found on the top of the tree, at least 20 feet away from the ground.

And four hours before Dwivedi’s death, three constables from the Jharkhand police had met a similar fate. Head constables Hardwar Shah, Kiran Surin and Devendra Kumar were on area domination duty in the forests of Toklo in west Singhbhum district. One of them stepped on an IED accidentally, killing three and injuring at least four others. CRPF which was part of the joint operation with Jharkhand Jaguars said the IED was triggered by pressure of the human weight.


The Jharkahnd police’s preliminary investigation suggests involvement of locals in the incident. Officials in the Naxal-affected districts tell news18 that pressure bombs are not a new addition to the arsenal of CPI (Maoist) but their usage is part of a new strategy. “The pressure bombs earlier used one or two kgs of explosives, now 7-8kg is being used. The intention is to kill and not just deter forces from going inside Maoist strongholds,” Dr Abhishek Pallav, SP Dantewada told News18.

Officials said the number of pressure bombs being planted have also gone up. The strategy coincides with the start of the Tactical Counter Offensive (TCOC), which Maoists have announced from February till June. At least two officers, a CRPF Deputy Commandant and a COBRA Assistant Commandant were killed owing to the pressure bombs. Five such incidents involving pressure bombs have been reported since the start of TCOC maiming the State and central police officers.



“This is part of their low-intensity warfare strategy. Explosives are being procured easily from mines nearby. They use gelatin and daily use objects like pressure cookers or tiffin boxes to assemble the bomb,” an officer told news18.

He added that this strategy was working for Maoist since it involves low risk. “You don’t need cadre to join the wires or trigger a switch on spotting a convoy or patrol party. You just plant it and wait for someone to step in,” the officer explained. The Naxal strategy as per officials, now seems to be, to plant a IED in the open, where it is spotted easily, and plant a few others around this. Forces, who go to defuse the overt IED get injured or killed as the covert IEDs explode enroute. The bombs have an effect on the morale of the forces as they result in loss of limbs for those who are injured.

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The DGP’s office in Jharkhand also confirmed the new strategy. “They are now avoiding battles or confrontations. IEDs, especially pressure bombs, do not need direct contact. So this helps to implement them in their new strategy,” a top officer in Jharkhand Police told News18.

As per CRPF dossier on January 19, 2021, after an encounter with Maoists in Bijapur, a tiffin bomb was recovered. In February, the same district saw Constable Prem Kumar Raut step on a booby trap injuring his left ankle. Spikes injured AC Ramesh Kumar in the same operation. CRPF officers say ever since Basav Raju took over as the general secretary of CPI Maoist, the group is innovating to inflict maximum damage to forces at minimum risk to themselves

https://www.news18.com/news/india/maoists-step-up-low-intensity-warfare-strategy-with-pressure-bombs-3502949.html


Maoists kill man branding him as police informer in Andhra’s Vizag forests



Police said the victim had earlier worked as a member of Maoist militia and surrendered a couple of years ago.
PUBLISHED ON MAR 06, 2021 02:58 PM IST

On Friday, Maoists killed two men after branding them as police informers when they had gone to a village in Bijapur from Dantewada.(File photo for representation)

Communist Party of India (Maoist) activists hacked to death a 35-year-old tribal suspecting him to be a police informer in Andhra Pradesh’s Visakhapatnam district late on Friday night, police said Saturday.

The incident happened at Kothapalem tribal village of Gudem Kotha Veedhi block on the Andhra-Odisha border. The deceased was identified as Korra Piluku, a Koya tribal farmer.

According to G K Veedhi police sub-inspector Pasupureddy Anish, a group of Maoists barged into the house of Piluku in Kothapalem and attacked him with lethal weapons in front of his wife and four children.

They told his family that he had been acting as an informer of the police, despite several warnings and so he had to be killed.

The police denied the allegations of the Maoists that Piluku was one of their informers. r. “In fact, he had earlier worked as a member of Maoist militia and surrendered to the police a couple of years ago. We do not know why the Maoists killed him,” Anish said


https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/maoists-kill-man-branding-him-as-police-informer-in-andhra-s-vizag-forests-101615022431987.html

Friday, March 05, 2021

ITBP jawan killed in Maoist IED blast in Chhattisgarh’s Narayanpur


It was the second Maoist attack in the last two days in Chhattisgarh.
PUBLISHED ON MAR 06, 2021 08:33 AM IST


An Assistant Commandant of CRPF’s CoBRA was killed and seven others were injured in an IED blast in Chhattisgarh(PTI file photo)

A police personnel was killed in an improvised explosive device (IED) blast triggered by Maoists in Chhattisgarh’s Narayanpur district of Bastar region on Friday evening, police said.

The Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) personnel died after an IED planted by Maoist in the Kohkametta area exploded.


“The jawan Mangesh Ramteke who hailed from Nagpur died in an IED blast while retreating from road security operation near Kihkad village about 5 km from Kohkametta police station,” said Sunderaj P, inspector general of police (IGP), Bastar.

The IED was planted around 100m away from the road, IGP said.

On Thursday, a constable of the Chhattisgarh Armed Force (CAF) was killed in an IED blast, planted by Maoists in Dantewada.

Police said that the incident took place in the jungles of Pahurnar village under Geedam police station area where a team of security forces was providing security for construction work

https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/itbp-jawan-killed-in-maoist-ied-blast-in-chhattisgarh-s-narayanpur-101614999338489.html


Maoist attack averted in Telangana: CRPF apprehends 8 Naxal couriers; gelatin sticks, 350 detonators recovered


Hyderabad: In a major catch for the security agencies, the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) has apprehended eight people who were identified as ‘Naxal couriers’ in Telangana's Bhadradri Kothagudem district. The Naxal associates were caught when the CRPF men were checking the vehicles passing through the route. The CRPF troops recovered 350 electric detonators, nine liquid Gelatin sticks wires, motorcycle and cash were recovered from their possession.

"350 electric detonators, nine liquid gelatin stick wires, a motorcycle and cash were recovered from their possession," a CRPF official said.


The arrest of eight Naxal cadres comes a day after three Jharkhand Police personnel were killed as an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) went off in West Singhbum district in Jharkhand on March One CRPF jawan was also injured in the blast.

The "pressure IED blast" took place when CRPF 197 Battalion along with the Jharkhand Jaguar (AG 11) of the state police were patrolling near Hoyahatu village under Toklo police station area in West Singhbhum.

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In another Left-wing related attack, a Chhattisgarh Armed Force (CAF) jawan was killed when a pressure improvised explosive device went off in Dantewada district. The IED was planted by the Naxals near Pahurnar village under Geedam police station area.

To tackle the Left-wing extremism menace, the then Jhrakhan government in 2008 had given its od for the formation of 20 Assault Groups (AGs) of Special Task Force (STF). The special force meant to eliminate extremist activities was later renamed as Jharkhand Jaguar (JJ).


Amid four exchanges of fire, Gadchiroli police bust Maoist arms unit


The arms unit operation was carried out by a group of three C60 parties led by Additional Superintendent of Police (Aheri) Somay Munde.

Deputy Inspector General of Police (Gadchiroli range) Sandip Patil told The Indian Express, "We had planned an operation on Wednesday against the tactical counter-offensive campaign (TCOC) of the Naxalites that began on March 1."

A Maharashtra Police officer was injured in a Naxalite ambush close to the Maharashtra-Chhattisgarh border on Thursday. The police were on their way back after destroying an arms repair unit of the Naxalites.

Deputy Inspector General of Police (Gadchiroli range) Sandip Patil told The Indian Express, “We had planned an operation on Wednesday against the tactical counter-offensive campaign (TCOC) of the Naxalites that began on March 1. Over the last three days, four exchanges of fire happened with the Naxalites. Our men destroyed a gun repair unit of the Naxalites in Kodur forest across the border in Chhattisgarh on Wednesday after an exchange of fire with them, while one of our men was injured in the leg in a Naxal ambush on the way back on Thursday.”

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Patil added, “The operation was launched under the leadership of Additional Superintendent of Police (Aheri) Somay Munde. Eight of our C60 commando parties comprising 250 men were involved. On Wednesday, they entered Kodur area and engaged a Naxal group in action near Kukameta village. Exchange of fire went on for 25 minutes, with Naxals running away. Our men found the gun unit in the area having two lathe machines and destroyed it.”

The arms unit operation was carried out by a group of three C60 parties led by Munde. The injured policeman was identified as Mohan Usendi.

