Peoples War in India Clippings 12/11/2013


Chhattisgarh: Two BSF jawans and a civilian killed in Naxal landmine blast

Raipur: Two BSF jawans and a civilian driver were killed when Naxals blew up their vehicles in Maoist-hit Sukma district of Chhattisgarh on Tuesday. The troopers were returning after security deployment for polling in Sukma region when a landmine blast took place between their two vehicles near Kerlapal camp, Additional Director General Police (Naxal Operations), R K Vij told reporters. While three persons were killed, two others were injured in the blast.

Soon after getting news of the incident, additional forces were rushed to the spot and the injured were being retrieved from there, he said. According to police sources, a convoy of BSF vehicles was returning to their camp after conducting poll duty in the region, when Naxals triggered a blast on a road near Manjhipara and Badeshetti villages in Sukma.

One Dead in Firing as Chhattisgarh Votes

A police officer manning a polling booth was shot dead during elections in the central state of Chhattisgarh Monday by suspected Maoists, the state’s director general of police said. Tens of thousands of security personnel fanned out across the state as its southern districts went to the polls amid a heightened threat of attacks by the region’s Maoist rebels who had called for a boycott of the election.

The officer from the Central Reserve Police Force was killed in firing in Dantewada district, Ram Niwas, the director general of police in the state, told The Wall Street Journal. As helicopters carrying medical aid hovered overhead Monday, a low-intensity blast in Kanker district injured one junior security officer and short bursts of firing broke out in nearby districts, Mr. Niwas added. The administration was forced to cancel voting in two areas as attacks by rebels prevented polling personnel from reaching their designated booths.

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‘Naxals adopting new way of using IEDs to sabotage C’garh polls’

The findings of the teams from the Institute of IED Management of the CRPF at Talegaon near Pune show that the Maoist are using a type of misleading IED (Improvised Explosive Device) to sabotage elections in Chhattisgarh. The findings show that the Maoists are using IEDs instead of direct confrontations. The first phase of Chhattisgarh elections that got over on Monday covered six districts worst effected by the Left Wing Extremism.

Two teams from the Institute IED Management (IIM) were in Chhattisgarh before the elections and have studied the IEDs and explosives that were recovered during several raids. Commandant Mohammed Jamal Khan, principal of the IIM told Newsline, “A different kind of IED, which is kind of a booby-trap, is being used by the Maoists. They keep a wire protruding out of the ground and an impression is created that the IED is somewhere nearby connected to this wire. But the real IED is somewhere in the way. Such IEDs have been recovered from the Jagargunda Chintalnar road, which had the major Maoist attack in the recent past in May.” Commandant Khan said, “Maoist are using IEDs instead of the direct confrontation. They have lost a lot leaders and there hasn’t been enough recruitment. So this is the method they are opting for now. Hundreds of kilograms of explosive materials recovered from this belt prove this.”

The IIM teams have helped other security forced like BSF, ITBP, the Chhattisgarh state police who are deployed in the state during the elections. “We have also given directive to these forces about another strategy. There is a possibility of an attack in which security forces are intercepted by light firing, which will prompt them to take hiding in nearby bushes. There is possibility that these places are rigged,” said an officer with the institute.

How security forces foiled plot by Naxalites

NEW DELHI: The Maoists had prepared the ground to cause large-scale disruptions during polling in Chhattisgarh, but meticulous planning by security forces ensured the first phase passed off without any major incident. To foil Maoist designs, the security forces moved only on foot, studiously avoiding vehicles, built two-tier security rings around polling booths ensuring the Maoists were beaten back on the periphery itself and freshly-inducted troops were trained in visual detection of IEDs. As was evident from the firing on polling booths that led to the death of a CRPF jawan and the recovery of over a dozen IEDs on Monday, Naxals were determined to scuttle the polls.

On Monday the CRPF alone fought as many as 14 Maoist attacks and over three days recovered 78 IEDs from the poll zone. If despite all this the Maoists failed to score a spectacular hit, it was because of the deployment of 1 lakh personnel, over 56,000 of whom were fresh inductions by CRPF. According to CRPF, appointed the nodal agency for poll security, the force mobilized its 350-odd trainers and bomb experts from across the country to Chhattisgarh to train troops.

