Maoist resurgence makes Andhra Pradesh, Telangana jittery
HYDERABAD: The sudden spurt in activities of the banned CPI Maoist party and the civil wings allegedly affiliated with it, both in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, seems to be giving the two state governments the jitters. With more than 20 civil liberties organizations becoming active in the two states post bifurcation, security personnel now suspect that Maoists are trying to make fresh inroads into the two states with the support of the civil society. That perhaps explains why cops in both the states have started cracking down on civil rights organizations trying to raise their voice against Operation Green Hunt or organize meetings against it.
While on Thursday, 11 civil rights activists were arrested in Visakhapatnam, (six of them for trying to hold a press meet and five who were returning from the DIG camp office after attempts to submit a representation against their colleagues’ arrest), the Telangana cops foiled an anti-Operation Green Hunt meeting at Baghlingampalli in Hyderabad on September 24. Another such meeting was disrupted by the AP cops at the CPI office in Tirupati in the first week of October. Though prior to bifurcation, senior Telangana cops had ruled out the possibility of resurgence in the Maoist movement after the state is split, the presence of Naxalites has lately been visible in Adilabad district.
In fact, the DIG of that area too had admitted to having information about two Maoist squads being active in the district that shares borders with Gadchiroli area of Maharashtra. According to sources, Maoists escaped a possible exchange of fire in Adilabad just last month. In yet another indication of the changing reality, elaborate security arrangements were made, including deployment of Greyhounds, in and around the Jodheghat forests in the district on Wednesday when Telangana CM K Chandrasekhar Rao went to pay tributes to revolutionary Komaram Bheem on his death anniversary. According to a senior police official in Khammam, the Maoist presence has been visible in the district, especially in their old bastions, with militants frequently pasting posters, tying banners and even calling upon the people to observe the party formation day recently.
In AP, the Reds along the Andhra-Odisha Border (AOB) have stepped up their activities after AP CM N Chandrababu Naidu mooted bauxite mining with the support of tribals in Visakha Agency on World Tribals Day. Since then, Maoists have conducted two public meetings in Visakha Agency and one at the Odisha border, all of which saw heavy attendance by tribals. They have also killed almost five tribals in the AOB area by branding them police informers.
This apart, nearly 30 meetings have been organized by various parties and organizations in Visakha Agency since Naidu’s bauxite mining announcement, sources said. According to sources in the AP police department, the outlawed wing has shipped in cadre from Chhattisgarh and its military wing, PLGA company, and their movement has been visible right up to East Godavari where the Naxalite movement was wiped out over one and a half decades ago. The Reds are now trying to revive their old squads, said an official involved in anti-Naxalite operations. Senior cops in Adilabad too admit to having information about two Maoist squads being active in the district that shares borders with Gadchiroli area of Maharashtra.
Reds torch 2 mobile phone towers in Dumka village
Dumka: Maoists torched two mobile phone towers at Karhbinda village in Ramgarh police station area here on Friday morning “to protest against the arrest of top rebel leader Prabilda”. Witnesses said the rebels also raised anti-police slogans and announced a daylong bandh in Santhal Pargana on Saturday. Prabilda, who was a member of the CPI(Maoist) special area committee that was active in Santhal Pargana and bordering districts of Bihar, was arrested on September 26. The Maoists had organized a meeting in the village and around 11am, led a mob of 150 villagers to the site where the towers were located 200m apart, police said.
Villagers who were present at the site said the rebels poured diesel on the system units and set them ablaze. They also blocked the Dumka-Ramgarh road for hours. However, police took over 10 hours to reach the spot. DSP Anil Kumar Srivastava said Maoists were acting desperately after the arrest of their top leader. “We will take extra security measures to thwart the rebels’ efforts to spread violence,” Srivastava said. Prabil Da is wanted in over two dozen cases lodged against him in Dumka and Pakur districts, including the murder of Pakur SP Amarjit Balihar and his guards in 2013 and fatal ambush on a polling party during the Lok Sabha election this year.