‘Maoists trying to regroup in Andhra Pradesh’
HYDERABAD: With law-enforcing agencies tightening screws on their arms channels, the Communist Party of India (Maoist) cadre is now heavily dependent on country-made weapon factories of Munger in Bihar to procure small arms. After the surrender of Gudsa Usendi (Gummadavalli Venkata Krishna Prasad), a top Maoist leader, who used to be the face of the rebel outfit in Chhattisgarh as spokesperson of the Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee (DKSZC), the Andhra Pradesh police came to know that Usendi used to have a strong courier network through which he used to communicate with his hierarchy before publishing or communicating.
If intelligence officials are to be believed, this English-speaking Maoist gained knowledge about the left-wing literature during his stay in the forest and not through any professional education. “Usendi never used any communication network. He carried out the Maoist ideology propaganda through its press unit using a wide courier network. With available information, none of the leaders from Andhra Pradesh are on their radar. However, it is a fact that Maoists are making attempts to regroup in Andhra Pradesh,” sources in intelligence told TOI.
Chhattisgarh Cops to Quiz Naxal Leader in Hyderabad
A team of three senior cops, including officials from Subsidiary Intelligence Bureau (SIB) of Chhattisgarh, will be in Hyderabad to question naxal leader and spokesperson of Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee, Gumudavelli Venkatakrishna Prasad aka Gudsa Usendi, who had surrendered before the Andhra Pradesh police. Unlike their Andhra counterpart, the police establishment of the state is treading with caution as they are yet to verify the authenticity of the man who claims to be Prasad Usendi.
“Unless and until we question him and are satisfied that he really is who he claims to be, it would be premature to say anything conclusive”, a senior cop said. As per the naxal tradition, any Dandakaranya committee spokesperson acquires the pseudonym of ‘Gudsa Usendi’ in memory of a young naxal cadre who died in a police ambush in Chhattisgarh in 2000.
Odisha top cop singles out Maoist attack as major challenge
Bhubaneswar: Identifying Maoist activities in the state as the single major challenge for Odisha Police, DGP Prakash Mishra today asked the senior officers to act tough against the offenders. “We will intensify anti-Maoist operation and work till end of the menace,” Mishra told reporters after inaugurating the 57th Senior Police Officers’ conference at Cuttack. Mishra said that efforts are on to nab the Maoist leader and head of the Odisha Maobadi Party (OMP) Sabyasachi Panda. “OMP leader Panda is no more a threat for the police. It is now confined to only six-seven members,” the DGP said adding that efforts are on to nab Panda.
AP leaders dominate Maoists
HYDERABAD: Despite top leaders like Gummadavalli Venkata Krishna Prasad surrendering and top guns like Azad and Kishenji getting eliminated in police encounters, the Communist Party of India (Maoist) leadership is still dominated by Telugus, mostly hailing from Telangana. With the arrest of Prasad alias Gudsa Usendi, the number of AP Maoists in the country has come down to 275. According to police sources, of the 275 Maoists, 198 are currently with the Andhra Orissa Border Special Zonal Committee (AOBSZC) and the remaining with the North Telangana SZC. Currently, the Maoist party has 17 members on its Central Committee of which 11 are from Andhra Pradesh.
The Central Committee members from the state include Muppalla Laxman Rao alias Ganapathi, Nambala Keshav Rao alias Basavaraj, Akkiraju Haragopal alias Ramakrishna, Mallojula Venugopal Rao alias Bhupathi alias Abhay, Katakam Sudarshan alias Anand, Tippiri Tirupati alias Devuji, Malla Raji Reddy, Chittoor Ramchandra Reddy alias Chalapathi, Modem Balakrishna, Kadari Satyanarayana Reddy alias Kosa and Katta Ramchandra Reddy alias Vijay alias Raju. Similarly, the banned organization has six members in its Polit Bureau. Incidentally, four are from AP – Ganapathi, Keshav Rao, Sudarshan and Venugopal Rao — and the other two are Prashant Bose, founder of Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) and Misir Besra alias Sunirmal also from MCC. The rapid depletion of Maoist leadership started in 2007.