In a 15-day exercise before polls, the troops were put through a jungle familiarization exercise, taken on mock patrol drills and taught how to sniff out IEDs even without equipment. “For such a large deployment equipment is always going to fall short. So we taught our men how to spot IEDs visually and dismantle them,” said a senior CRPF officer. With inputs of IEDs planted on many roads in Bastar and Rajnandgaon, the force forbade its troops from using vehicles and all movements and deployments were carried out on foot. “We deployed a DIG in each district to oversee security. Just moving 564 companies was a huge operation and used 83 companies for opening roads,” CRPF DG Dilip Trivedi said. Polling booths were given two security rings — the first cordon to secure booths and the second at a distance so that any attack is neutralized without harming civilians. “Most firings today happened on the outer cordon,” a senior officer explained. A bigger challenge awaits the force with the likelihood of troops being targeted when they are pulled back from poll duties. “EVMs too will move on Tuesday and could be targeted,” said the officer.

Two security personnel injured in naxal attack on poll parties

A deputy commandant of CRPF and a BSF jawan were injured in separate naxal attacks on polling parties in Maoist-affected Bastar region, police said. The incidents took place in Sukma and Kanker districts of Bastar division when the polling parties were returning to the district headquarters after elections in the respective regions early this morning, a senior police official said. The Deputy Commandant of CRPF 150 battalion was shot in his legs when naxals opened indiscriminate firing on the polling party accompanied with security forces in Temelwada forest under Chintagufa police station limits of south Bastar, the official added.

Soon after, additional forces were rushed to the spot and a helicopter has also been sent to airlift the injured officer, he said. In a separate incident, a BSF jawan was injured in a landmine blast triggered by naxals near Gondahur village under Pakhanjore police station limits of Kanker district, he said. The paramilitary forces were opening the road for the movement of buses in Gondahur village bringing back polling parties when naxals triggered a high intensity blast leaving a BSF jawan injured, he said. However, the polling parties are safe.



SC grants interim bail to Soni Sori, Lingaram Kodopi

The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted interim bail to Soni Sori, the tribal school teacher of Dantewada and her relative journalist, Lingaram Kodopi. In a couple days Ms Sori and Mr Kodopi are expected to be released from jail. Meanwhile Ms Sori and Mr Kodopi will be transferred to Delhi. Granting the interim bail Justice S S Nirjar said since the Chhattisgarh police has not able to furnish proper reply on time, an interim bail has been granted. The next hearing of the case is on December 3. The bail application was filed couple of months ago by Ms Sori’s lawyer Colin Gonsalves. Lawyer Prashant Bhusan filed the application on behalf of Lingaram Kodopi. Ms Sori and Mr Kodipi.

While Ms. Sori and Mr. Kodopi either got bail or acquittal in most of the cases, both were denied bail by the Chattisgarh courts. Rejecting the bail petition in Chattisgarh High Court, a couple of months back, Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra said that “on basis of the seriousness of the evidence” the petition had been rejected. Finally, the bail application was filed in the Supreme Court earlier this month. Ms. Sori has been acquitted in six of the eight cases in the last one and half years, while Mr. Kodopi has been acquitted in the only other case of planning an attack on local Congress leader Avdesh Gautam.

In the present case, regarding Essar Steel, where both Ms Sori and Mr Kodopi have been accused of arranging “protection money” on behalf of the company to Maoists, was the only case in which the accused have not yet been granted bail. The main accused, D.V.C.S Verma, general manager at an Essar steel plant, and B.K. Lala, an Essar contractor, were arrested for allegedly disbursing the money. Both Mr. Verma and Mr. Lala got bail within few months of their arrest. But Ms Sori and Mr Kodopi have had to wait nearly two and half years.

Maoists kill rebel leader, 2 others in Gaya

Three people, including the local head of CPI (Maoist) rebel group Sashastra People’s Morcha (SPM), were killed and two injured by Naxals at Amkola village in Mohanpur block of Gaya district Sunday. Police said SPM local head Sanjay Yadav, who was reportedly also a police informer, had gone to Amkola with Munishwar and Surendra Yadav to watch a dance programme. Over two dozen Maoists laid seige to the cultural programme venue. They first fired in the air to disperse the crowd and then shot Sanjay (31), Surendra (32) and Munishwar (36). Manoj Yadav, who formed the SPM in 2009, was also attacked in 2010. Gaya SP Nishant Kumar Tiwari said: “Sanjay Yadav and the ultras had an old enmity. He was targeted also for assisting the police in carrying out anti-Naxal operations.”–2-others-in-Gaya/1193813/

Naxals trigger blasts on eve of Chhattisgarh assembly polls, 2 jawans hurt

Two Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) jawans were injured in an IED blast triggered by Naxals in the Maoist-hit Rajnandgaon district of Chhattisgarh on the eve of the first phase of Assembly elections, police said. “The incident occurred this afternoon near Baldongri village under Aundhi police station, located around 125 km from Rajnandgaon district headquarters, when a polling party was heading towards its destination,” Rajnandgaon SP Sanjeev Shukla said.

