Buoyed by a significant spurt in the surrender of Maoist cadres, particularly in the Bastar region of Chhattisgarh, the Union Home Ministry has advised all Naxal-hit States to ensure proper rehabilitation measures and implementation of welfare schemes to encourage others to shun violence. The latest government figures reveal that over 260 Naxals, including key military company commanders, have surrendered this year as against a total of 283 in 2013. Under the MHA’s rehabilitation policy, grants for surrender of a senior politburo member have been increased to Rs.20 lakh, Rs.18 lakh for the central committee member and Rs.16 lakh to a regional bureau member.
Centre wants Chhattisgarh police to take lead role in anti-Maoist operations
NEW DELHI: As the government works on a revised counter-Naxal doctrine, union Home Secretary Anil Goswami has convened a meeting with Chhattisgarh government brass and its DGP here on Thursday to discuss tightening of the state’s response against Left-wing extremism. Sources indicated that a dedicated action plan for fighting Maoists in Chhattisgarh will be discussed at the meeting, which will also see Goswami asking the state police to focus on taking the lead in planning pro-active counter-operations, particularly in Bastar region, while involving CRPF in their execution.
According to the union home ministry’s assessment, Chhattisgarh is second only to Jharkhand in the list of states worst affected by left-wing extremism (LWE). However, the operations initiated by the state police have been on the lower side this year. In fact, the slightly improved LWE indices of the state are largely attributed to operations planned and executed by the CRPF, with the state police playing a poor second fiddle and, in some cases, even declining to come on board. The home secretary, said ministry sources, is likely to impress upon the Chhattisgarh government to improve its counter-Naxal response by getting the ground level policing in order, stepping up intelligence gathering on Maoist activities and movement and taking the lead in planning counter-operations with the CRPF troops providing the boots on the ground.
“The police stations in the Naxal-infested Bastar region must be made fully functional and the local policemen should be involved more in the surgical strikes against Maoists….The operations must be planned by the police and the CRPF brought on board for their execution,” said a senior home ministry official. Chhattisgarh had witnessed 195 incidents of Naxal violence until July 31 this year, resulting in the deaths of 36 civilians and 37 security personnel. This is against 201 incidents, 46 civilian killings and 28 security personnel killings recorded in the corresponding period of 2013. While attacks on the police, including landmine blasts, were higher at 74 as compared to 57 in the first seven months of last year, as many as 302 Naxalites were arrested and 54 surrendered this year as against 223 arrests and 22 surrenders last year. A home ministry official claimed that most of these surrenders had been before the CRPF.
VISAKHAPATNAM: As the bauxite mining issue heats up, the Reds are reportedly planning to use the Manyam Pituri Sena (MPS) as a weapon to take on the cops and connect with tribals to fan the flames of the anti-bauxite struggle. According to sources, the Reds have chalked out plans to revive the MPS, which was initially set up in 2005-06 but has been dormant since, and use it to spearhead the tribal struggle against bauxite mining in the Visakha agency and expand operations in the entire Andhra-Odisha Border (AOB) area. The top AOB Special Zonal Committee (AOBSZC) leadership and the central committee has decided to seize the opportunity that the anti-bauxite struggle has offered the Maoists to stage a comeback in the AOB area, where they had been virtually wiped out thanks to the aggressive domination of the security forces over the past few years, sources said.
According to sources, the game plan is to set up one committee for members of every four to five villages, which translates into four or five committees for every gram panchayat and so on. These sena groups will be guided by the militia network and sympathisers of the banned outfit. The Reds are now busy recruiting tribal youth in the sena. While the initial target is to recruit around 500-800 youth, they are hopeful of the sena numbers swelling to thousands as the anti-bauxite struggles gathers pace. The Naxalites are hoping to use MPS to create awareness among tribal communities not only on bauxite mining but also on various other issues, galvanise mass participation against the state and intensify armed attacks, sources explained. While a senior cop involved in anti-naxal operations admitted to TOI on condition of anonymity that the MPS would be successful in infiltrating the tribals, he said it would not be possible to recruit them in thousands.
“There will an impact of the Maoists’ MPS as tribals are seeking support in their struggle against the government. MPS will definitely become a headache for the security forces. But I don’t think it will be possible for them to expand in a big way by recruiting thousands of youth into their rank and file,” he opined. Though the concept of Manyam Pituri Sena, which loosely translates into Agency rebellion army, was discussed at the division level and AOB Special Zonal Committee meetings of the Reds, it was officially announced during the 10 year celebrations of the People’s Liberation Guerilla Army (PLGA) in 2010. In fact, discussions held six years ago in the AOBSZC meeting chaired by Ramakrishna alias RK, the then secretary of AOBSZC, it was decided that the MPS members would carry traditional weapons like sickles, swords, bows and arrows and would also be given training in rifle shooting.
The concept of pituri sena is well entrenched among tribals with well-known revolutionary Alluri Seetharama Raju too forming a pituri sena to fight the British in the pre-independence era. Even before Seetharama Raju, there was a pituri sena led by Bhupathi in East Godavari and Visakhapatnam agency areas prior to the 1857 Sepoy Mutiny. “Pituri sena is the last hope for Maoists to regain their lost glory as many tribals are openly coming out against the government. This is the right time for Naxals to induct people into various committees and nurture them before including them in their main squads. So, they will not let go of this chance to strike back at the security forces and will make the most of it,” said an IPS officer with years of experience in anti-naxal operations.
Malaysia police arrest 42 foreigners after riot at export factory
KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysian police have arrested 42 men after a riot by up to 1,000 mostly Nepalese workers sparked fires and destroyed parts of an electronics export factory, highlighting accusations of poor conditions for many of the estimated four million foreign workers in the Southeast Asian country. The riot broke out in the southern industrial hub of Johor state on Tuesday at a factory run by JCY International , a Malaysian firm that makes parts for electronic giants including Samsung, Hitachi and Western Digital. Workers had accused the firm of negligence after an employee at a nearby JCY factory died last Thursday after complaining of chest pains, according to local news reports.
