Separate intelligence wing on anvil for Karnataka
BANGALORE: Karnataka is all set to get a dedicated intelligence cadre on the lines of the Intelligence Bureau, an idea mooted at several forums in the past. “The proposal to create a separate intelligence cadre was conceived to deal with rising terrorism, Naxalism and other civil and criminal disturbances. We’ll take a call soon,” said chief minister Siddaramaiah. Recently, the state home department mooted the idea to separate the intelligence wing from police so that constables or sub-inspectors can be recruited exclusively for the former.
“It’ll be soon placed before the cabinet with some modifications,” the CM’s secretariat said. Currently, intelligence personnel are drawn from different wings of police on deputation and return to their parent departments after a few months or years. Focused places of posting are on the executive branch. Most officers and staff spend their term in the intelligence wing trying to get back to police as a result of which intelligence gathering suffers.
The home department too transfers officials to the intelligence wing as punishment. Police commissioner Raghavendra Auradkar had proposed strengthening of the intelligence wing. “I reviewed its working when I took charge and found that more professionalism is needed,” he said. If the home department’s proposal is approved, the personnel recruited to the intelligence wing will remain there till retirement. A senior officer said separate recruitment with different eligibility conditions will attract talented candidates. They’ll get special training for intelligence work, he added. “The integration will help state police share intelligence with central agencies in real time and work together on missions,” said home minister, KJ George.
Maoist posters appear in Koyilandi
KOZHIKODE: Police have started investigation into the appearance of posters of CPI (Maoist) at two locations at Koyilandi on Friday. The printed posters are in the name of the Western Ghats Special Zonal Committee of the organisations. The posters exhort the people to join the war to reclaim the rights for forest, water and land. The posters also ask the people to strengthen the peoples’ war to capture people’s power in the Western Ghats area.
Maoists distributed leaflets in last February in the tribal hamlets in Kannur as part of the observance of martyr’s day of Naxalite leader Varghese, which falls on February 18. The armed cadres of the People’s Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA) had visited the adivasi colonies in Kannur and Wayanad districts. It is believed that at least five armed squads of the PLGA are operating in the forests in the Kerala-Karnataka border. Vikram Gowda, a Maoist from Karnataka, is suspected to be the leader of the squads. Maoists had declared the formation of new guerrilla zone in South India. Mallojula Venugopal Rao alias Abhay, the brother of Kishenji, the Maoist leader killed in an encounter two years ago is the secretary of the new guerrilla zone.
EC to hold talks with Centre to assess Maoist threat in poll-bound Chhattisgarh
NEW DELHI: Apprehending a spike in Naxalite violence during Chhattisgarh polls due later this year, the Election Commission (EC) will hold a special round of discussions with the Union home ministry to assess the Maoist threat and outline security arrangements in a dozen affected constituencies. Indications are that polling stations deep inside the Naxalite heartland of Bastar may be relocated or rationalized to minimize the risk of landmine attacks and ambush against Central paramilitary forces and polling parties.
The Chhattisgarh government has asked the EC, which assessed poll preparedness in state during a just-concluded visit to Raipur, to relocate at least 36 hyper-sensitive polling stations from the remote, extremism-prone areas of Bastar division to safer locations like the panchayat/gram sabha office or amalgamate them with polling stations set up in safer, populated areas. The extraordinary measure, the security agencies feel, is necessitated by the high threat perception for the upcoming election.
Buoyed by the success of their May 25 attack on a Congress convoy in Darbha Ghati, which nearly wiped out the party’s state leadership, the Maoists could target political leaders and rallies in the run-up to the election. Sources told TOI that the MHA, during its upcoming meeting with the EC, will seek relocation of polling booths from interior villages to closer to the arterial roads. This, ministry officials feel, will help minimize landmine attacks and ambush as the Central paramilitary forces and polling parties negotiate the jungle terrain.
However, an MHA official added that clearance of its proposal would depend on the outlook of not only the EC, which will be equally concerned about the convenience of voters, and political parties. Both the EC and the MHA are keen on a staggered election in Chhattisgarh, with a separate phase for the Maoist-infested constituencies. Sources said the EC favours polls across non-affected constituencies of Chhattisgarh, along with Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram and Rajasthan, in the first phase, possibly in end-November. Polling in the Naxalite-hit constituencies of Chhattisgarh may be held in a separate phase in early December, to “ensure maximum deployment of Central forces,” said an EC official.
After six-day remand, NIA presents Maoist in court
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Friday produced dreaded Maoist operative Gameli China Mohan Rao before a local court after the completion of his six-day remand. A team of the NIA, led by an SP ranked officer, produced Rao before the Khurda District Judge Court which sent him to judicial custody. He is believed to have told the Central agency about the plans of the outlawed outfit. An area committee member of Koraput-Srikakulam Joint Division of Andhra Odisha Border Special Zonal Committee (AOBSZC) of the CPI (Maoist) organisation, Rao is accused in two key cases.
He was involved in the attack on a BSF convoy in Malkangiri which had led to death of four personnel including a Commandant ranked officer in February last year. It was the first case of NIA taking over a Maoist incident in the State. When Rao was arrested by Rayagada police in May, the cops had seized from his possession a firearm with the number 107/37 which belonged to the slain Commandant of BSF JK Khaswan.
He was also charged in the abduction of Laxmipur MLA Jhina Hikaka on March 24 last year. Besides, Rao is allegedly involved in about 15 incidents of murder and Maoist violence in Odisha as well as neighbouring Andhra Pradesh. He had also served as the body guard of central committee member Rama Krishna, secretary of AOBSZC. The Maoist operative is a native of Visakhapatnam district’s Goudaput village.
Maoist shot dead in encounter in forest
A Maoist was shot dead by the security forces in an encounter in Turekela block of the district on Friday evening. Sources said the encounter took place in Dandel reserve area between Khujen and Badokla under Turekela police station. The police seized two .303 guns from the deceased Maoist. Balangir SP R Prakash said the Maoist was shot dead during the exchange of fire in the deep forest. Nobody from the police was injured in the incident.
A massive combing operation has been launched by the security forces in this area to nab the Maoists. This is the second incident in the area. Two years back, a woman Maoist was killed in Khaprakhol forest area by the SOG during a gun battle. The Red ultras have become active in the area for last few years. They are pasting posters, distributing leaflets and even killing people who are not obeying their diktats. Two days back, some Maoist posters had appeared in Kantabanji and Titilagarh areas of the district.