Maoists claim responsibility for Aurangabad explosion
Aurangabad: Maoists on Monday took responsibility for Sunday’s blast at Khadiha canal under Deo police station area of Aurangabad district. A CRPF commando was killed and two others were injured in the attack. In a statement, central zone committee spokesman of CPI (Maoist) Pranjeet said the blast was a revenge of Bandh-Goreya “fake encounter” in which four of their colleagues were killed by the security personnel.
Meanwhile, police have detained more than 12 persons in connection with Sunday’s blast. A three-member Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) team from Patna collected samples from the blast site on Monday to ascertain the kind of explosive used to trigger the blast. A police official said on the condition of anonymity that top Maoists Nitesh and Pramjeet may have been involved in the blast. A massive manhunt has been launched in the district to arrest the Maoists involved in the attack.
Zonal IG N H Khan said anti-Maoist operation would be intensified in the area. “The Rohtas and Gaya police have also been asked to join the operations,” said the IG. Three cylinder bombs planted on Deo-Kanchanpur road had exploded when the commandos of 205th CoBRA unit were on an anti-Maoist operation in the area following information about the presence of ultras. Aporva Deka of CRPF’s CoBRA unit, who hailed from Assam, was killed in the attack.
Weapons, explosives seized in Jharkhand: Police
A cache of weapons and explosives was seized during anti-Maoist operations in Jharkhand’s West Singhbhum district on Monday, a senior police officer said. “Fourteen firearms, 200 gelatin sticks and other material were seized from a jungle area under Bandgao police station,” West Singhbhum’s Additional Superintendent of Police Manish Ranjan told IANS. The seized firearms include two carbines and four rifles. Maoist guerrillas are active in 18 of the 22 districts of the state.
Maharashtra to give district officers arrest power for curbing Naxal menace
To tighten its noose on Naxalites, the Maharashtra government is set to introduce a new law to give special powers to the superintendent of police and district collector in Naxal-affected districts. The law will be applicable on any people found favouring Naxalites through speech or distribution of literature among other things. Inspired by the recent law in Chhattisgarh, the home department is currently studying its draft to form a similar law here. “In all probability, we will be able to send it to the cabinet in the next 15 days and bring it to assembly in the monsoon session. At present, it is with the legal committee,” home secretary KP Bakshi told dna.
Sources claimed the law will have provisions similar to those of Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Act and Maharashtra Prevention of Dangerous Activities Act that empower government officials at the district level to arrest those involved in anti-national activities. Like in these Acts, the new law will give officials the right to arrest the accused for the first three days and later for 21 days with the permission of the additional chief secretary of the Home department.
Faced with major setbacks, naxals brainstorm strategy
Visakhapatnam: Crippled by severe blows in the form of arrests, surrenders and encounters, the CPI (Maoists) reportedly held a review meeting headed by the Andhra-Odisha Border Special Zonal Committee (AOBSZC) members at the AOB a couple of days ago. Senior AOBSZC members like Dubasi Sankar alias Mahender and Narayana Swamy alias Damodar reportedly attended the meeting that assessed the present situation in the East Division and alleged differences among the cadres and leaders, sources said.
According to the sources, the meeting discussed the losses incurred by the area committees of Galikonda and Korukonda in the East Division due to surrenders and arrests, besides the encounter at Marripakalu-Palasamudram in Koyyuru mandal on May 4 in which Galikonda Area Committee secretary VRL Gopal alias Azad, Julumuri Anand and a woman naxal were killed by security forces. Senior leader and PLGA company chief Kudumula Venkata Rao alias Ravi also died due to illness in April.
Surrender by Sarita, the first woman commander of PLGA Company in AOB, along with another senior cadre Bonangi Ramulamma alias Bharati in the last week of May also shook the Maoist rank and file. Sarita had trained many squads in the AOB after she underwent special training in Chhattisgarh. Senior woman naxal Vantala Chechu alias Vasantha, the wife of division committee member Krishna, was also arrested by the cops in the same month. For the past six months, squad members like Jhansi and Russo as well as around 50 militia members either surrendered or were arrested.