The unrest spilled over to the firm’s other factory in Kulaijaya, police said, culminating in a stand-off between riot police and protesters. The factory suspended operations on Wednesday. “This was caused by a misunderstanding between the employer and employees over the terms of their work,” the district’s deputy police chief, Mohad Idris Samsuri, told Reuters. Those arrested would be charged under the anti-rioting law, he said.
Namibia rocked as protester shot dead in rare political unrest
Windhoek (AFP) – A young woman was shot dead in Namibia on Wednesday in clashes between police and the children of fallen independence fighters, a rare incidence of political violence in the country. Frieda Ndatipo, 26, was killed during a demonstration calling for jobs in front of headquarters of the country’s ruling party, the South West Africa People’s Organization (SWAPO). Two police officers were also seriously injured. Ndatipo was one of the so-called “struggle kids” — a group of young Namibians who are calling on the government to employ them. Most of the group have parents who died in the guerrilla war for independence from South Africa, which ended in 1990.
Addressing parliament, Prime Minister Hage Geingob described Ndatipo’s death as “a highly tragic and regrettable event.” An AFP reporter saw Ndatipo’s body laying by the side of the road, as police cordoned off the area. Wearing pink jeans and a blood-soaked blue tee-shirt she appeared to have suffered a bullet wound to the upper left torso. Officers claimed that demonstrators had been armed with sticks and stones as well as firearms, but demonstrators denied the accusation.
Arab East Jerusalem seethes with protests and raids
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Violent protests in Israeli-occupied East Jerusalem have been raging nightly beyond the spotlight on the Gaza war, leading to a crackdown by Israeli police in which hundreds of Palestinians have been detained. Street clashes with police in riot gear, military-style raids on homes late at night and stone-throwing at Israeli vehicles have marked the most serious outbreak of violence in Jerusalem since a Palestinian uprising a decade ago. The protests erupted in July after the murder of a Palestinian teen in an alleged revenge attack by three Jews, who are standing trial. That followed the killing of three Israeli youths in the occupied West Bank by Hamas Islamist militants.
The seething tensions have underscored deepening divisions in a city that Israel claims as its “indivisible capital”. Damage caused by Palestinians to a Jerusalem light railway, which links Arab and Jewish neighborhoods and was once hailed by Israeli authorities as a symbol of coexistence, put a third of its carriages out of commission. Security sweeps across East Jerusalem have arrested more than 600 Palestinians, including 150 minors, according to the Israeli police. Most have since been released on bail or put under some form of restriction. Lawyers and family members say the raids resemble the military tactics of Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank, including doors being blown off hinges, rather than urban law enforcement.
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — A labor organization opposed to Argentine President Cristina Fernandez caused traffic jams and disrupted life for many in the capital Wednesday at the start of a 36-hour strike. Members of the Central Workers Union, which includes many public-sector employees, joined demonstrations that blocked major thoroughfares in Buenos Aires in a protest over taxes, wages and the overall cost of living in the country. Union members also called on the government to halt a wave of private-sector layoffs.
Farmers protest for third day in southeastern Turkey
Fire and barricades blocked the roads in the third day of farmers protesting their electricity and water being cut off in the southeastern districts of Derik and Kızıltepe, Mardin province, on Thursday. Residents of these districts were angered by the lack of water and electricity, taking to the streets in response. They have created large barricades of stones and tires, halting traffic and causing long queues of cars. Farmers from 170 villages in these districts have been blocking two sections of highway since Monday. Security forces have failed to negotiate the dismantling of these barricades with the protestors.
Having initially protested for several hours, the farmers went to the Turkish Electricity Transmission Company (TEİAŞ) building and entered by force. After the farmers and TEİAŞ officials had debated for some time, the farmers took to the Mardin-Kızıltepe highway that runs in front of the building, creating barricades of burning tires and stones. The farmers also removed the protective plates from the median strips and added these to the barricades. After a further seven hours of protests, gendarmerie forces and riot police were ordered to intervene. During the intervention, controversial footage was taken of a masked police officer cursing and shouting at the farmers. The security forces used tear gas and pressurized water cannons to disperse the protestors. This allowed traffic to pass through for a few hours, but protestors later returned and cut off the roads again.
Hundreds Block Kyrgyz Highway To Protest Mining Operations
Hundreds of residents of a village in northern Kyrgyzstan have blocked a highway to the capital, Bishkek, to demand an end to iron-ore mining in the area. A local official, Omur Nogoev, told RFE/RL that the protesters say mining by the RedMet Company could damage the environment. He put the number of protesters at 300, while activists said there were 800 people protesting near the village of Voznesenovka village in the Chui region. Dozens of vehicles have reportedly been stranded on the highway by the protest.
Two Naxals Involved in Jiram Valley Attack Arrested
Two dreaded Maoists allegedly involved in last year’s ghastly Jiram valley attack which killed 31 people including some Congress leaders, were today arrested in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Bastar district. A cache of explosives was also recovered from the ultras, police said. Acting on specific inputs, the cadres were apprehended by a joint team of district force and Central Reserve Police Force from a mobile check post under Darbha police station limits this evening, Bastar Superintendent of Police Ajay Yadav told PTI.
During the interrogation, the arrested rebels, identified as Sukhdev Naag (31) and Manjhiram Kashyap (32), natives of Tongpal police station limits in bordering Sukma district, revealed that they were among the cadres who targeted Congress convoy in Jiram valley, Yadav said. As per their statements, Sukhdev was in the group of armed rebels, who gunned down senior Congress leader Mahendra Karma and other Congressmen, while Manjhiram passed on crucial information regarding the movement of Congress convoy and security forces in the region ahead of executing the attack to military platoon of CPI (Maoist), the SP said.
