Peoples War in India Clippings 20/1/2014

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Anti-Naxal ops: 6,000 more men to be deployed in Chhattisgarh

New Delhi: The government has decided to deploy close to 6,000 additional central security forces personnel for conducting specialised tasks in the anti-Naxal operations grid in Chhattisgarh. Out of the six new battalions which will be drawn from the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB), two have already been deployed in the Sukma and Dantewada districts of south Bastar in the state. One battalion comprises about a 1,000 personnel.

According to a new blue-print prepared by the Home Ministry, these personnel will be essentially deployed and used to perform road opening and sanitising duties in these areas. However, they will also undertake operations if there is a requirement. The new battalions will aid the operations conducted by other central forces like CRPF, ITBP, BSF and state police forces which have a combined strength of over 32,000 in Chhattisgarh alone. SSB, which is the designated border guarding force along India’s frontiers with Nepal and Bhutan, was withdrawn from these operations in Chhattisgarh in 2011. It was then guarding camps of the Salwa Judum workers.

“It is essential to sanitise routes taken by security forces and those tracks which are used for other operational and general purposes. While other forces are now dominating their respective areas, the SSB men will do road opening duties in Chhattisgarh,” sources in the security establishment said. The new SSB battalions have been trained by CRPF and also at the jungle warfare school in Kanker. The squads will be using gadgets to detect improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and landmines which have been a cause of numerous deaths and injuries to security force personnel conducting anti-Maoist operations. PTI

Naxals fire at IAF chopper carrying top CRPF officials

New Delhi: Top CRPF officials had a narrow escape when suspected Naxals fired at an IAF chopper carrying them while it was landing at Chintagufa in Sukma district in Bastar region of Chhattisgarh, official sources said on Monday. Sources in the Union Home Ministry said the incident took place on Saturday when the helicopter with CRPF Inspector General H S Sidhu on board was landing. Sidhu had gone to oversee an ongoing operation against Naxals in the region.

The suspected Maoists fired at the chopper from a nearby hillock, the sources said, adding that two bullets hit the rotor. The fire was returned immediately and there was no causality. The sources said all standard operating procedures had been followed before landing of the helicopter in the area. They said there was no damage to the aircraft which took off after some time carrying CRPF personnel who were to be deployed deep inside Bastar jungle for anti-Maoist operations.

The IAF helicopter has been leased to para-military forces for anti-Naxal operation. Naxals had abducted Sukma Collector Alex Paul Menon from the region after killing two of his bodyguards two years ago. The place is located 300 km from state capital Raipur. There have been at least 10 instances of Naxals making attempts to fire at helicopters in Sukma, Dantewada and Jagdalpur districts of Chhattisgarh.

Maoists kill couple in Bihar

Jamui (Bihar), Jan 20 (PTI) Armed Maoists killed a man and his wife in Rangkala village in Bihar’s Naxal-hit Jamui district, police said today. Over 20 armed Maoists, wearing police uniform, raided the house of Gyani Yadav in Rangkala village last night and killed his wife Siya Devi by pumping bullets into her chest, officer in-charge of Jhajha police station Sumit Kumar said.

Special Judicial officer appointed for trying top Maoist

A Special Judicial Officer was on Sunday appointed on the direction of Governor for speedy trial in cases against top jailed Maoist Ajay Kanu for whose release the ultras had enacted jail break in Jehanabad eight years ago. Mohammad Salim was appointed as Special Judicial Officer for trial of all cases against Kanu in the Beur jail in Patna where he is lodged at present, district court sources said. The Governor’s order for appointment of the special judicial came in the wake of a direction of the Patna High Court, the sources said.

So far, the top Maoist is being tried in six cases in Patna, Jehanabad and Gaya. For releasing Kanu from jail, the Maoists had triggered jailbreak in Jehanabad in 2005 in which more than 300 prisoners had escaped by scaling the wall of the prison. More than 200 of them had returned to jail while many others were rearrested by the police.

