State’s missing youngsters have joined Maoists

GUWAHATI: At least 300 state youths who have been gone missing from their homes over the last two years are suspected to have joined the Maoists. Assam Police recently carried out the survey to track Maoists recruits in all districts of the state and came to a conclusion that these youngsters have joined the rebels. At present the Maoists in the state are guided by the Upper Assam Leading Committee with top leader Aditya Bora as its secretary. Bora, who was arrested in Jharkhand last year, was released on bail and since then he has jumped bail.

“There are about a hundred listed Maoists cadres in the state and it is very likely that the rebels have launched a recruitment drive. These 300-odd youths left their homes in the last two years mostly on the pretext of taking up jobs elsewhere. They have not communicated with their families ever since and are untraceable. There is good chance that they have gone underground as Maoist recruits,” a security source said.

The developments have been reported mostly in Kokrajhar, Baksa and Udalguri districts bordering Bhutan, Dhemaji, Tinsukia districts bordering Arunachal Pradesh and Golaghat and Sibsagar districts bordering Nagaland. The source added that most of these youths are from districts bordering Bhutan, Arunachal Pradesh in the north and Nagaland in the east. “A significant number of youths from Adivasi-dominated areas are also suspected to be among them,” the source added.

Unlike the pattern in other states, the initial recruits in Assam have mostly been from communities other than Adivasis. “The general trend in other states shows that recruits are mainly from marginalized groups of the population, but that has not been reflected yet in Assam. There is just a sprinkling of Adivasi youths among the listed cadres,” the source added.

“The Adivasis here live under relatively better condition than their brethren in Chattisgarh, Jharkhand or Orissa. The pattern so far seen here is wherever governance has failed and Ulfa is on the wane, Maoists have moved in. The Reds have also trained their eyes on mass protests for picking up potential cadres,” the source added.

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