During the party’s Unity Congress (9th Congress) held in Bhimgarh forest of Bihar, the Central Committee had 40 members and the Polit Bureau 14. Due to encounter killings, arrests and surrenders, there are only 17 Central Committee members and six Polit Bureau members now. Police expect that some more party workers might surrender in the near future. “Through his family members back home, we have managed to convince Prasad to surrender. The massive compensation they will get by surrendering and protection from the state is luring the Maoist leadership suffering from age-related health problems to think on these lines,” an intelligence official said.
The 45-year-old Prasad is suffering from spondylitis, while his wife Santoshi Markam has cardiac and gyneac problems. While Maoists from AP are still holding important positions like general secretary, chief of central Military Commission, head of Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee and Central Committee spokesperson posts, all of them are around 60 years. In fact, all top leaders from the state are above 55 years and suffering from various ailments. Special Intelligence Bureau (SIB) sleuths claim lack of quality middle-level leadership is one of the reasons for decrease in the number of top leadership.
“Unlike the existing Polit Bureau and central committee members, the state committee, special zonal committee and divisional committee leaders are not ideologically motivated and sophisticated in their ways. In the near future, the Maoist party may not be the same,” another intelligence official said. In 2013, Maoist-related violence was reported only in Khammam and Visakhapatnam districts. Though Prasad claimed that difference of opinion with the top leadership was one of the reasons for his surrender, police said he had not yet given them convincing answers. “We will extensively question him in the next few days,” an SIB official said. After Prasad surrendered, state police are not sure who would be the next Gudsa Usendi, the spokesperson of Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee (DKSZC).
After he decided to surrender, Prasad conveyed his decision to the Polit Bureau and Central Committee members. As the information in Maoist setup is on ‘need-to-know’ basis, Prasad would not have known several things. The party audits what information regarding the organization Prasad can provide to police and launch damage-control measures like change of important bases, dumps and names of key leaders. He was cut off from all activities of the organization during the six-month-long incubation period and he was also trained on how not to provide sensitive information by mock interrogation sessions.
Maoists not a security threat to State
R DUTTA CHOUDHURY
GUWAIIATI, Jan 9 – Though the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has mentioned activities of the Maoist rebels as one of the reasons for extending the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act in Assam, security sources claimed that the Maoists have not been able to pose a security threat to the State as of now. Highly-placed security sources told The Assam Tribune that for quite some time, the Maoist rebels have been trying to make strong bases in Assam, but time and again, their move suffered major setbacks because of successful operations by the police and security forces.
Sources revealed that the Maoists, in the last central committee meeting, also admitted that the move to establish bases in the North East suffered major setbacks because of arrests of key leaders. On the activities of the Maoist rebels, sources said that Sadiya area of Tinsukia district is still the main base of the rebels in Assam, while the Maoists are also trying to make bases in areas like Golaghat and Dhemaji.
There have been reports of the Maoists’ attempts to make bases among the tea tribes in Golaghat district, but it is still not known whether any person from the tea tribes joined the rebels. Moreover, the jungle areas along the Assam-Arunachal border is still considered one of the most vulnerable to Maoist activities in this part of the country. Sources revealed that according to inputs available with the security forces, the Maoists have at least 30 to 40 armed cadres, most of whom were trained in the bases of the rebels in Jharkhand.
But they are lying low for some time after the arrests of several key members. Aditya Bora, who was earlier arrested and jumped bail, is still at large and is considered to be a key man of the Maoists in Assam, while, one Manu, whose real name is not known to the security forces, is spearheading the activities of the Upper Assam Leading Committee of the Maoists. Several attempts were made by the Maoists to form a Lower Assam Leading Committee, but the move is yet to succeed, sources said. It may be mentioned here that in the notification extending the AFSPA in the State by one more year, the MHA said that Maoist presence was noticed in Assam-Arunachal Pradesh border areas, while, movement of the Maoists were also noticed in Golaghat, Dhemaji, Lakhimpur Tinsukia and in Namsai areas.