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Two more encounters followed around 4 and 6 pm in Kodur forest, in which a policeman was shot in the leg. On Friday, there was another encounter at 10.30 am between Naxalites and the party led by Munde. “But the Naxals fled, with police dominating in the fire,” Patil said.

“The parties have now returned to Maharashtra side and are on their way back. We will get details after they reach Kothi police outpost in Bhamragarh tahsil.”

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While the ambush occurred near the Maharashtra-Chhattisgarh border, sources said that Maharashtra Police asked teams of Chhattisgarh Police to be on standby during the day.

Chhattisgarh Police officials later said that an Air Force chopper was to be routed through Chhattisgarh, but the plan was changed. Senior police officials said that border areas have been alerted.

Naxals carry out TCOC annually from March to May.

(With inputs from ENS Raip


https://indianexpress.com/article/india/amid-four-exchanges-of-fire-gadchiroli-police-bust-maoist-arms-unit-7215993/


3 Jharkhand Jaguar force jawans killed in Maoist landmine blast


Two of the three killed jawans have been identified as constable Haridwar Shah (Palamu) and constable Kiran Surin (Simdega).
By Debashish Sarkar, Hindustan Times, Jamshedpur
PUBLISHED ON MAR 04, 2021 01:28 PM IST


As per sources, the landmines blasts were triggered by the Maoists when a joint team of district police, CRPF and JJ were on a search operation early this morning in and around Langi hills,

Three jawans of Jharkhand Jaguar (JJ) Special Assault Group-11, a special unit of the state police department, were killed and four others were injured in a landmine blast by the banned CPI (Maoist) in Langi jungle atop Langi hills under Toklo police station (PS) in West Singhbhum district of Jharkhand early Thursday morning, said police. The encounter with the Maoists is still underway, it added.

"Three JJ AG-11 jawans have died while two others have been seriously injured in IED blasts triggered by Maoist in Langi jungle under Toklo PS in West Singhbhum district this morning. Two other jawans have also sustained minor splinter injuries and have been shifted to Chakradharpur hospital while two seriously injured jawans have been airlifted to Medica Hospital in Ranchi. Encounter with the Maoists is currently on," said Niraj Sinha, Jharkhand director general of police (DGP).

As per sources, the landmines blasts were triggered by the Maoists when a joint team of district police, CRPF and JJ were on a search operation early this morning in and around Langi hills, the site of four encounters in three days between security forces and the Maoists last month

https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/3-jharkhand-jaguar-force-jawans-killed-in-maoist-landmine-blast-101614844519416.html


Elite commando injured in landmine blast by Maoists in Maharashtra’s Gadchiroli


On February 23, a Maoist camp was destroyed and an ambush against security forces was foiled by police in Gadchiroli district.
By Pradip Maitra | Edited by Abhinav Sahay, Nagpur
UPDATED ON MAR 05, 2021 04:15 PM IST


An encounter between Maoists and the elite security force was underway, reports said. File Photo/Representational(HT Photo)

A commando of Maharashtra's elite C-60 anti-Maoist squad was injured in an encounter with the armed insurgents near Bhamragarh in south Gadchiroli, bordering Chhattisgarh, some 350 kms from Nagpur on Friday, said officials.


The encounter took place when a C-60 battalion was patrolling in the jungle of Koparshi under Bhamragarh tehsil early this morning. The Maoists, who were camping there for a meeting, triggered a landmine explosion, in which at least one commando was injured, as per reports.

A fierce battle was taking place between the rebels and the elite security squad in the area. The district police headquarters has sent a helicopter to bring the injured commando for treatment, along with additional personnel with arms and ammunition. Besides, a large number of paramilitary forces, along with state police, were sent to the spot to help the C-60 squad, reports said.

The Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) Gadchiroli range, Sandeep Patil said that the commandos successfully destroyed a mini arms and ammunition factory near the blast site. “The operation in the area to flush out Maoists is still on-going,” he said and suspected some casualties on the side of militants

https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/elite-commando-injured-in-landmine-blast-by-maoists-in-maharashtra-s-gadchiroli-101614940250128.html


Jharkhand: Maoists set off mine, kill 3 cops sent for combing ops



The incident took place at 8.45 am at the foothills of Lanji Pahar – an area under the Toklo police station of Chakradharpur block -- when personnel of CRPF’s 197 Battalion and Jharkhand Jaguar’s Assault 11 were on their way to reinforce an ongoing combing operation.