The polling party was on its way to Baldongri booth when Naxals set off a low-intensity IED blast near a rivulet, leaving two ITBP personnel injured, he said. “The jawans were provided primary treatment at a local health centre and are being brought to the Rajnangdaon headquarters,” he said, adding the polling staff reached their destination safely. 18 constituencies of Naxal-affected Bastar and Rajnandgaon districts are going to polls on Monday. The troopers, two of whom sustained splinter injuries, took immediate positions and because of their movement in ‘Y’ pattern, there was no casualty. “Due to their alertness the troops were able to combat the blast which was carried out by an IED weighing about 15 kg,” a senior official said. Both the troopers are out of danger and they have been shifted to a nearby healthcare centre. The polling booth has been taken over by security personnel.

Anti-Naxal combing operations enters day 2

The combing operation launched by the Anti-Naxal Force (ANF) and police in the deep forests of Kuthlur and surrounding regions after Naxals torched a vehicle of social worker Ramachandra Bhat entered the second day on Sunday. IGP (Western Range) Pratap Reddy said the operation will continue until success is achieved. SP Shantanu Sinha told Express that the police are assisting the ANF in the combing operation. Asked whether the operation has been launched in other districts too, Sinha refused to give a specific answer. Bhat has been involved in rehabilitating tribals, Malekudiyas and other forest dwellers volunteering to relocate from the Kudremukh National Park. Police sources said some families which are unwilling to relocate from the forest assumed that Bhat is working against tribals. This must be the reason for the Naxal attack.

Naxals regroup, induct recruits in Karnataka

Mangalore: Contrary to the government’s claim that the number of Maoists in the Malnad forest region has decreased, the red bri­gade has in fact been trying to regroup and is now inducting new people into its ranks. Naxal top leader and one of the Dantewada attackers, B.G. Krishna­murthy, who was absconding from Karna­taka for the past two years was recently spotted in Sringeri forest, locals here claim. Krishnamurthy, who hails from Bukkadibail village in Sringeri Taluk, leads the naxals in the area and adjoining areas in Chikmagalur district. The naxal leader was found missing for a long period, and rumours about his possible shift to Chhatisgarh after a police crackdown circulated.

However, forest dwellers now claim that Krishnamurthy “After a gap of two years, people have seen Kris­hnamurthy. He has returned and is very active with his team in Sringeri forests,” sources told Deccan Chronicle. Sources also claim that the maoists have not only regrouped, but have been recruiting new people into their ranks. “Many new faces are said to have joined the Naxal group. It is not yet clear if they are new recruits from the region or if they have come from other states.

The Maoists have been clandestine about their movements these past few days. “Earlier, they would move about freely and visit any house in the forest, but now they have restricted their movement and visit only their supporters, so that officials and non-sympathisers of the Maoist movement could be easily hoodwinked,” sources said. It may be recalled that on Saturday, about 15 Maoists set a motorbike and a car belonging to Ramachandra Bhat ablaze. Mr Bhat, an NGO employee’s possessions were attacked in the wee hours of the morning.

Beltangady: Naxals target gram panchayat member, set fire to property

Beltangady, Nov 9: Once again, Naxals have made their presence felt in the coastal districts, though after a long gap. A group of 10 to 20 armed Naxals reportedly visited Kutlur gram panchayat member Ramachandra Bhat’s house in Beltangady, Naravi in the early hours of Saturday November 9 and left a trail of damage.

Landmine blast injures five BSF personnel in poll-bound Chhattisgarh

The troopers were returning after security deployment for polling in Sukma region when a landmine blast took place between their two vehicles near Kerlapal camp, Additional Director General Police (Naxal Operations), RK Vij said. “Five BSP personnel, including a doctor, were injured in the incident,” Vij said. Soon after getting news of the incident, additional forces were rushed to the spot and the injured were being retrieved from there, he said. Further details were awaited. According to police sources, a convoy of BSF vehicles was returning to their camp after conducting poll duty in the region, when Naxals triggered a blast on a road near Manjhipara and Badeshetti villages in Sukma. (Agencies)

Hardcore Maoist arrested by joint security forces in Munger

A hardcore Maoist has been arrested from a village in Munger district of Bihar, police said. Acting on a tip-off, a joint team of STF (Special Task Force) and CRPF raided Sonebarsa village and arrested a hardcore ultra Bhim Turi from a house, Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) Sanjay Kumar Singh, said. Turi was involved in several offences committed by the Maoists, the ASP said.