Under these circumstances, the top naxal leadership in AOB has swung into action to strengthen the rank and file in the East Division, which shares borders with the Maoist strongholds of Malkangiri and Koraput districts in Odisha on the one side, Chhattisgarh on another side and a little stretch with East Godavari. If the naxal movement near Chhattisgarh is weakened, then it would is a major cause of concern for them, the sources said, adding that the Maoists always try to protect the AOB areas for the sake of their heartland in Chhattisgarh.
A senior security personnel on conditions of anonymity told TOI that AOBSZC leaders Mahender and Damodar enquired into the Marripakalu encounter as well as the death of PLGA commander Ravi. According to sources, the meeting was held for two consecutive days and the members discussed at length about damage control measures. Mahender also reportedly enquired about senior leader Chalapati’s photograph along with wife Aruna that the cops were able to get from Azad’s laptop.
According to the sources, the senior leaders also discussed about bringing in leaders who are familiar with the terrain from other strongholds to carry forward the movement in East Division. As per information available, the naxal leadership is planning to bring Kakuri Pandanna alias Jagan, a tribal leader, as the chief of East Division. Pandanna was the security head of central committee leader Ramakrishna Alias RK.
’55 Maoist frontal organisations in Maharashtra’
The head of Maharashtra’s Anti-Naxal Operations (ANO) unit Mr.Shivaji Bodkhe on Monday said that the Maoists’ network was spreading rapidly in urban areas of the state and the Maoist movement was no more limited to Gadchiroli and Gondia district.
“There is a perception that the Maoism is limited to only Gadchiroli and Gondia district of Maharashtra. Many in the police department also carry this perception. But this movement is not limited to tough and dense terrains of forest areas. It is spreading rapidly in urban areas through its frontal organizations. The police need to be alert and focus on these urban frontal originations,” said Mr.Bodkhe, who is a Special Inspector General (IG) of Police of the ANO.
He was addressing the trainee policemen at the ANO unit at Surabardi here.
“There are around 55 Maoist frontal organizations working in the urban area of Maharashtra. The government has already declared them frontal organizations. The Maoists have employed a double-pronged strategy of fighting guerrilla warfare in forest areas and to create unrest and dissatisfaction among the people against the government by the means of protests,” the IG added.
He also claimed that the Maoists were carrying out “secret propaganda” in Mumbai, Thane, Pune, Nadurbar, Dhule, Jalgaon and Nashik areas of the state.
“We only know about the Maoist violence against the police in forest areas and their opposition to the developmental works. But their frontal originations have an altogether different modus operandi. Groups like Kabir Kala Manch are trying to attract workers and students and are trying to put them against the established system by teaching them about Marx, Lenin and Mao,” claimed Mr.Bodhkhe.
The IG also called ‘Bharat Jan Andolan’, a network of grassroots organizations founded by former IAS officer B.D.Sharma, a “Maoist frontal organization”.
“It is important to collect information about these groups and take some preventive action. Until now, the Maoists were trying to mislead people of the areas which lacked in the communication network, education, and development. Now they have shifted their focus on the urban area. We are marching towards development, but the Maoists want ‘change of guard’ in the country through these frontal organizations. It is the responsibility of the police to stop the youngsters who are getting attracted towards this movement, to tell them about the government’s developmental initiatives and to also warn them of the danger of Maoism,” stated Mr.Bodkhe.
Odisha to seek two more battalions of central armed forces to tackle Maoist activities
BHUBANESWAR: Despite the claim of improvement in leftwing extremism (LWE) situation, the state government would seek two more battalions of central armed forces to tackle the Maoist situation in Odisha. It was decided in the unified command meeting held here under the chairmanship of chief secretary A P Padhi. “We would request the state government to seek two more battalions of any central armed forces like Boarder Security Force (BSF), Central Reserve Police Force, Sashastra Seema Bal and Indo Tibetan Border Police,” said a senior police officer requesting anonymity.