Chhattisgarh: CoBRA officer injured in IED blast in Sukma
Police said Maoists targeted the jawans and detonated the Claymore mine planted at the foothills of Lanji Pahar. (Representational image)


Three constables of the State Jaguar Police, a task force to deal with Left Wing Extremism, were killed and two others injured in a Claymore mine explosion triggered by Maoists Thursday in the Chaibasa area of West Singhbhum district of Jharkhand, police said.

The incident took place at 8.45 am at the foothills of Lanji Pahar – an area under the Toklo police station of Chakradharpur block — when personnel of CRPF’s 197 Battalion and Jharkhand Jaguar’s Assault 11 were on their way to reinforce an ongoing combing operation.

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Police said Maoists targeted the jawans and detonated the Claymore mine planted at the foothills of Lanji Pahar.

Jharkhand DGP Niraj Sinha said: “A combing operation was ongoing, additional force was going to supplement them and three jawans who died were part of it. Two of them died at the spot and another died while he was being carried to the hospital

https://indianexpress.com/article/india/jharkhand-maoists-set-off-mine-kill-3-cops-7214765/


Tuesday, March 02, 2021

5 Naxalites held with arms in Jharkhand


Chatra (Jharkhand), Mar 2 (PTI) The police on Tuesday arrested five Naxalites of two outfits from Chatra district of Jharkhand and seized arms and ammunition from them, an officer said.

They used to extort contractors and businessmen, Sub- Divisional Police Officer of Chatra Avinash Kumar said.

Of the arrested five, three are members of the Tritiya Sammelan Prastuti Committee (TSPC) while the two others belong to the People''s Liberation Front of India (PLFI).

Two American made pistols, a .303 rifle looted from the police, three other pistols and 32 cartridges were seized from their possession, Kumar said.

The police also confiscated six mobile phones, 16 SIM cards, three motorbikes and other articles from them. PTI IKD NN NN

Telangana: Five CPI (Maoist) members surrender before police



 

Hyderabad: Five members of CPI (Maoist) surrendered before police in Bhadradri-Kothagudem district in Telangana on Tuesday, police said.

Maoist sub-zonal commander surrenders in Gaya


TNN | Updated: Mar 2, 2021, 09:27 IST
TNN
Representative image

GAYA: An active sub-zonal commander of the Maoists, Sanjay Singh Bhokta alias Rakesh (30), surrendered before senior police and the administrative officials at the CRPF headquarters in Gaya on Monday.


Rakesh was active in Maoists’ organization in Chhakarbandha area of Bankebazar area of the district for the last five years. He has been made named accused in at least five cases lodged with different police stations in Gaya and 

Aurangabad

 districts. He is also an accused in the killing of chowkidar of Amas police station in 2018, 

IED blast

 at Pachrukhiya under the Madanpur police station area of 

Aurangabad district

 in 2019 in which a CRPF SI was killed.


During interaction with the mediapersons after his surrender, Rakesh said, “After joining the Maoist organization, my life was under constant threat and problems for my 

family members

 had increased manifold. I was also a victim of misbehaviour in the organization. However, I was promised a house. But nothing came true. Hence I decided to abandon the organization and contacted the security personnel with a request for safe exit.”


CRPF director general (DG) Hemant Priyadarshi, who was present in Gaya during Rakesh’s surrender said, “All help as per the rehabilitation policy of state government would be provided to Rakesh and his family. Regarding the charges levelled against him in the cases lodged, a transparent trial and investigation would be conducted to ensure justice to him.”


On this occasion, Magadh range IG Amit Lodha, CRPF Patna range DIG Sanjay Kumar, CRPF 159 batallion commandant Nishit Kumar, COBRA 205 battalion commandant Dilip Srivastava, Gaya DM Abhishek Singh, SSP Aditya Kumar besides other police and administrative officials were also present.


It is worth mentioning here that security personnel had recovered 83 IEDs planted under the ‘kuchcha road’ in Chhakarbandha area on Saturday

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/patna/maoist-sub-zonal-commander-surrenders-in-gaya/articleshow/81279180.cms


Friday, February 26, 2021

ED attaches assets of Jharkhand Naxal operative


PTINEW DELHI 26 FEBRUARY 2021 16:13 IST
UPDATED: 26 FEBRUARY 2021 16:13 IST

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday said it has attached assets worth over ₹ 2 crore of a Jharkhand-based Maoist operative as part of a money laundering probe against him and others.