Manjhiram also acted as an informer in dispensing key details about the movement of security personnel ahead of Tahakwada attack under Tongpal police station limits killing 15 security personnel and a civilian in March this year, he said. Notably, based on the statements of three ultras, including two women, who surrendered yesterday in Jagdalpur, the security personnel intensified its combing in the region to catch those local cadres who were involved in attack on Congress convoy in Jiram valley of Darbha. Meanwhile, Sukhdev and Manjhiram were nabbed while they were riding on a bike along with explosives between Darbha and Jiram camp of security personnel during checking of the vehicles, he said.
A two-kg IED (improvised explosives device) and Maoist pamphlets were seized from their bike. Apart from that, another 2-kg IED and pamphlets were also recovered from Sukhdev’s Tahakwada village, the SP said. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) which is probing the Jiram valley incident has been informed about the arrest of the cadres, the SP said, adding that, their interrogation may reveal crucial details in connection with other major Naxal incidents in Bastar region. In a separate search operation in Maoist-hit Kanker district today, a rebel was nabbed by a joint squad of Border Security Force and District Force from Rowghat police station limits.
The arrested jan militia member was involved in various criminal offences, including arson, brawl and torching vehicles. Moreover, he was allegedly helping Naxals in supply of commodities of daily use, installing posters and banners and others in the remote packets, Kanker Superintendent of Police R N Dash said.
Centre grants Rs 15 crore for STF training centre at Bodh Gaya
PATNA: The state has recently received Rs 15 crore from the Centre to construct an specialized training centre for the special task force (STF) at Bodh Gaya. The Union cabinet recently gave its approval to the home ministry’s plan to raise anti-Naxalite special forces in Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and Chhattisgarh on the lines of Greyhounds of Andhra Pradesh and sanctioned additional funds for the purpose. The state wing of the STF will train around 200 personnel in guerrilla warfare on the lines of the Greyhounds, a special police unit in Andhra Pradesh to fight the Left wing extremists and organized crime in the state. IG (operations) Sushil M Khopde said the central government would bear 75% of the total establishment cost of the Bodh Gaya centre while state government will contribute the rest 25%. Around 60 acre of land has been earmarked at Bodh Gaya for the centre. The tender process for purchasing all necessary items will start soon, he said.
“The project, known as Scheme for Special Infrastructure (SSI), will help the STF beef up the forces to combat against the Left wing extremism as well as organized crime in various parts of the state,” said the IG, adding, “We will train around 50 police personnel at a time. The personnel will be chosen from Bihar police and applications of self-nominees will also be considered.” Khopde said those in the special task force take basic training at the Patna STF centre which is not up to the mark. “We send personnel to Andhra Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh to get upgraded trainings,” he said. The Bodh Gaya centre should be self-sufficient in all respects, operationally and tactically. The STF should be capable of reaching inaccessible, remote forest areas in the shortest possible time and conduct swift operations. Funds to the tune of Rs 280 crore will be disbursed to these four states by the home ministry under its ongoing SSI. Part of the sum will also be used to upgrade infrastructure of Andhra Pradesh police and its Greyhounds.
Jharkhand’s ‘most-wanted’ Maoist arrested in Kutch
AHMEDABAD: A ‘most-wanted’ Maoist, who was involved in 2012 Bhandariya thana attack case in Jharkhand, was arrested in Mundra Port area in Kutch district on Wednesday, police said. “A member of insurgent group Communist Party of India (Maoist) Devendra alias Vishalji Ambika Paswan, a resident of Bauliya village in Garhwah district of Jharkhand, was arrested today,” superintendent of police, Kutch West, D N Patel said. Paswan was nabbed from his brother’s place in Mundra port area in a joint operation of special operation group (SOG), local crime branch and Mundra police, said Patel.
The ultra, a sub-zonal commander in the Maoist group, was involved in the January 2012 land-mine blast case, which had claimed lives of 14 policemen in Bhandariya police station area of Garwah district of Jharkhand, Patel said. During the attack, a group led by Paswan also looted weapons of police and used them in anti-national operations, the SP said, adding, later in February they again attacked a police patrolling party and looted arms.
Bengal, Jharkhand police launch anti-Maoist op in Ghatshila
Jamshedpur: East Singhbhum and West Bengal police have jointly launched an inter-state combing operation in the Maoist den of Ghatshila subdivision following intelligence reports about presence of hardcore rebels in the forest areas along the border between the two states. Launching off the operation on Tuesday, the home district police informed that intelligence reports about the presence of Sachin Ji and Rahul Ji, the two Maoist squad leaders identified by their aides, have prompted the police to launch inter-state operation.
“Along with Sachin and Rahul, movement of some other Maoist rebels in some suspected areas bordering Bengal have been reported and a joint combing operation with Bengal police has been launched,” said Rural SP Shailendra Kumar. Kumar made it a point to mention that there have been no reports of Fogra Munda’s presence in the Ghatshila subdivision. Munda, accused of over dozen criminal cases, including murder of Jamua Gram Pradhan Lakhan Murmu, escaped from the Ghatshila subdivisional court in March, when he was about to board the police van after a hearing related to one of the murder cases.
Police sources said the joint operation will include a manhunt in Midnapore and Purulia districts of West Bengal and Chakulia, Ghorabandha, Shyamsunderpur and Dhalbhumgarh police station areas in Jharkhand. “The porous border between Chakulia (in Jharkhand) and Belpahari (in Midnapore) has often been used by Maoists, We are concentrating largely on this area that has a dense forest cover,” they said. Odisha’s Mayurbhanj district, which that shares its border with Jharkhand, is also under the watchful eyes of the district police. “Joint operations with Bengal have been carried out in the past whenever the situation warranted,” said Kumar, adding that the operation will continue for the next couple of days.
‘Government Waging War Against Maoists at the Behest of Corporates’
President of the Viplava Rachayitala Sangham and convenor of the Forum for Alternative Politics Varavara Rao, in an interview with Anil Kumar, speaks about the ‘Janata Sarkar’ being implemented in the Dandakaranya region and the Maoist movement in the country.
Q: What was the reason for floating the Forum for Alternative Politics?
A: The Forum for Alternative Politics was formed to unite all forces revolting against the global development model and to solve long-standing problems being faced by various sections of society. The forum will provide an alternative to existing politics.