Currently the Centre has deployed total 17 battalions of central armed police forces including eight each battalions of CRPF and Boarder Security Force and one battalion of Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (COBRA), a specialized unit of the CRPF in the state to tackle the LWE situation. The state government deployed state police and district voluntary force besides deputation of central forces.
Though details of the meeting were kept under wrap, sources said the state government along with top officers of BSF, CRPF and intelligence bureau chalked action plan to deal with the situation. “It was discussed to have coordination between forces deployed in two adjoining states as Maoists shift their base to neighboring states when there was operation from one side. Besides, emphasis was also laid on timely sharing of intelligence inputs, coordination between state and central forces and strategies to win confidence of local people in LWE areas,” the top cop said.
Since the LWE situation is still challenging in districts like Malkangiri, Koraput, Nuapada, Rayagada, Kandhamal, Kalahandi, Balangir, Nayagarh, Rourkela and Bargarh, more forces are likely to be deployed in these districts.
The situation, however, improved in districts like Jajpur, Dhenkanal, Keonjhar, Myurbhanj, Gajapati, Ganjam, Nabarangapur, Sambalpur, Deogarh and Sundargarh. In 2015, total 72 LWE related incidents were reported in the state involving death of 26 civilians, four security personnel and nine hardcore LWE cadres. During the period, total 53 LWE cadres were arrested and 255 weapons and 168 improvised explosive devices and large quantity of explosives were recovered. Total 64 LWE cadres/militias surrendered in the state in 2015.
Two CRPF camps opened in Saranda
ROURKELA: Two CRPF camps were opened in Saranda forest, one km from Odisha, to prevent cross-border movement of the Maoists and strengthen anti-Maoist operation on Monday. The camps at Nuagaon and Tirilposhi areas of Saranda in West Singhbhum district of Jharkhand will fill up the security ‘vacuum’ in the vulnerable forest pockets used by the Maoists to operate on both sides of the border. Rourkela-based Inspector General of Police (Western Range) RK Sharma said the presence of security personnel in Saranda forest and the existing camps at Lathikata and Chandiposh in Sundargarh district of Odisha would provide strategic advantage to security forces of both States in containing Maoist activities. Before establishment of the two camps in Jharkhand, the Maoists were using these areas to carry out cross-border movement. Now, the security forces can be mobilised from Nuagaon and Tirilposh in Jharkhand besides Lathikata and Chandiposh in Odisha, he added. Prior to this, the Jharkhand police had at least a dozen of CRPF camps at strategic locations in Saranda forest.
Two police jawans injured in blast triggered by Naxals
Two police jawans were today injured in a pipe bomb blast triggered by Naxals in Chhattisagrh’s Narayanpur district, some 400 kms from here.
The incident took place in a forest near Kundla police camp under Kurusnar police station limits when a team was going on a patrol near an under-construction bridge, Narayanpur SP Abhishek Meena told PTI. When the jawans were heading for the duty, the rebels exploded the bomb which caused minor injuries to two constables, the SP said.
SABYASACHI PRODUCED IN G’PATI COURT
Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda was produced before the Gajapati District and Sessions Judge Court on Monday after being taken from the Brahmapur Central Jail amidst tight security. He was produced before the court for hearing of six cases lodged against him in 2006. He was involved in the jail, police station and treasury arson cases on March 24 and 25 in 2006 at R Udaygiri in Gajapati district. He had also attacked a sub-jail and a police station. He also took hostage officer-in-charge of the local police station and a jailer. Panda’s lawyers Deepak Kumar Patnaik and Swarup Kumar Pal defended him while Government advocate VSN Raju defended the Government action.The court decided to give the order of the hearing on July 11.