The frozen assets are in the form of vehicles and are held in the name of Bindeshwar Ganjhu alias Bindu Ganjhu and his firm Maa Gange coal trading pvt. ltd.

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The central probe agency said its criminal case against Ganjhu and others, under various sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), is linked to the extremists collecting funds through extortion of contractors, coal traders, coal transporters in the Magadh-Amrapali coal block area of Jharkhand. The state police and the National Investigation Agency (NIA) are also probing the accused and have filed multiple charge sheets against them.

Bindeshwar Ganjhu, the ED said in a statement, "used to collect levy from transporters and delivery order holders in Magadh-Amrapali coal block area in connivance with other extremists of Tritiya Prastuti Committee (TPC) in Chatra district of Jharkhand." "Ganjhu, being a member of the outlawed organisation TPC, was closely associated with top leaders and acquired proceeds of crime in his name as well as his firm which were projected and claimed as untainted properties," it claimed.

The total value of assets attached under the latest order is ₹ 2.03 crore while immovable and movable properties worth ₹ 2.89 crore belonging to Ganjhu and an another person Pradeep Ram and their two firms were earlier attached in this case, it said. The total attachment of assets in this case now stands at ₹ 4.92 crore

CPI (Maoist) supports stir against VSP privatisation


Special CorrespondentVISAKHAPATNAM 26 FEBRUARY 2021 23:25 IST
UPDATED: 26 FEBRUARY 2021 23:25 IST

The banned CPI (Maoist) has extended its support to the people and workers agitating against the proposed strategic sale of the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant (VSP).

In a letter released by Kailasam, spokesman of the CPI (Maoist) Andhra Odisha Border Special Zonal Committee (AOBSZ), the party stated that VSP had been achieved after people made huge sacrifices. As many as 32 persons had been killed, the letter said, and added that the sale of steel plant should not be allowed.

The outfit also found fault with the State government for not taking up the protest seriously.

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“The YSRCP government is trying to misguide the people by saying that the decision to privatise VSP has been taken by the Union government without its consent,” Kailasam said in the letter.

“Both YSRCP and BJP are on the same page on the issue. If the YSRCP is really keen on supporting the agitation, the Chief Minister should ask all his MPs to resign for the cause,” he said.

The Maoists also criticised the farm Acts, and said the BJP-led Union government was only working for big private companies


https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/cpi-maoist-supports-stir-against-vsp-privatisation/article33945024.ece

Maoist violence on the decline in Chhattisgarh


The number of gunbattles came down to 84 last year compared to 121 in 2019, 166 in 2018, 198 in 2017, and 211 in 2016 even as officials cautioned against reading too much into the data
UPDATED ON FEB 26, 2021 07:50 PM IST


File photo of a Maoist camp.

There has been a significant decline in gunbattles between security forces and Maoists in Left-wing insurgency-hit Chhattisgarh over the last few years, according to the state police data. The number of gunbattles came down to 84 last year compared to 121 in 2019, 166 in 2018, 198 in 2017, and 211 in 2016 even as officials cautioned against reading too much into the data.


Multiple officials said the decrease could also be because of less engagement of security forces in core areas with Maoists and defensive counter-insurgency strategy. “...tactically Maoists are also not engaging the police until they are in a very dominant position. There was hardly any engagement between the Maoists and the forces in 2019...,” said an official on condition of anonymity.

A second official said the Maoists adopted a wait-and-watch strategy to understand the new government that was voted to power in the state in 2018. “Many Maoist leaders were of the opinion that a soft pro-tribal government has come in the state and they should not do anything to annoy it....but the killing of Bharatiya Janata Party lawmaker Bhima Mandavi [in 2019] led to change in the stance,” said the official posted in Maoist-hit Bastar region.

https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/maoist-violence-on-the-decline-in-chhattisgarh-101614334438377.html


‘My Daughter Wasn’t a Maoist’: Mother of 20-Yr-Old Who Killed Self


4 days after the alleged ‘surrender’, Pandey killed herself on 23 February, while she was kept at Karli Police line.
KASHIF KAKVI AND VISHNUKANT TIWARI
HOT NEWS
Published: 
The family and kin of the deceased 20-year-old | (Photo Courtesy: Kashif Kakvi)

The family and kin of the deceased 20-year-old

"Neither my daughter was a Maoist nor did she surrender. The police detained her from home and tortured her to surrender," alleged Somdi, mother of a 20-year-old suspected Maoist who reportedly killed herself on Tuesday, 23 February, in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada district inside the police line four days after the surrender.

