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Archive for December 21st, 2007

Crush Maoists, says Manmohan Singh

Posted by Indian Vanguard on December 21, 2007

Indo-Asian News Service
New Delhi, Dec. 20: Underlining again, that Maoists posed the single biggest security challenge to India, Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh today urged chief ministers to cripple their rebellion with all means at their command.

Delving at length on the Maoist movement that affects at least 12 states, Dr Singh reiterated the need to shore up the country’s internal security machinery and called for superior policing techniques to defeat the insurgency. “Not a day passes without an incident of left-wing extremism taking place somewhere or the other. There also seems to be a consolidation of various groups with better coordination and strike capabilities,” the Prime Minister told chief ministers attending a conclave on internal security. “I have said in the past that left-wing extremism is the single biggest security challenge to the Indian state. It continues to be so, and we cannot rest in peace till we have eliminated this virus. We need a coordinated response to this challenge. The answers to the problem are well known. We need to cripple Naxalite forces with all the means at our command.”

Although the number of violent incidents blamed on the Maoists fell from 1,509 in 2006 to 1,285 until Oct 31 this year, the number of security personnel killed by them rose from 157 last year to 188 until the end of October in 2007.
Referring to this week’s jailbreak in Chhattisgarh’s Dantewada district ~ the epicentre of the Maoist rebellion ~ where nearly 300 prisoners along with Maoists escaped, Dr Singh lamented the paucity of policemen to counter the fast-emerging challenges including hinterland terrorism.

“I hear that there were only three personnel at the Dantewada jail. Inadequate, ill-equipped, ill-trained, poorly-motivated personnel cannot take on the Naxal extremists who are increasingly better equipped and organised.”

“They are carefully targeting all aspects of economic activity. They are targeting vital economic infrastructure so as to cripple transport and logistic capabilities and also slow down any development activity,” he said. He urged the chief ministers to strengthen core policing, fill up vacancies in police forces and show better leadership and resolve to face up to the challenge.

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‘Porattam’ condemns arrest of Maoist leader

Posted by Indian Vanguard on December 21, 2007

Staff Reporter

PALAKKAD: “Porattam,” a revolutionary organisation, has condemned the arrest of the Maoist leader Malla Raji Reddy of Andhra Pradesh from Kochi.

In a statement here on Thursday, Porattam state convener Mundur Ravunni said the arrest was to satisfy the interests of the Left Democratic Front (LDF) government in the State. It was also for protecting some narrow political interests in Kerala.

The statement also condemned the arrest of P. Govindan Kutty, Editor and Publisher of People’s March.

The search in the office of the publication by the police was an attack on the freedom of press.

The Hindu

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Tamil Nadu:Give medical aid to Maoists: HC

Posted by Indian Vanguard on December 21, 2007

Chennai, Dec 20: The Madras High Court today directed Tamil Nadu police to provide all necessary medical aid to five Maoists who were arrested in Theni district.

A division bench comprising Justice P D Dinakaran and Justice R Regupathy gave the directive on a habeas corpus petition filed by Haribabu, an advocate from Salem, seeking to produce Murugananthan, Mahalingam, Maruthu, Balamurugan and Lokesh before the court.

When the petition came up for hearing, Advocate Sankarasubbu, appearing for the petitioner, sought a direction to provide medical aid to the detenus and give permission to advocates to meet them.

The bench said, “We are of the considered opinion that immediate medical aid was more necessary than permitting the advocates to get instructions.”

“Hence the State Home Secretary, DGP, Additional DGP, Superintendent of Police, Theni, are directed to provide all necessary medical aid to the detenus immediately as deemed fit by the medical officer. Judicial magistrate, Andipatti, is directed to oversee the medical treatment that would be given to the detenus,” the bench said.

In his petition, Haribabu alleged the five were shot at from a close range.

Five of them were nabbed by police after an exchange of fire in Varushanadu, near Theni, yesterday. Two of them have been remanded to custody while three others were hospitalised. (Agencies)

Published: Friday, December 21, 2007

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“Activities of naxalites, maoists under check in Tamil Nadu”

Posted by Indian Vanguard on December 21, 2007

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi on Thursday said that the government was able to ensure that “no major disturbance is caused to public order and tranquility in the State.”