Q: Is transition from the present political scenario to your proposal possible?
A: Certainly. In fact it is not transition but a revolution. We want to replicate the ‘Janata Sarkar’ concept which had been executed successfully in parts of the Dandakaranya region. The Peoples’ War Group (PWG) are constructing cement and concrete roads, setting up schools and providing medical facilities to tribals in the interior pockets of Bastar district of Chattisgarh. They are promoting ‘self-rule’ in these hamlets.
Q: At a time when the Communist movement is losing its sheen and has become weak in the country, will your proposed alternative gain acceptance?
A: Definitely. Communists have become weak not the revolutionists. In fact, they have emerged stronger in the last ten years. Maoist leadership is approaching the situation with a three-pronged strategy of creating awareness among suppressed sections in tribal belts, enhancing mass participation against the state and intensifying armed attacks. The party is already working towards liberating Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, parts of Orissa, Bihar and West Bengal. We believe that the Communists have been implementing neo-liberal policies. The CPM government in West Bengal had been implementing new economic policies for 30 years. We fought against them too.
Q: With the Modi government at the Centre, are you expecting any change in the Maoist policy?
A: Not at all. In fact, the Modi government is planning to launch a full-scale war against Maoist rebels and the people led by them in different parts of the country. The Centre has deployed large contingents of security personnel in parts of Central and Eastern India, including Chhattisgarh, Orissa and Jharkhand. The Modi government is building a war-hysteria against Maoist rebels regardless of the fact that the attack would be directed against some of the most deprived people of the country. Indeed, this is turning into a war of the state against its own people.
The government’s impending war to evict tribal people from their villages is actually being fought at the behest of some big corporate bodies who want to control and plunder our resources. It is high time that we recognize this pattern of waging war in which poor fight on both sides and the benefits only reach capitalists and their supporters in the government. We can expect violent conflicts in the coming days between government forces and the Maoists.
Q: The TRS government recently announced that it would allot three acres of land and other benefits to the landless poor. Are these measures sufficient to alleviate poverty?
A: Our perspective is entirely different from what the TRS government is planning to do. They are planning to buy lands from landlords and distribute them among the landless. Whereas, our concept is to take back those lands which were illegally occupied by landlords and corporate bodies and distribute them free of cost to the landless poor. If one buys land and distributes it among the poor, only the landlords will stand to benefit and not the poor. Telanagana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao claims that his government had spent `142 crore to acquire 10,000 acres of land. The government should disclose from where and whom it had purchased the land.
Q: Your opinion on handing over of law and order of Hyderabad to the Governor and Polavaram?
A: We strongly oppose according special powers to the Governor on revenue and law and order of Hyderabad as it would indirectly empower to the Centre to control the common capital. KCR, by inviting big corporate bodies to invest in Telangana, was implementing the World Bank’s agenda. Telangana is a agrarian society and KCR is trying to convert it into Singapore which is neither possible nor advisable. KCR has sacrificed the interest of tribals for the sake of Telangana by allowing the merger of seven mandals of Bhadrachalam division of Khammam district into Andhra Pradesh. We are not in favour of projects which allow large-scale submergence of tribal areas.
Q: Are you expecting support from the general public for your new initiative?
A: Certainly. The people are with us. They will definitely welcome our initiative as we are promoting self-rule and more powers to landless and oppressed sections of society.
Myanmar Workers Burn Car, Damage Factory During JB Riot
KULAIJAYA – A group of Myanmar foreign workers set ablaze a Proton Iswara Aeroback and damaged a factory in a riot at Desa Perindustrian Kulai 2, Kelapa Sawit here this morning. It is learnt that the group of foreign workers had a misunderstanding with the management and went on a riot at 11.20am. In the incident, the factory’s front facade was damaged, while a Proton Iswara Aeroback was set ablaze and turned upside down. The Fire and Rescue Services Department was immediately despatched to the scene and the fire was under control at 11.38am.
Addressing a press meet in Tansen of Palpa district organized by Revolutionary Journalists’ Association, August 25, 2014, Chairman Mohan Baidya Kiran of Nepal Communist Party-Maoist claimed that his party will take on to the revolt path if the parties represented in the CA promulgate the constitution by ignoring political forces not represented in the present constituent assembly.
“We will take on the revolt if the parties promulgate the constitution by ignoring parties outside the CA,” he said and added, “We may decide to use force in our movement. It all depends on the government now.” “Our revolt will thus liberate the countrymen,” he said. He said, “An all party conference is the only solution to resolve issues confronting the nation.”
KATHMANDU, AUG 26 – The Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (Taan) on Monday condemned the All Nepal Revolutionary Tourism Workers’ Union (ANRTWU) for threatening to send back tourists handled by four particular travel agencies. The ANRTWU, which is affiliated with the CPN-Maoist, had written to the Indian, Danish, American and German embassies in Kathmandu on August 15 that it would prevent tourists handled by Explore Himalaya Travel Adventure, Himalaya Expedition, Peak Promotion and Himalaya Guide Nepal from touring in Nepal. The threat has come right before the start of Nepal’s peak tourist season that begins in September.
The period September-November accounts for more than 35 percent of the tourist arrivals to Nepal, and most of them go trekking in the Himalayan foothills. Taan told a press meet on Monday that its serious attention had been drawn to the warning saying that the act would have dire consequences on the country’s tourism. “We have written to the embassies not to take the issue seriously as it would be settled through a discussion,” said Taan’s President Ramesh Dhamala.
The ANRTWU issued the warning to press its demand for a raise and reinstatement of their cadres removed from their jobs. Dhamala said that on October 1, 2012, Taan and the workers unions had reached an agreement to hike the daily wages of guides and other workers. The agreement was implemented from January 1, 2013. Besides hiking the daily wages, Taan has also set up a workers welfare trust and fully implemented the Labour Act.
