Naxals expanding Red Corridor in South India

BANGALORE: The South Western Regional Bureau (SWRB) of the Naxal movement has decided to extend its activities from Western Ghats to the Eastern Ghats through Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, thus expanding the Red Corridor.

Sources in the Internal Security Division of the state said one Kuppuswamy of Tamil Nadu is heading the SWRB and plans to extend Naxal activities in south India. Though Naxals are active in Andhra Pradesh, their influence in Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu has been limited. However, they have begun ground work to spread Naxalism in Karnataka.

In Karnataka, Naxalites are confined to Shimoga, Chikmagalur, Udupi and Dakshina Kannada districts. Then they had extended their activities in three more districts including Hassan, Kodagu and Chamarajanagarh. The idea of spreading their activities to these districts is to link the Western Ghats and Eastern Ghats in their Red Corridor, an officer added.

There is information that Naxals are working on spreading their activities in Wayanad district of Kerala, Nilgiris and Krishnagiri districts of Tamil Nadu. Kodagu, Hassan (Sakaleshpur forest) and Chamarajanagar (Male Mahadeshwara Hills) will help link the Western and Eastern Ghats via Wayanad and Nilgiris forests, he added.

Kuppuswamy, the commander of SWRB has planned the extension idea as the Central Committee of Maoist Communists has decided to extend their activities in 200 districts all over India with a force of 20,000 armed cadre.

In the four districts of Karnataka, they have reached the second stage of their operation, including “latent” or “organisation phase” (open up movement, study the problems of the area and localities, organising and recruitment) and Red Resistance phase (building the movement by intimidation, violent activities etc). Third and fourth phases, which include forming armed troops, teaching villagers to use firearms and civilian war) hasn’t begun yet, another officer with the Anti Naxal force said.

Naxals are active with the first phase in Hassan, Kodagu, Chamarajanagar, Wayanad, Niligiris and Krishnagiri districts but police are keeping close tabs on their activities.

Though there seems to be a lull in Naxal activities in the state, a resurgence cannot be ruled out.


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