Centre plans enhanced sops for surrendering Maoists

…The home ministry’s data on Maoists laying arms is not very encouraging. Last year, 283 rebels surrendered before the authorities, a number significantly lower than previous years. Sources said the dipping numbers have been a cause of worry for the government. In 2012, 445 Maoists surrendered and in 2011 the number was 394. Moreover, the number of rebels arrested by forces has also come down. In 2013, 1,397 rebels were arrested, a dip from 2012 when the figure was 1,901. In 2011, 2,030 Maoists were apprehended.

Police, Maoists exchange fire near Bijepaar armed outpost

Maoists today opened fire on a police patrol party in the hilly areas near Bijepaar armed outpost (AOP) but they fled after security forces retaliated, a senior police official said. However, nobody was injured in the exchange of fire. There outlawed Maoist attacked a police C-60 patrol platoon in the hilly areas near Bijepaar armed outpost (AOP), which falls under the jurisdiction of the Salekasa police station.

The incident occured around 4.30 PM when a police C-60 platoon was on routine patrolling sighted Maoists at Shiv Mandir hills near the AOP. The Maoists opened fire at the police heading towards them and the police retaliated, District Superintendent of Police Dilip Zalke said. Later, the insurgents managed to escape taking advantage of the hilly terrain and surrounding forests. Meanwhile, the police has intensified patrolling and search operations.

2106 insurgents killed between 1980 and 2010 : MHA

Source: The Sangai Express Imphal, January 19 2014 : Altogether 2106 insurgents were killed by security forces between 1980 and 2010 whereas insurgents shot dead 1218 security personnel, according to data and statistics available with the Ministry of Home Affairs. It further stated that the non-State actors killed 2405 civilians. According to a memorandum submitted by the Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights in Manipur to two UN Special Rapporteurs, 1528 civilians were shot dead by State and Central security forces in fake encounters between 1979 and 2012 .

Between 1974 and 2013, 24 women were raped and 162 women were shot dead by security forces between 1980 and 2012 alleged the Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights in the memorandum submitted to the UN Rapporteurs. State and Central security forces have conducted many large scale military operations in the State. Many civilians were also massacred en masse by both State and Central forces.

Some of the standout massacres were the killing of 14 persons on June 18, 2001, killing of 12 persons in Tabunglong, Tamenglong in 2000, killing of 10 persons at Malom in 2000, killing of 10 persons in Tonsen Lamkhai, killing of five persons in Chura-chandpur in 1999, killing of 9 persons in Nunglei-band, killed between 1980 killing of nine persons at RMC (now RIMS) in 1996, killing of four persons at Ningkao, Tamenglong in 1994, killing of four persons at Makui, Tamenglong in 1994, killing of five persons at Tera in 1993, killing of 15 persons at Oinam, Senapati in 1987 and killing of 13 persons at Heirangoithong in 1984 .

Some of the major military operations were Operation Blue Bird (1987), Operation Sunny Vale (1993), Operation Loktak (2005), Operation Tornado (2005), Operation Dragnet (2006), Operation Somtal-I (2006), Operation Somtal-II (2008) and Operation Summer Storm (2009) . In the name of tackling insurgency, Armed Forces Special Powers Act 1958 was imposed all over the State since 1980.Under this infamous Act, even non commissioned officer can shoot or detain any person on mere suspicion. Many people who survived indiscriminate firing by security forces were crippled and they have been living in a state of trauma.

Whereas data available with the Ministry of Home Affairs give the numbers of security forces killed by insurgents, insurgents killed by security forces and civilians killed by insurgents, the Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights in Manipur and the UN has already published a report indicating the number of people killed by security forces and rapes committed by security forces. Talking with The Sangai Express, Advocate Basanta Wareppa of Human Rights Law Network said that the Government of India should be clear whether there is a non-international armed conflict in India or not.

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