“The sudden agitation launched by the ANRTWU has terrorized the industry,” he said. “As most of the trekking agencies are not able to employ workers on a permanent basis, we are working to sort out the issue through a dialogue.” The Labour Act says that workers who have been working regularly at an organization for 240 days have a right to obtain permanent status. Suman Pandey, president of Explore Himalaya and the Pacific Asia Travel Association (Pata) Nepal Chapter, said he was issued an ultimatum by the ANRTWU to reinstate one of the workers who had quit three years ago to a permanent position. “The way the ANRTWU has announced the agitation targeting particular firms with unreasonable demands has created fear and disharmonized the working environment in the industry,” Pandey added.
BEIRUT: Energy Minister Arthur Nazarian Monday called on striking contract workers to end the “riots” and “militia activities,” warning of further electricity cuts due to the labor action and a possible clash with Electricite du Liban employees. “What is happening today at Electricite du Liban is a clear assault on the law, the institution and the sovereignty of the Lebanese state,” Nazarian said in a news conference held at the ministry. “Closing EDL and preventing employees and executives from entering their place of work and doing their jobs is a penal offense prohibited by the law,” he added. Nazarian urged some 2,000 people employed by private service providers to “give up the riots because they do not bring any good, and they represent an occupation of EDL by affecting the company’s ability to function.”
Kurdish Militants Kidnap 3 Chinese Engineers In Southeastern Turkey
Three Chinese engineers working in Turkey’s southeastern province of Sirnak were kidnapped by militants of the outlawed Kurdish Worker’s Party, or PKK, on Saturday, China’s state-run Xinhua reported Monday, citing Turkish news agency Dogan. The engineers were reportedly kidnapped from a shop in the town of Silopi, which lies on the Turkish border between Iraq and Syria, by PKK militants armed with long-barreled weapons. The militants then went on to attack a power plant construction site operated by China Machinery Engineering Corporation at the foot of Mount Cudi in Silopi district, Xinhua reported.
The Chinese embassy has reportedly “asked the Turkish government to go all out to rescue the missing Chinese workers while enhancing security measures for Chinese enterprises and employees in the country,” Reuters reported, citing a Xinhua report, adding that the Turkish military has launched an operation to locate and rescue the kidnapped engineers. In recent months, protests have erupted against the second planned power station in Silopi, which is being constructed by privately-owned Silopi Park Electricity, Reuters reported, citing local news agency Firat, adding that there has been no immediate claim of responsibility for the kidnappings or the attack.
Iran: Bafgh Iron Ore Mine workers protest continues
NCRI- Miners at Bafgh Iron Ore mine in Iran and their members of families continue to protest arrest of co-workers by gathering outside governor’s office in city of Bafgh in Yazd province. Some 5,000 Iranian mine workers went on strike on Tuesday in central province of Yazd demanding the release of nine of workers who had been arrested by the State Security Forces. The forces had planned to arrest other workers who also had been involved in a 40 day strike in May.
May strike ended after the authorities pledged to meet their demand. The worker wanted the plans for transferring 28.5 percent of the mine’s share to private sector be cancelled. The workers and their families, who form the half of the population of Bafgh, demanded that the profit from the shares be spent on improving the living conditions in the city. Striking workers also had demanded the resignations of the mine’s director and that workers receive job security guarantees. The strike ended when the governor of the province promised their demands would be met within 2 month. The deadline is reaching in few day while none of the workers demands have been met.
Thousands Protest ‘Man-Made Disaster’ in City in Eastern China
Thousands in Lishui City of eastern China protested a “man-made disaster” on Aug. 21, demanding compensation. So far, the authorities suppressed the protests and have not responded to the demands. Heavy rains from Aug. 18-20 caused the water level of the Ou River in Lishui City in the coastal province of Zhejiang to rise drastically. On Aug. 20, water was unexpectedly released from the Jinshuitan Reservoir, resulting in heavy flooding. Lishui City and nearby counties were flooded with water as deep as 4 meters (approximately 13 feet). On the morning of Aug. 21, thousands of residents showed up in front of the local government building demanding compensation. In the afternoon, residents were holding up banners that read:
“The Government Cared Nothing about the People and Their Properties—Releasing Water before Announcement—Should be Responsible”; “It Wasn’t a Torrential Flood. It Wasn’t a Tsunami. Lishui City Is Submerged in Water Because of Negligence for Human Life and Property. It Was a Man-made Disaster.” In the evening, thousands of residents blocked roads leading to Shuidong Bridge. They were met with special and military police forces. “My friends went to the protest. They told me that there were 20 thousand people at most,” said Mr. Wang, a resident in Liandu District, Lishui City. “Later, police moved in and started suppressing the protestors. Many people were injured.”
Maoist links: Bombay HC quashes Saibaba’s bail plea
The Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court has rejected the bail application of Delhi University professor G N Saibaba, under arrest since May for his alleged Maoist links. Justice Sunil Shukre , while rejecting the argument of Saibaba that he couldn’t be branded a Maoist or even a sympathizer only on the basis of the resemblance of his social activism with Maoist ideology, said a prima facie case exists against him for involvement in Maoist activities and for his being a prominent and important Maoist leader, according to Government Pleader Bharti Dangre. Saibaba also cited his physical disability as ground for bail. That too wasn’t held valid by the court, according to Dangre.
His lawyer Surendra Gadling said, “we argued that mere resemblance of social activism to Maoist ideology isn’t ground enough to brand him a sympathiser or a Maoist. Also, we said the police don’t have sufficient material to substantiate their claim.” On court’s rejection of the disability ground, Gadling said, “the court accepted the police argument that he was being provided adequate assistance, facilities and medicines.”
Naxal threat: Red corridor expanding in Maharashtra, Odisha and Telangana
Even as the Narendra Modi’s government readies a new anti-Maoist doctrine, Maoist seems to be gaining ground in the districts of Maharashtra and Odisha, where they had considerably diminished under the previous regime. As per the half yearly report of the Central Intelligence Committee, accessed by India Today, the district of Gadchiroli in Maharashtra which was once cited by the Manmohan Singh government as the model for other Left Wing affected States has witnessed mass killings.
