High alert in Balaghat as Maoists from Chhattisgarh hole up in forests
BHOPAL: Central and state security forces have been put on high alert after massive Naxalite movement was detected in the state’s sole Maoist-hit district, Balaghat. Intelligence inputs suggest that hundreds of guerrillas have infiltrated into Balaghat from neighbouring Chhattisgarh – a rebel hotbed. Armed cadres led by the former local guerrilla squad (LGS) commander Dilip were spotted in Bargud forests, 90 km from the district headquarters.
The area falls under the Daverveli police station. Dilip, an expert in explosives, is wanted by the state police in more than 30 cases, including murder of Likhiram Kawre, then transport minister of undivided Madhya Pradesh. The minister was hacked to death in 1999 at his native village in Sonepuri.
Raipur stems up as nodal point of Naxal supplies in Chhattisgarh
Raipur: With a strong urban network of Maoists resurfacing in the cities of Chhattisgarh, capital Raipur has emerged as a key centre for supply of logistics like clothes, arms and ammunition. More than the attacks in forests, what has left the police baffled are a couple of recent incidents where arms and ammunition were found in Raipur and its adjoining cities. The arrest of three Maoist couriers, who were allegedly handling the urban operations of Naxals, along with ammunition two days back in the district has once again set the alarm bell ringing for the Raipur Police.
“Close vigil is being kept to trace every suspected movement in and around Raipur. We have certain inputs of assistance being provided to the rebels from town areas and we are taking appropriate action on that,” Raipur Superintendent of Police OP Pal told a news agency. The arrest is likely to unfold more information about the Maoist conduit operating in city area as their questioning has led to nabbing of two other Naxals from Bhanupratappur in Kanker who were working for urban module, he said. The fresh arrest also revealed that Maoist arms couriers are not only using four-wheelers but also motorcycles to carry small consignments of ammunition and other commodities for the Reds in their stronghold Bastar.
“The consignment was being supplied on a motorcycle and no doubt they have done it earlier several times,” the SP said. For the first time a major Naxal urban network was busted in 2008 with the arrest of eight persons, including a journalist Prafulla Jha, and a huge cache of arms and ammunition, electronic gadgets and uniforms were seized from Danganiya of Raipur and Bilaspur, police sources said. Since 2012 there has been a rise in cases of seizure of arms and ammunition from the city. In June 2012, police arrested two Naxal associates – Sheikh Mujeeb and Anjali Chouhan – from separate places in the capital and seized from them 270 rounds of AK-47 and self loading rifle, sources said. Within two days of their arrest, Anjali’s husband ? Sheikh Anwar – and a Naxal Bablu were arrested with 160 rounds SLR rifle, which they had allegedly procured?from Andhra Pradesh-based Naxal couriers. ‘
Further interrogation of the four revealed that the consignment was to be delivered in the forests of Rajnandgaon. Prior to this incident, in March 2012, a joint team of three states – Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal had raided godown of a transport company in Raipur and seized 79 boxes of raw material for making rocket launchers and mortars meant for Maoists, the sources said. Surprisingly, the consignment was lying in the godown of a transport company in the city for several months and was allegedly to be delivered in Bastar, but police swung into action after getting information from other states. More recently, in August last year, police arrested two persons who were transporting explosives and material used to make bomb in their SUV in Raipur’s Shankar Nagar area. As many as 32 pieces of detonators, oxygen cylinder, cooking gas cylinder, copper wires, 10 dynamites rod, small nut bolts, battery, torches, DVD, CD along with some documents meant for Naxals were seized from their vehicle, sources said.
Although police have achieved success in busting the urban chains of Maoists, they are yet to ascertain the origin of the recovered arms, ammunition and explosives. “Though we have got certain clues about the supply of arms and ammunition from West Bengal and Mumbai, we have not been able to trace their exact origin,” a senior intelligence official said, on condition of anonymity. “There is much possibility of couriers being changed four to five times for supplying a single consignment in order to conceal the exact source of weapons and bullets and other commodities,” he said. Their (Naxals) urban network is the bedrock on which their success in forests and rural areas has been built. This network has been supplying all logistics, right from clothes to arms and ammunition, he pointed out. PTI
Cops arrest 2 naxal couriers
Raipur, Jan 17 (PTI) Continuing its crackdown on the “urban network” of Maoists, Chhattisgarh police has arrested two naxal couriers, including a businessman allegedly involved in procuring funds for the ultras here today, police said. In their bid to dismantle the network, police has put many industrialists and some people under the scanner and more arrests are likely in coming days.