In his speech read out by the PWD Minister Durai Murugan at the conference of Chief Ministers on internal security, Mr. Karunanidhi said: “The recent success we have had in apprehending certain dreaded Maoists and our constant and effective vigil of the coast line, in coordination with the Coast Guard and the navy have encouraged the State Police to function even more effectively.”

He said: “Tamil nadu is one of the few States with a separate ‘Q’ wing in the intelligence set up to monitor the activities of extremist organisations. The effective system of information gathering developed by this wing, has helped the State to keep activities of naxalites, Maoists, other fundamentalist groups under check.”

Mr. Karunanidhi said the State was equipped to tackle instances of hijacking, armed militancy, insurgency and kidnapping of VIPs for ransom.

The Hindu

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Bihar: Force doubles red border search

Posted by Indian Vanguard on December 21, 2007

Threat looms

Patna, Dec. 20: Security forces have launched intensive search in three rebel-hit districts, on the Indo-Nepal border, following the death of three CRPF jawan in an encounter with Maoist guerrillas in Motihari last night.

“Paramilitary forces are carrying out intensive combing operations in East Champaran, Muzaffarpur and Sheohar districts,” said the inspector-general (operations) in Bihar, S.K. Bhardwaj.

Talking to The Telegraph, he added: “The forces have not yet returned. So, we can not give you the exact figure of the number of arrests as of now.”

The CRPF team engaged in crossfire with the guerrillas at Kadma under Rajepur police station in East Champaran district. A team of 150 cadre was passing through Lakshminia villager in Sheohar in the wake of a police raid there, when the force found them. The Maoists who were heavily armed and far more in number in comparison to security forces, exchanged rounds of fire with the CRPF men killing the latter’s deputy commandant, Vinay Kumar Kapil, and two other jawans.

Last night there were reports of a Maoist being killed in the crossfire, but today the villagers identified the slain person to be a Kadma resident.

Three other villagers, including a girl, were also injured in the crossfire. Maoists have been protesting the death of their comrade Nagina Majhi in Beur central jail here on Saturday night across the state, including the Bihar jails.

Today, they gave a call for a 24-hour Bihar bandh. “No untoward incident has been reported so far from any part of the state,” said a home department spokesperson.

Reportedly, the 150-odd cadre divided themselves in three groups and launched a multi-pronged attack on the security forces.

However, with more re-enforcement reaching in late last night, the security forces succeeded in breaking the groups.

Sources in the BSF and the CRPF reveal that the Naxalites have added more fire power particularly in areas under Sitamarhi, Sheohar, East and West Champaran and Muzaffapur districts bordering Nepal because of a growing nexus with their Nepal counterparts.


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Bengal voices jungle fear

Posted by Indian Vanguard on December 21, 2007


Calcutta, Dec. 20: The state government today said it was difficult for police to combat Maoists since the rebels were “more familiar with” the jungles of Purulia, Bankura and West Midnapore.

The admission comes in a week jailed rebels have created mayhem in Chhattisgarh and Bihar prisons, prompting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to discuss the Maoist threat with chief ministers across the country.

“The Maoists know every nook and corner of the jungles. So, for the police it is very difficult to track them down,” Bengal home secretary Prasad Ranjan Ray said at Writers’ Buildings this afternoon.

Intelligence sources said the rebels were hiding in the vast jungles of Salboni, Jaipur and Ranibadh that stretch across West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia.

Ray said five Central Reserve Police Force companies had been posted in the three Moist-hit districts in addition to State Armed Police and Rapid Action Force personnel.

“We are in touch with Delhi. If it’s necessary to deploy more central forces in the three districts, we will write to the Centre.”

Asked if the government might ban the CPI (Maoist), the home secretary said it would not.

Ray met senior police officers today to discuss police arrangements in and around Writers’ Buildings where Maoist posters sprang up a week ago.

Inspector-general of police (law and order) Raj Kanojia, fresh from Monday’s tour of the Maoist-hit areas, said the police were being trained by the army and the CRPF “to make them more efficient”.

He said all the 36 police camps set up near jungles in these three districts were being upgraded. “Senior officers have been asked to visit the camps and supervise their functioning.”

Calcutta police have tightened vigil in and around the city after the embarrassment over the Maoist literature at Writers’.