There were 44 incidents reported in which 22 lives including that of civilians were lost in 2014 as compared to 40 incidents and 8 deaths in 2013 during the same period, the report states. The red corridor has also made new inroads into the newly carved state of Telangana and renamed themselves as Telangana State Committee (TSC) replacing the erstwhile North Telangana Special Zone Committee (NTSZC). Similarly, Odisha has witnessed a surge with 65 incidents and 13 killings in 2014 as against 40 and 10 deaths in 2013. The note further remarks, “The CPI (Maoist) continues to maintain its dominance in the Koraput, Malkangiri and Rayagada districts of southern Odisha.”
The report also states that only 37 Naxals were killed in the first half of the year as compared to 52 last year during the same period. “The period witnessed increasing attacks on police post with 93 incidents in 2014 as compared to 65 such attacks during the corresponding period in 2013,” it stated. However, it was suggested in the report that overall violence has “marginally” declined with 597 incidents being reported from LWE areas as compared to 593 in 2013. The committee headed by cabinet secretary Ajit Lal also observed that security forces suffered set back on during the Maoist’s annual tactical counter offensive campaign (TCOC) which coincided the Lok Sabha elections.
“There were two major attacks one in Chhattisgarh in which 15 security personnel and a civilian were killed and another in Maharashtra in which seven policemen were killed. During this year TCOC, 26 weapons were lost by the policemen as against the target of 100,” the report stated. As per the report, the arrest and surrender of top Maoist cadres is also the reason of worry for the Maoist as the outfit discussed the decline in number of youth cadres. The deficiencies which were noted during the Maoist leaders meeting included, “desertion of cadres and increase in non-proliferation tendencies in both the party and the PLGA as well as in the People’s Revolutionary Committee. It was admitted that a bureaucratic approach towards people was eating at the base of party’s support among the people. This in turn has led to a decline in the recruitment, particularly in the Western and Northern region” it was noted in the report.
VISAKHAPATNAM: Trouble seems to be brewing for security forces in Visakhapatnam district going by the huge turnout of tribals at an anti-bauxite mining meeting organized by the banned CPI Maoist party on the Andhra-Odisha Border (AOB) on Saturday. Nearly 800 people from 25 villages attended the meeting organized by the Adivasi Viplava Raitu Cooli Sangham and Manyam Pituri Senathat, allegedly led by the Galikonda area committee secretary Gopala Krishna alias Azad and senior leader Krishna, who was reportedly sent to Dandakaranya. Though the main Maoist leaders were not visible, sources said they supervised the meeting with the help of active cadres and militia members.
The four-hour long meeting, held under the watchful eye of armed cadres covering the 4-5 km stretch from the venue, demanded that the government to withdraw its decision to mine bauxite reserves in Visakha Agency, failing which people would retaliate with a militant struggle. Such a big meeting was last conducted by the Maoists two years ago in the Korukonda area of Visakha Agency. That meeting was supervised by the east division committee member Narender, who was killed in an encounter in Koraput district on March 5 this year. It may be recalled that the Maoists killed a tribal of Killamkota colony in G Madugula mandal in the district on Thursday night by branding him a police informer.
According to sources, one of the Maoists, who addressed the tribals, said that with the government trying to loot the natural resources of the tribal areas, it was high time they gave a befitting reply to the government if it went ahead with the proposed mining. Those addressing the meeting asked the people to take up an armed struggle against the government and corporate giants like Jindal and AnRak as mining would prove costly for tribals even if it was done through ITDA or APMDC (Andhra Pradesh Mineral Development Corporation) because it would be sold to the same companies. They demanded that all mining licences be cancelled.
Alleging that ultimately tribals would lose their rights on forests, land and water sources, Maoists urged them to join the Manyam Pituri Sena in large numbers. Even people led by the Red guerillas raised their voice against the proposed bauxite mining during the meeting and announced that they were preparing themselves to take up an armed struggle against the state government. According to sources, the latest meeting indicates that Maoists are going all out to regain their lost glory through the bauxite issue, said sources.
The Members of the banned CPI (Maoist) reportedly organised a meeting at Garikabanda, a village bordering G. K. Veedhi and Koyyuru mandal, on Saturday, opposing bauxite mining proposed by the TDP government. According to sources, local area commander of Korukonda committee Jamri convened the meeting, which was attended by over 500 villagers and sympathisers. Nearly 30 Maoists and an equal number of militia members were present.
A unanimous decision was taken to oppose the proposed mining and that, if required, villagers would support the Maoists in an armed conflict with the authorities. The Maoists have been opposing the bauxite mining in the Agency area, ever since it was proposed by the TDP government during its earlier stint (1999-2004).
NEW DELHI: After 40 long years, the spectre of red terror looms over Kerala. And unlike in the past, efforts to contain a possible Maoist rampage are falling far short of what is the need of the hour. Facing the heat in Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand, the red terrorists are making forays into Kerala—the focus being on the three districts of Malappuram, Wayanad and Kannur—in a bid to find a safe haven. A latest intelligence report reveals that the banned outfit is gradually expanding cadre strength in the tribal dominated region on the border of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
A senior intelligence officer said an assessment was launched by the Centre after Maoist leader Sinoj alias Ramesan was accidently killed while making IEDs at a Naxal hideout near the Karnataka border in June. The intelligence operatives came to know about the death only in July, triggering panic in the security establishment. Sinoj, who was also member of the Kerala state committee of the CPI (Maoist), was trained in Jharkhand in 2010.
Subsequently, he was entrusted with the responsibility of raising a guerrilla unit to dominate Tri-junction. Although the political leadership in Kerala has taken steps to flush out Maoists, intelligence officials said the police approach in dealing with the serious security issue was disheartening. “Several inputs provided by the intelligence agencies to check Maoist penetration in the region was not acted upon. Naxalites, who earlier possessed country-made pistols, now have acquired AK-47s from Naxal’s Technical Research Arms Manufacturing (TRAM) unit in Chhattisgarh. Though, dedicated armed cadre remain around 20-25, there is input suggesting more sympathisers are joining the outfit,” the officer added.