"Gaon me Naxaliyon ka aana jana laga rahta hai aur jab bhi Naxali gaon walo ko bulate hai humein majburan jana padta hai, iska matlab ye nahi ke hum ya meri beti Kawasi Pandey naxali the ( Naxals visited the village often, and whenever they called upon the villagers, we were forced to go. However, this didn't mean that either me or my daughter Kawasi Pandey were naxalites)," said Somdi while talking to The Quint over phone.

She is a resident of Gudse village, which falls under Katekalyan police station of Dantewada, 60 km away from the district headquarter.

Dantewada is one of the worst Maoist-affected areas of Chhattisgarh, with Gudse village – located inside the forest – seeing frequent Maoist movement.

"She wanted to study, she was forced to quit education after Class 5 because the school was far away and the Maoist movement has always been a looming threat to all of us. But, she wanted to educate her younger brother," said her mother with a heavy voice over the phone. "Now, who will look after us and who will teach my son?" she added.
The family and kin of the deceased 20-year-old

(Photo Courtesy: Kashif Kakvi)


However, as per the Dantewada police's official communique, Pandey was a part of Chetna Natya Mandali, a cultural outfit of the banned CPI (Maoist) and she surrendered on her own accord with five other Maoists on 19 February. Except for Pandey, five of them were carrying a combined bounty of Rs 15 lakh.

But, four days after the alleged 'surrender', Pandey killed herself on 23 February while she was being kept at the Karli Police line. As per the police, she had surrendered to the police under the Lon-Varratu scheme, which appeals to the Maoists to leave the arms and return to normal life.

Pandey had surrendered to the police under the Lon-Varratu scheme

(Photo Courtesy: Kashif Kakvi)



In local Gondi language, Lon-Varratu literally translates to 'return home'. A flagship scheme for Maoists by the state government, it was launched by the Dantewada police in June last year, under which the police department released a list of 1,600 suspected Maoists or those associated with them.

According to police, the scheme got an overwhelming response till 19 February. 82 Maoists, carrying a bounty on their heads have surrendered, along with 234 others who were associated with Maoist activities. Many have returned to normal life, police said.

“Pandey was a member of Chetna Natya Mandali, a cultural outfit of the CPI (Maoist), and she came to us on 18 February, along with five others, including a senior Maoist cadre 35-year-old Kumari Jogi working for the Katekalyan Area Committee, to surrender of their own accord,” said Abhishek Pallav, Superintendent of Police, Dantewada to The Quint.

Kumari and Pandey were the residents of same village.

As per the Lon-Varratu scheme, after the surrender, they (Maoists) are kept in the police line and undergo counseling for days. Once they return to normal life, police release them on family's accord or help them to get jobs to sustain their livelihood.

Spelling the reason behind her death, Dantewada SP Pallav said, “I used to talk to her regularly. She was under constant pressure from the family to return home, fearing the Maoist may attack the family after her surrender. She was very young and couldn’t take this pressure, which led to her killing herself.”

Nevertheless, the Sarpanch of Gudse village Hemwata Kawasi also backed Pandey's mother's claim saying that neither was she a Maoist nor was she associated to them.

‘Forced To Surrender’

Talking to The Quint, the Sarpanch Hemwata claimed, "The girl was detained from her home by the District Reserve Guards (local force of trained guards of Chhattisgarh Police) along with Kumari on 18 February. Both Kumari and Pandey were taken to the nearby jungle by police personnel, where they were tied to the trees, and were forced to surrender under the Lon-Varratu by the police."

“Pandey wasn’t a member of any Naxal-outfit. Her name was also not in the list of 1,600 people issued by the Dantewada police under Lon-Varratu. Her death is on the police force who had pressurised her to surrender as a Naxal and kept her away from her family.”
Sarpanch Hemwata

The unprecedented death of Pandey irked the tribal, social outfits and a political party of the state.

A day after she was found dead, a tribal outfit, Chhattisgarh Sarv Aadiwasi Samaj, met the Dantewada collector and sought an explanation for her death.