Arms recovered after encounter with naxals in Chhattisgarh
Raipur: A cache of arms and ammunition was recovered after a prolonged gunbattle between security personnel and Maoists in naxal-affected Kondagaon district of Chhattisgarh, police said today. The exchange of fire took place in Chhote Usri’s Patelpara forest under Mardapal police station limits on Thursday evening, said Kondagaon additional superintendent of police Surjit Atri. Acting on a tip-off, the joint party of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and district force was mobilised for an area domination operation in Mardapal forests located around 300 kms away from Raipur on Thursday morning.
On sensing security forces near Kakda Beda forest of Patelpara area, about 25 armed naxals led by self-styled naxal commander of Mardapal LOS (local operation squad) Kosa, opened indiscriminate firing on them. After security forces launched retaliatory attack, naxals fled into the jungles, he said. Following the encounter, a search operation was launched in the region during which five muzzle loading guns, explosives and commodities of daily use of naxals were seized, he said. Though no casualty was reported during the encounter, he said some of the rebels could have suffered injuries. Soon after the incident, additional forces were rushed to the spot, he added. PTI
Naxalism declining in the state: report
[….]However, Nagpur University Professor Shoma Sen, an activist since the 80s in the field of human rights, disagreed with these conclusions. “A statistical decrease in violence does not mean the Naxal movement in the state is on the decline. Naxalites too claim they are running schemes among tribals related to education, health and superstition — Naxals are simply retaliating violently for self protection, as they are under attack.” Sen added that the government needs to think of political solutions instead of military ones that suppress the people, and genuinely understand tribals before providing panaceas. When questioned about programmes like Janjagran Melawa and Maharashtra Darshan, Sen said, “These are not development programmes, they are government propaganda. If they really want to help, money should be directed towards tribals in these and other rural areas, instead of spending from the state exchequer to fund airport terminals.”
Two nabbed after police, Maoist encounter
BERHAMPUR: Security personnel on Thursday arrested two persons from Kandhamal’s Kotagarh forest following an encounter with Maoists. Maoist literature, empty self-loading rifle cartridges, torches, towels, kit bags and some medicines were seized from them. Police is yet to share details about the seized items as the combing operation parties had not returned from the forest, where the gun-battle between them and the extremists took place, said SP (Kandhamal) K V Singh.
The arrested were identified as Manoj Kumar Sabat, 31, and Dhaneswara Badaseth, 38, police said. “We are verifying their links with Maoists. Most probably they were involved in supplying essential stuff to the radicals,” said a police officer. Police said around a dozen rebels were present during the encounter, which started around 9 am and lasted for nearly 20 minutes. “No casualty has been reported from either side.
We have no information of any Maoist sustaining injuries during the fire exchange,” Singh said. Securitymen belonging to the district volunteer forces of Kandhamal and Rayagada districts and special operations group conducted the combing operation. While most of the ultras fled, security personnel detected three persons. They could nab two of them, while the third, believed to be a hardcore Maoist, ran away, police said.
Prisoners’ stir against non-release of inmates
Hazaribag: More than 200 prisoners, including women, of the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Central Jail at Hazaribag went on a daylong hunger strike on Thursday. They were demanding that 31 convicts who have completed their jail terms about two to four years ago should be released soon. Earlier, too, a group of prisoners led by Maoist leaders Narayan Sanyal, Ravi Sharma, Narayan Reddy along with those whose terms ranging from 10 to 20 years have been completed but are yet to be freed had planned to intensify their agitation inside the jail if their demands were not met by January 26. This time the prisoners are sitting on a dharna and shouting slogans inside the jail campus. All prisoners of the jail, nearly 1300, will go on an indefinite hunger strike from January 30 if the ones who completed their term are not freed by January 26.