But, state police officers reject Central charges claiming that the anti-Maoist operations are going on in full swing and the state police is maintaining close tie ups with locals to monitor suspicious activities. “Police are maintaining a close rapport with the tribes living deep in the forest. We hope we can trap the armed persons roaming in the forest through them,” said Deputy Superintendent of Police Perinthalmanna, who is in charge at police stations covering Nilambur forest region.
However, State Police Intelligence Unit conceded that ultras held a training camp in July first week in the Nilambur forest region in Malappuram district, hardly a week after state Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala told the Assembly about Maoist presence in the forest region of Malabar. Police officers claimed the local tribals had earlier identified a most-wanted Maoists leader when photographs were shown to them.
This further bolsters the Centre’s claims which suggested that Maoist have already set up camps in north Karnataka and were opening up a jungle route connecting the three states operations under Western Ghats Special Zonal Committee (WGSZC). “Maoists sympathisers have grown in the last 6 months, especially after merger of CPI Maoists and CPI-ML (Naxalbari) in May, 2014. CPI-ML (Naxalbari) is active in the state and we have noticed that a well- planned strategic campaign by distributing pamphlets, literature and other materials to lure local tribals into their fold,” intelligence sources said.
The report has also pointed out a supply-route between Maoists cadres in the three districts of Kerala and the outfit’s base in Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, Raichur and Bellary of Karnataka where ultras have been active for over a decade. The report also named Revolutionary Democratic Front (RDF) as the brain behind Maoist propaganda in Kerala and Karnataka besides other offshoots. Kerala was first penetrated by the Maoists in the late 60s and early 70s when Waynad became the foundation ground for Red Movement with K Ajitha, a Maoist leader and then the face of left-wing extremism in Kerala taking the charge of guerrilla movement in the forest region. Ajitha actively participated in guerrilla attack and was part of the team which attacked Pulpally police station in Waynad in late 1968. In the 1980s, the Naxalite movement was considerably weakened in the state but it remain the fertile ground for Maoists recruitments.
Security personnel unearthed an ammunition dump used by Naxals and recovered two firearms in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Kanker district on Sunday, police said. “On a tip-off, a joint team of district police force and Border Security Force (BSF) seized two single-barrel shot guns (SBSG) from the hilly terrain of Nalkasa and Kumudkatta region under Lohattar police station limits bordering Rajnandgaon district,” Kanker SP RN Dash said.
Raipur, Aug 24 (PTI) A CRPF jawan was injured in a gun-battle between security forces and ultras in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Bijapur district, police said today. The jawan received bullet injuries in the face-off that occurred in the restive Lingapur forest under Basaguda police station limits late last evening, a senior police official said. A team of paramilitary forces was mobilised from Bijapur for an anti-Naxal operation in the interiors of Basaguda in south Bastar.
PATNA: Three members of the CPI (Maoist) were arrested from Jamal Road under Kotwali police station area on Saturday. Two of them were members of Bihar, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh special area committee of the CPI (Maoist) and the third was its zonal commander of the Son Ganga Vindhyachal committee. Patna SSP Manu Maharaaj said, “We received information about some members of the CPI (Maoist) assembled near the Chiryatand overbridge to commit some crime. A special police team led by ASP (operations) Anupam Kumar conducted a raid there and arrested the trio. The three admitted that they were instrumental in the killing of the 16 members of the Tritiya Prastuti Committee (TPC) in Jharkhand on August 8 this year.” The zonal commander was identified as Shambhu Kumar alias Sunil ji alias Lambu ji, a native of Kushi Nagar in Uttar Pradesh.
Shambhu is accused in over a dozen of murder, extortion, kidnapping and Arms Act cases lodged in different districts. The other two members were identified as Sanjay Kumar of Jehanabad and Sunil Singh of Patna. “Police seized 25 detonators, one compass, nine mobile phones, SIM cards, three radio, Rs 25,000, medicines and Maoist literature from their possession. Shambhu has been associated with the organization since 1994,” the SSP added. “A white coloured luxury car going toward Chiryatand overbridge was stopped on Jamal Road. There were four persons in the car, including driver Laxman Yadav of Rohtas. He was released after police interrogation but the car was seized. They also told us that they used to bag contracts for constructions from local companies and those refusing to award contract to them had to cough up huge amount as levy,” said ASP Anupam Kumar.
Raipur: Three naxals, including a woman cadre, were on Saturday arrested from different places in Bastar region of Chhattisgarh, police said. “While one ultra was nabbed from Dantewada district, two others were picked from Kanker district,” DIG (SIB) Dipanshu Kabara told a news agency over phone. The naxal arrested from Dantewada is identified as Sanna Sodhi alias Sannu (38) and is suspected to have been involved in the attack in 2010 at the house of Congress leader Avdhesh Gautam.
“Sannu is also a close confidant of the commander of Malangir Area Committee, Deva. He was allegedly involved in triggering blasts at Kuakonda tehsil office and in a bus in Chingavaram,” Kabara said. Meanwhile, in a separate incident a joint squad of BSF and district police force arrested two ultras, identified as Umeshwari and Ramji from forest near Bhainsasur village in Kanker district. The duo have cases of arson, attempt to murder etc. registered against them in various police stations, Kabara said.
NEW DELHI: As home ministry officials go back to the drawing board to reshape contours of the anti-Naxal policy, there are indications of a tweaking of all existing schemes and initiatives in Left-wing extremism (LWE) areas. Some key proposals are allowing more flexibility to the home ministry to revise guidelines and update list of districts and items covered under the security-related expenditure (SRE) reimbursement scheme and empowering CRPF to restructure its dynamics to suit requirements of the LWE grid.
The revised draft anti-Naxal doctrine, which will be circulated to the affected states for their comments before being put up for Cabinet approval, will also propose raising of monetary incentive for surrenders by Naxal cadres as well as announcement of higher bounties by NIA on top CPI(Maoist) leaders. The draft of the new Naxal rehabilitation, surrender, neutralization, solatium and reward policy is ready, according to sources.
