Rebels kill Malkangiri village headman
KORAPUT: Maoists killed a village headman in Malkangiri district on Saturday night, suspecting him to be a police informer. Locals recovered the body of Penta Madkami alias Kalbu (50) of Mangipalli village from a forest near the village on early Sunday. The Maoists fired bullets from a close range, killing Madkami on the spot. The rebels reached Madkami’s home and took him away on Saturday night and subsequently gunned him down, suspecting him of keeping in touch with the police.
INDIA: MAOISTS’ NEW FRONTS, OLD IDEAS – ANALYSIS
The Central Committee of the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist), in its “Message to the Milan International Conference in Solidarity with the People’s War in India” [September 10, 2014] reconfirmed its earlier assessment, that the ‘countrywide movement is facing a very difficult condition’. The Party, however, vowed to fight back, declaring, “We are striving hard for revival of the movement in some of the areas from where we had to retreat. In areas where we have weakened the party is trying to face the situation with Bolshevik spirit.” Crucially, the Message disclosed, “Facing heavy odds and losses, we are opening up a new war front in the Sahyadri (Western Ghats) border region of Karnataka-Kerala-Tamil Nadu”.
Past efforts to extend the Maoist movement into the Southern States have, however, met with little success, though this has never deterred the CPI-Maoist from trying. The Maoists’ latest efforts have also not gone unnoticed. The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (UMHA) thus observed, in a six-page letter sent to 13 States in 2013, “The party (CPI-Maoist) is trying to develop the tri-junction of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu as a suitable operational base.” To consolidate their position in Kerala, CPI-Maoist and the Communist Party of India-Marxist Leninist – Naxalbari (CPI-ML-Naxalbari), merged on May 1, 2014, under the CPI-Maoist banner.
Though they have not perpetrated any major acts of violence in the State, they have been visible with an increasing frequency and there is significant evidence of their mobilisation. The shadows of violence and intimidation are also increasingly visible. On September 22, 2014, regional television channels in Kerala showed video clips, reportedly of CPI-Maoist leader Roopesh, threatening to launch an armed struggle in the State. Interestingly, in the message to the Milan International Conference, the CPI-Maoist claims:
An exceptional contribution of the party is that of arousing the women who are half the sky and developing their capacities in political, organisational, military, cultural and other spheres so that they can lay claim to their share in struggle. Today around 40 percent of the fighting force of the PLGA [People’s Liberation Guerrilla Army (PGA)] consists of women, though the percentage varies in various guerrilla zones. Women are commanders at the platoon level and members of company level party committees.
Meanwhile, media reports suggest that, while women constituted around 25 per cent of Maoist cadres in 2008, this proportion increased to 40 per cent by 2010 and may have risen to 60 per cent by the beginning of 2013, with Chhattisgarh leading among the Maoist-hit States where recruitment of women cadre is high. According to an Intelligence Bureau (IB) source, about 60 per cent women cadres were recruited at lower ranks in Maoist camps in the first few months of 2013, while women comprised 50 per cent of the ‘area and divisional committees’ and 25 per cent in ‘zonal committees’. In Bastar, around 27 ‘divisional committees’ were operating under the ‘Dandkaranya Special Zonal Committee’, of which at least 20 were being led by women.
Chhattisgarh cops rubbish reports on cornering top Maoist Ganapathy
RAIPUR: Chhattisgarh police has described reports that its personnel and para-military forces have encircled top Maoist leader and outlawed CPI (Maoist) general secretary Ganapathy alias Muppala Lakshman Rao in the Abujmarh forests in tribal Bastar region as “highly speculative”. “I don’t have any clue about it. Is it practically possible to encircle Abujmarh- spread over an area of more than about 4,000 square kilometres and has a dense forest cover, rocky terrain, rivers and rivulets and inaccessible forest?” a top police official reasoned.
He said security forces, including from the para-military, have been regularly conducting search and combing operations at different places on the basis of intelligence inputs suggesting presence of Maoist cadres. “Because of mounting pressure from the forces, nearly 200 lower-rung cadres of outlawed CPI (Maoist) had surrendered during the last couple of months,” he pointed out.
Maoists Kill Villager for Allegedly Being ‘Salwa Judum’ Leader in Sukma
RAIPUR: A group of Maoists allegedly killed a 38-year-old villager, after branding him as a leader of the erstwhile state-sponsored anti-Maoist movement ‘Salwa Judum’, in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Sukma district today. The body of Kawasi Hadma, who was allegedly abducted by Maoists last month, was found near his native place in Milliampalli village under Jagargunda police station limits, Sukma Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) Santosh Singh said.
The victim’s body bore multiple injuries and his throat was slit with a sharp-edged weapon, Singh said. According to villagers, Maoists stormed into the victim’s house on September 16 in Milliampalli and allegedly kidnapped him. After 20 days of abduction, Hadma’s body was found lying in a pool of blood in the restive forest patch near his village today morning, the ASP said.
Suspected Maoists put up flex boards in Attappady
The police have stepped up vigil in Attappady region following the appearance of flex boards allegedly installed by the banned Maoist outfit to exhort the working class to prepare for an ‘armed battle’ against ‘ruling elites.’ While most of the flex boards were seen in Kallamala region of western Attappady on Friday morning, a few were installed at Poonchola and Pambbanthode villages close to Mannarkkad. The boards claimed their ownership to a special regional committee of the CPI(Maoist) Western Ghats unit. The boards said the organisation was observing the 10th anniversary of its armed resistance and sought cooperation of the general public in strengthening the party base in the three southern States. It wanted strong public vigilance against concerted efforts of the ruling class to plunder water, land, forests, and natural resources.
A few notices and stickers were found pasted on the walls in the locality. At Kallamala, a few handouts on armed revolution were found in the bazaar as if left behind by Maoist cadres to attract the local community. Some of the banners erected by the CPI(M) for the by-election to the Attappady block panchayat were found removed by the alleged outfit. The police suspected that the Maoists might have reached the spot by travelling through Onthamala forests bordering the Silent Valley National Park. ‘‘Thunderbolt, the special squad formed to check Maoist menace, has started an investigation. People in the region have been asked to remain vigilant against any possible operations by the Maoists,’’ said a senior police officer.