"She was taken away from her home in the afternoon of 18 February, along with Kumari and both were taken to the nearby Jungle where the personals of District Reserve Guards threatened to encounter if they didn't surrender,” the letter writes. The outfit demanded a re-postmortem of the body by a team of expert doctors as it had been done without the family's consent.

Probe Committee Formed

Seeing backlash over the death, Dantewada collector Deepak Soni ordered a magisterial inquiry headed by SDM Dantewada, which will likely submit its report in a week.

"A probe committee has been formed to look into the matter," said Deepak Soni, Collector Dantewada. "As far as the demand of re-postmortem is concerned, the report of the first one is awaited and decision on re-postmortem will only be taken based on the findings of the report."

While Soni Sori, a tribal rights activist working in South Bastar, claimed, “A day after the alleged surrender, when her mother went to meet her at Police line, Pandey claimed that she was being tortured and wanted to return home. On 23 February, when her mother went to see her again, police denied meeting under the pretense of ongoing interrogation. But, by the end of the day, police informed them that she killed herself. Hence police’s claim of Pandey killing herself seems suspicious.”

“Police and DRG personals in Dantewada have been running a hoax in the name of Lon-Varratu. Hundreds of surrenders are dubious and need to be investigated. People do not come forward out of fear of the police. The young girl who died was subject to the same fear and pressure,” she added.

In addition to that, the Janta Congress Chhattisgarh party, headed by former Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Ajit Jogi's son Amit Jogi constituted a three-membered (Navneet Chand, Sujeet Karma, and Jamuna Chandraya) investigation committee to probe into the death of surrendered woman Maoist. The team will give its report in three days.

Replying to the allegations of pressurised surrender and alleged murder, SP Abhishek said, “They were not pressurised, the deceased, in fact, nobody has been forced to surrender. They willfully came to us for surrendering and we followed the process." “It is a futile attempt of the Maoists to defame the Lon-Varratu campaign, that has weakened their cadres and put them on the back foot,” he added.



https://www.thequint.com/news/hot-news/my-daughter-wasnt-a-maoist-mother-of-20-year-old-who-killed-self-in-dantewada

Thursday, February 25, 2021

DRG jawan injured in encounter with Naxals in Chhattisgarh



Raipur, Feb 25 (PTI) A District Reserve Guard (DRG) jawan was injured in an encounter with Naxals in Narayanpur district of Chhattisgarh on Thursday, police said.

The incident took place in the morning in a forest near Tekmetta village, around 300 km from the state capital Raipur, when joint teams of security forces were out an anti- Naxal operation, Inspector General of Police (Bastar range) Sundarraj P told PTI.

DRG jawan Satrughan Thakur received bullet injury on the wrist of his left hand. He has been shifted to a hospital in Narayanpur and his condition is reported to be out of danger, the official said.

Personnel of the DRG, Special Task Force (STF) and Chhattisgarh Armed Force (CAF) were involved in the operation being conducted since last couple of days in forests on the tri-junction of Narayanpur and Kanker districts in the state and Gadchiroli in neighbouring Maharashtra, he said.

During the operation, security forces raided Maoist hideouts in the forests of Tekmetta and Musparasi and multiple exchanges of fire took place between security personnel and ultras, the official said.

The operation is still underway in the area, he said.

On Wednesday, a DRG constable was killed in a gunfight with Naxals in the same area during the operation, he added.

In a separate incident on Wednesday, a constable of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) was killed in a pipe bomb blast triggered by Naxals under Sonpur police station area in Narayanpur. PTI TKP GK GK

Chhattisgarh Naxal menace: 54 cops died in 2 years, 120 ultras killed


The details were given by state Home Minister Tamradhwaj Sahu in a written reply in the Assembly, while responding to a question.

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By   |  Published: 25th Feb 2021  4:56 pm
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Raipur: The Chhattisgarh government on Thursday said Naxal violence claimed lives of 54 security personnel, including 18 from the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF), in the state in last two years.

Besides, 120 Naxals were also killed in encounters with security forces, while 659 ultras surrendered during the same period, it said.

The details were given by state Home Minister Tamradhwaj Sahu in a written reply in the Assembly, while responding to a question raised by Leader of the Opposition Dharamlal Kaushik.

“Fifty four security personnel, including 18 from the CAPF, were martyred in Naxal violence from 2019 till January 31 this year,” Sahu said.