As of now, a surrendered higher-ranking Naxal leader gets Rs 2.5 lakh as an immediate grant and Rs 4,000 per month for 36 months. Importantly, the Centre, as part of its revised anti-Naxal policy, will bat for restructuring of CRPF to suit requirements of the LWE grid. This may entail autonomy for the CRPF to work out its own dynamics rather than turn to the home ministry for approval of the slightest change in organizational framework.
Earlier this year, CRPF had proposed a restructuring plan envisaging a single command system in conjunction with the area of responsibility. This, according to CRPF, was necessary as the concentration of troops in Naxal areas, northeast and J&K had resulted in group centres and range offices being far away from the battalions. The revised counter-Naxal doctrine may propose a standing mechanism comprising the home minister and chief minister of affected states to periodically review anti-Naxal policy.
The other initiatives that may see an overhaul are the scheme for special infrastructure (SIS) in LWE districts, under which funds are released to set up infrastructure for Greyhounds-like special forces and strengthen approach roads to police stations. The utilization of additional funds provided in this year’s budget for police modernization and implementation of scheme for construction and strengthening fortification of police stations will also be improved upon.
A central action plan to fight Maoists had recently suggested an advanced mine detection system, in use in Afghanistan, to tackle IED threats from the ultras. It recommended that CRPF’s Institute of IED Management, Pune, study the AN/PSS 14, developed by US-based L3 Cyterra, and make suggestions. Another idea is to focus on 35-40 worst-affected districts and reward the IAS/IPS officers who do good work there with preferential postings and foreign assignments. Taking a leaf out of Punjab’s success in beating Sikh militancy, the action plan suggests that a single IG/DIG exercise command over both the state police and central forces to ensure better coordination. Besides, inter-state border junctions in select places like Jamui-Giridih and Sukma-Malkangiri may be placed under the jurisdiction of DIG/commandants of central forces.
….The doctrine aims to set some ground-rules — like no talks with Maoists unless in a bleak scenario where they lay down arms, going after the top Maoist leadership by dedicated security teams, pushing in more security forces into worst-affected areas like Bastar and political commitment from all Maoist-affected states to eradicate the Left-wing extremism. A senior IB official told ET that the anti-Maoist doctrine will soon be circulated to all Maoist-affected states by the ministry for their comments and consent and subsequently an “in-principle approval” of the same will be sought from the Cabinet.
“Once the doctrine is in place, any wavering from it by any state will mean costs – in terms of funds being sent to the state to fight Maoists being curtailed,” a home ministry official said. BJP had earlier criticised the UPA government for not having a uniform anti-Maoist policy. Bihar has lately differed with the Centre’s stance against Maoists. The IB official said Singh has wished for an aggressive approach to eradicate Maoists after a recent presentation to him that said the violence levels were lowest in the last 14 years and Maoists were facing serious challenges like “decline of their base, loss of leadership, ideological dilution, increased desertions and weakening of urban movement”.
The presentation put the strength of CPI (Maoist) at 6,000 armed cadres and 36,000 Jan Militia and said they held 4,000 regular and 6,000 country-made weapons. It also pointed out that Sukma and Bijapur in Chhattisgarh and Gadhchirolli in Maharashtra were the worst-affected and the main hub of CPI (Maoist) and needed to be targeted. South Chhattisgarh is the “fountain-head” of Maoism with presence of large Maoist armed formations and location of the top leadership, it added. The presentation said the operations had yielded improved results “only in” Maharashtra and Odisha and that Bihar and Jharkhand had a “poor performance”.
Among other concerns flagged off to the home minister were “movement of large groups of armed Maoist cadres, massive collection of funds through extortion, inability of the security forces to take on large armed groups, heavy security force casualties in IED blasts and administrative vacuum in large areas.” Singh was also told that Maoists were planning to intensify guerilla and mine warfare against security forces, develop a second line of leadership and focus on issues of “Jal, Jungle and Zameen.” He was told Maoists planned more abductions — followed by short negotiations and killings of abductees if demands were not met.
In a major catch a top Maoist, involved in several naxal-related incidents in Bihar, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, was on Saturday arrested along with three accomplices, police said. Shambhuji alias Sunil Kumar alias Lambuji, member of Special area committee of the banned outfit in Bihar, Jharkhand and Chhtisgarh, was arrested from Gandhi Maidan police station area here, a press release from the office of Senior Superintendent of Police Manu Maharaj said.
Acting on a tip off, the city police netted him with three aides when he had come here to collect levy money, the release added. The three others arrested were Sanjay Kumar, Sunil Singh and Lakshaman Yadav. ‘Shambhu ji’ was involved in brutal massacre of 16 members of TPC (Third Presentation Committee) in Jharkhand on August 8 this year, the release said. Several cases of loot, murder and extortion have been listed against him in the three states. A total of 25 detonators, 3 Chinese make radio sets, medicines to make someone unconscious besides Rs 25,000 were recovered from him, it said.
VISAKHAPATNAM: After a nearly four-month lull, Maoists struck in the Visakha Agency again, killing a tribal at Killamkota in the mandal on Thursday night. However, the news came to light only on Friday evening after a villager came to the mandal headquarters and revealed the incident. The deceased was identified as 35-year-old farm labour B Balaraju. According to sources, a group of armed personnel allegedly entered the Killamkota colony, a Maoist stronghold area located around 30 km from the mandal headquarter, and dragged Balraju out of his house. They took him to the nearby village of Cherukubanda at around 7 pm where they opened fire at him.
Sources said after killing Balaraju the Reds told the villagers that he had been killed because he was a police informer and warned the other villagers with dire consequences if they informed the police. When contacted, police officials said they had no information about the incident so far as no one had lodged a complaint in this regard. A senior police official said the killing may have been prompted by the need of the Maoists to show their presence in the districtby terrorising people to carry out the ongoing anti-bauxite agitation.