An important aspect of the RPCs functioning is the realisation of the slogan “All rights to the Adivasis/local people over Forests”. All kinds of restrictions and taxes on collection of forest produce were annulled. Forest produce can be freely collected and consumed. But there is a ban on taking away any kind of resources from the forest without permission from the RPCs. New entry of imperialist multinational companies (MNCs) and comprador companies has been blocked. Indiscriminate felling of forests and the robbing of valuable timber by the government and the timber mafia was stopped. While the people’s rights are guarenteed the RPCs also pay attention to balance the growing demand for timber as needs increase with the task of protecting forests.
In this they are assisted by the traditional practice of the adivasis. Living in the vast forests of our country they have preserved the forests and maintained the environment for several centuries through their judicious use of the land and the forest resources. It is only with the invasion and occupation of their territories by the so-called civilised society—first the British white colonialists and later the native brown sahibs into whose hands political power was transferred—that the forest began to be denuded very fast.
The positive impact of the people’s war and RPCs policies are confirmed by figures given in the ‘State of the Forest Report-2009’ released by the Forest Survey of India, which show that over the previous 4- 5 years, the dense forest in the Maoist-dominated districts of Dantewada, Kanker, Bastar, Rajnandgaon, Dhamtari and other districts in Chhattisgarh, had increased in its expanse. This shows the validity of the alternative model of development espoused by the revolutionaries vis-à-vis the anti-people development model being implemented by the ruling class reactionaries for the benefit of a handful of corporate sharks and imperialist vultures. The same is true of other natural resources also.
The spread of the people’s war in resource rich regions of Central and Eastern India has upset the plans of the Indian ruling classes and imperialists to plunder them. This vitally affects the projects they have lined up and ongoing demands they must satisfy to keep their system running. The seriousness of this can be gauged from the decision of the Modi regime to raise and deploy 27 new battallions of para-military in the Dandakaranya region, with the specific purpose of providing security to proposed mining and hydro-electric projects. A governemnt owned steel company, SAIL, will be footing the bill of 10 of them. Nothing could be more demonstrative of the driving interests behind Operation Green Hunt aimed at destroying the people’s war led by Maoists and the new political power that is being built.