The minister also informed that 79 Naxals were killed in encounters and 315 surrendered in 2019, while 41 ultras were killed and 344 surrendered in 2020.

He said out of Rs 28.88 crore (collective) compensation which was supposed to be given to the kin of these deceased personnel, Rs 26.63 crore has been disbursed while Rs 2.25 crore is yet to be given.

Of the 36 deceased personnel belonging to the state police, compensatory jobs have been given in 29 cases, the minister said in his reply.

“The above mentioned compensation includes the insurance money and ex-gratia given by the state government to the kin of the central security forces personnel killed in the state in Naxal violence,” he said

A warning to Kerala, says Naxal Varghese’s kin


By Amiya Meethal| Express News Service | Published: 26th February 2021 06:33 AM


The siblings of Naxal leader A Varghese. His elder brother A Devassia is no more


KOZHIKODE: 51 years after the fake encounter that killed him in Thirunelli forest, govt decision to give Rs 50 lakh in compensation comes as closure for family — not for the amount but for the message. TNIE looks back on Varghese’s role in emancipating tribals of Wayanad and state machinery’s brutal face

Now a practising lawyer at Mananthavady court, A Varghese was three when he saw the most illustrious person of his Arikkad family for the first and last time -- Naxalite leader A Varghese or Comrade Varghese as he was called. The Naxalite leader is the elder brother of the advocate’s father (A Thomas) and when he met the ‘Valyappachan’ in 1970, there was no life in the body of the “saviour of Adivasis”. It was the funeral of Varghese, after he was shot dead by the state police at the age of 32 on February 18, 1970, in Thirunelli forest, as confessed by constable Ramachandran Nair after 28 long years. 

After more than five decades, now the state government has decided to give Rs 50 lakh as compensation to Varghese’s four siblings. However, the family says that it is not compensation but a warning to the state. “Even if one rupee is the amount, we would wholeheartedly welcome it. For, it is a warning to the state which took the life of a man, who the state is supposed to protect,” said advocate Varghese. 

There are several such Vargheses who were killed in suspicious encounters -- from Vythiri “encounter” to the shootout at Manjikkandy in Attappadi, he says.Comrade Varghese was the second son among the six children of Varkey-Rosa couple at Ozhukkan Moola near Vellamunda in Mananthavady. 


Research centre planned
Advocate Varghese told TNIE that the `50 lakh is being planned to be used towards the activities of Varghese Memorial Trust, which was set up jointly by CPI (ML) Red Flag P C Unnichekkan faction and family members. A 70-cent plot was allocated to Varghese and the plan is to start a research centre there to document the tumultuous path tread by the downtrodden in Kerala society with a focus on Varghese’s activities, plus a museum. 

“The details will be decided after a meeting of the trust. Varghese was instrumental in ending the bonded slavery system of tribals in Wayanad. Till then, the tribals had been sold to feudal landlords during the annual festival at Valliyoorkavu temple in Mananthavady. The movement also heralded a change in the remuneration received by tribals in exchange of their labour -- from rice and grains to rupees,” said Adv Varghese, who was formerly associated with CPI (ML) Red Flag.

After the revelation of Ramachandran Nair that he killed Varghese on the instruction of then DySP K Lakshmana in 1998, four siblings of Varghese -- A Joseph, Mariyakutty, A Thomas and Annamma -- moved a writ petition in the Kerala High Court for an impartial probe into the incident. “No compensation was demanded then. While ordering a CBI probe, the court had asked why the family was not asking for compensation if the state had killed Varghese,” said advocate Varghese. 

A compensation petition was submitted in 2012 in the HC wherein the same was given to the state government as per the order of the court. Meanwhile, the CBI probe had found the second accused -- former IG Lakshmana -- guilty and the court sentenced him to life imprisonment. The first accused, Ramachandran Nair, died during trial and the third accused, ex-DGP P Vijayan (who was then SP), was let free under benefit of doubt. Four eyewitnesses -- Yogi, Karimban, Choman Mooppan and Prabhakara Warrier -- deposed in the court that they saw police taking away Varghese, which proved crucial in busting the police theory that the Naxalite leader was killed in an encounter

https://www.newindianexpress.com/states/kerala/2021/feb/26/a-warning-to-keralasays-naxal-vargheses-kin-2269058.html