New hostage policy bars releasing hardcore Maoists

The Union home ministry has asked the states not to release hardcore Maoists facing murder charges if faced with a hostage situation. Home minister Sushilkumar Shinde on Monday announced that the Centre had finally formulated the standard operating procedure to be followed while dealing with hostage situations in areas affected by left-wing extremism. However, Shinde did not elaborate on the new policy. The home ministry had begun working on the policy after the 2011 abduction of Vineel Krishna, the then-collector of Odisha’s Malkangiri district.

The final policy gives the states some leeway to negotiate with Maoists but bars the release of hardcore armed guerrillas who face murder charges or are serving prison terms for murder. Last year, finance minister P Chidambaram, who was then home minister, had rejected a policy of no-negotiation with Maoist abductors on grounds that it was not practical. Instead, the Centre has asked states battling against Maoist insurgency to fast-track the setting up of special forces, which could be immediately deployed for operations in such cases.

A standing offer to request deployment of the Black Cat commandos of the National Security Guard has also been made in case specific intelligence inputs were available to conduct operations. There has been a rise in the incidents of Maoists abducting government functionaries in order to secure the release of their cadres and sympathisers.

Maoists eyeing trade unions for urban push

Far from their bastions in the jungled tracts of central India, activists and sympathisers of the Communist Party of India (Maoists) have been making repeated attempts to penetrate into workers’ associations and trade unions in the national capital. “Associations with close ties to the CPI (Maoist) have been very active in the last few months. We have come to know of several such meetings where representatives of such associations have met trade union activists, but without substantial success till now. But Delhi is a focus area for Maoists,” a top government source told HT on condition of anonymity.

These efforts are also in keeping with the key resolutions adopted by the fourth central committee meet held in the dense forests along the Chhattisgarh-Odisha border sometime in February-March 2013. In a document of the adopted resolutions, suspected by security agencies to have been penned by CPI (Maoist) general secretary Muppalla Laxman Rao alias Ganapathy himself, it is written:

“We should mobilise the non-peasant vast masses in all our strategic movement areas. We should build the urban movement and rally the working class and the vast urban masses into the revolutionary movement.” While security and intelligence agencies had indicated the ‘presence’ of Maoist elements across many urban areas including New Delhi and in Bihar and Jharkhand, their ‘influence’ was always under doubt. “The latest strategy is to ramp up the ‘influence’ in the urban network. This is a ‘tactical’ effort to get forces of urban discontent together on the basis of a common workable understanding,” said the source. Traditionally, tribal communities across central India have been the usual mainstay of the Maoists for support, with the inaccessibility and remoteness of such areas facilitating construction of bases for weapons training and ideological indoctrination.

Maoists beat up sarpanch’s husband

G MADUGULA (VISAKHAPATNAM): The husband of Kalimkota sarpanch in G Madugula mandal of Visakha Agency was beaten up allegedly by CPI on Wednesday for not heeding their diktats. However, the incident came to light only late on Thursday night. Around 30 Reds of Korukonda Area Committee caught hold of Killamkota sarpanch Lakshmi’s husband, Munipalle Pandanna, who is a former sarpanch of the same panchayat, hauled him to a praja court at Killamkota and severely beat him up for not responding to their calls to meet them, sources said.

They also targeted Pandanna because he allowed his wife to contest the panchayat elections held three months ago despite the boycott call given by them in their stronghold areas at Killamkota, Boyitili, Nurmathi and Beeram. The Naxals had even taken away the nomination papers at Nurmathi and Boyitili from the polling staff, striking terror in people of the area during polling. The Maoists had warned Pandanna to boycott the elections much before the panchayat polls or face dire consequences, but instead of heeding their diktat, he put up his wife’s nomination for the elections.

After his wife’s victory in the polls, Pandanna shifted his residence from Surtapalli, 3 km away from Killamkota, to the mandal headquarters G Madugula to avoid Maoist attacks. But he was caught by Maoists on Wednesday when he went to his native village Surtapalli as a Maoist squad was very close to his village. The Maoist squad that beat up Pandanna also destroyed hooch at Lingeti junction on the G Madugula and Pedabayalu border areas and warned the liquor businessmen of stringent action if they were found selling hooch again.

Anti-Red ops intensified in Hazaribag

HAZARIBAG: Anti-Maoist operation in the forests between Gomia and Bishnugarh was intensified on Sunday following attack on construction workers and destruction of property worth Rs 1 crore. The operation, which started on November 8, was stepped up at Narki forest after Chhath, said Satish Kumar Jha,DSP (rural), Hazaribag on Sunday.

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