City police chief Gautam Mohan Chakrabarti has suspended four constables for failing to catch those who had pasted the posters that called for CPM leaders to be “tried” in a “people’s court”. He said a few more constables would be suspended for dereliction of duty.

The inspector-general of prisons, B.D. Sharma, has asked the superintendent of the Midnapore Central Jail, where more than 30 Maoists are lodged, to upgrade security.


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Naxalites may be plotting a move

Posted by Indian Vanguard on December 21, 2007

Hemendra Narayan
NEW DELHI, Dec. 20: Even as the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, today sounded the alarm on Naxal activities, it would be no surprise if there is “dramatic” action within a day for two by the extreme Left groups in the areas mentioned by him.

Since the jail break in Jehanabad in Bihar two years ago, the extreme left groups, particularly the CPI (Maoists), have taken the security forces completely by surprise, be it in Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh or Andhra Pradesh. Last Sunday’s jailbreak at Dantewada in Chhattisgarh was another example of meticulous planning.

They have overpowered a passenger train, looted an armoury of Home Guards in Giridih and mingled with a wedding party on the main road in Dhanbad to undertake daring action. The element of surprise is their “trump card” as is their hogging the headlines. They have slain an MP in the interior of Jharkhand after apparently being participants in a football match, killed a son of a former chief minister while being part of celebrations. Such activities cannot be successful without local support base. In areas under their control in the hills and jungles, the only government “machinery” available is the airwaves of All India Radio. There are no primary schools, no primary health centres or connecting roads. It is in these areas that the extreme left groups hold complete sway.

Earlier, the official word to denote extreme left activities was “menace”; today the Prime Minister used the term “virus”, more popular these days in IT than medicine. Dr Singh asked the states to develop a police force solely dedicated to combating the Maoists. But there are some in the Planning Commission who would point out that the naxalite ‘virus’ is not really a law and order problem but more the result of lack of development in 33 districts spread over eight states which have been identified as worst affected by Naxal activities. Most of them are in tribal areas. According to one count, as many as 165 districts in the country have some Naxal presence.

Many acknowledge that poverty and non-development of the regions were major reasons for the extreme left groups building up a support base. Rampant corruption and unresponsive bureaucracy along with feudal tendencies and no effort at land reforms help these groups gain an upper hand in the poverty-affected areas.

There has been stray efforts to take up special development projects in the affected areas but they have not gone very far as in the case of Operation Siddharth in Jehanabad in the mid-eighties to prevent the rebels from consolidating their base.
The merger of the CPI (ML) People’s War Group and the Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) after protracted talks to form Communist Party of India (Maoists) on 21 September 2004, has also given them a wider area of operation and better coordination of their activities.

The Statesman

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Chhattisgarh 12 cops still missing

Posted by Indian Vanguard on December 21, 2007

Raipur, Dec 21: A day after 12 policemen went missing from Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh, police today feared they might be abducted by the Maoists.

We fear the missing 12 policemen from Chhattisgarh to be abducted by Maoists after a fierce encounter, Dantewada police sources said.

A police party had reached the spot, where the security forces had an encounter with Naxals yesterday and could not find any of the policemen or any blood stains, which indicates that they are not injured and might have been taken hostage by the rebels, the sources said.

“Police parties from various destinations have started search operation to trace the missing policemen, who are missing after a fierce gun battle with the Naxals in Golapalli forest of Dantewada district, about 45 kms from the state capital,” Bastar Range Inspector General of Police Rajinder Kumar Vij said.

“We are yet to get any information about the missing policemen,” IG Anti-Naxal Operation Giridhari Nayak said.

When a 28-member police party was engaged in an anti-Naxal operation yesterday, they were attacked by Maoists in Golapalli jungle. First, the Naxals triggered landmine blasts and then opened indiscriminate firing on the police party which split them into small groups, sources said. After the incident, five policemen managed to reach the Golapalli police station, where as additional forces later rescued 11 security personnel from the forest, they said, adding, 16 policemen out of 28 have reported back yesterday to their base camp.

A total of 12 security personnel, including eight from Chhattisgarh Armed Force and four from the district forces, are still missing even a day after the gun battle, they said.

It was in Naxal-hit Dantewada on last Sunday that 300 prisoners, including 105 Naxalites, had escaped allegedly with the help of the jail officials. (Agencies)

Published: Friday, December 21, 2007

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