Eliminating the Naxalites: Both Foot Soldiers & their Masters
It was late on 04 Apr 21 that approx. 2,000 personnel of the Special Task Force (STF), District Reserve Guard (DRG), District Force of Chhattisgarh Police, the CRPF and its elite COBRA unit were retreating to their base camp in Tarrem around noon, when they came under surprise ambush by the Maoist near Tekuligudaun hills. They had earlier been carrying out joint operation since 02 April after receiving intelligence inputs about Maoists in Silger and Bodaguda area in border district of Sukma of Chhattisgarh. It is notable that Sukma & Dantewada have been the Maoist infested areas of the State. The inputs specifically noted the presence of Hidma, the commander of the lethal Battalion 1 of the Maoists, in the area.
The Security Forces were tasked to comb the area but they found nothing unusual…except that two villages… Tekuligudaun and Jihragaon…a very clear indication of impending ambush which the forces missed out. There was a mayhem of shooting by the Maoist…apparently by LMG and rocket launchers too. There are some accounts that even the villagers were with the Maoists. It is intriguing though how 200-300 Maosists (apparently joined by some villagers) rounded up about 2000 strong trained security forces. Such strong and trained forces were virtually chased from place to place and attacked with impunity. The forces apparently could not retaliate like a unit under an effective leadership. It seems the divided forces under attack ran away for their lives.
Maoists and Naxalites have been bleeding Indian security forces since long. Thanks to the Leftist movement that they have managed to sustain it…not only for years but decades. It all began for the reasons clash of the classes, justified to some extent for the prevailing inequalities. However, in the present times, all those causes have lost its meaning and the continued Maoist Extremism have only two objectives…bleed the Indian Govt through insurgency and rule the downtrodden under shadow of violence. They split in 40 odd splinter groups. After their two factions Maoist Communist Centre of India and the People’s War Group merged to form CPI (Maoist) in 2004, they have apparently gathered some momentum in their disruptive activities duly supported by the enemies of India. In the recent decades, they have defied the reconciliatory approach by the govt. There is no doubt that they are getting supports from the other factions too, esp their other political wings and the foreign forces inimical to India, its progress. It is well known that the Maoist movement in India was supported by the Chinese but in the recent years numbering more than a decade, there has been support from Pakistani ISI too.
The Left Wing Extremist funding is through nefarious means…by extortion, taxing the adjacent villages through fear & violence, ransom from the contractors working in the LWE areas and also from abroad. Paki Fake Indian Currencies and arms reached them through Nepal and Bangladesh. After the note ban in 2016, loads of gunny-bags filled with FICN were burnt/discarded. Their arm procurement was halted to large extent. They have also set-up arms manufacturing hubs and sell it to others to earn. They mostly loot the arms from the Indian police and security forces but of late, they have procured sophisticated Chinese, German and American arms too.
The present CPI (Maoist) has tried to spread their wings in the tribal and jungle area with their political wing support over surface, mostly comprising of the politburos, the Urban Naxals or the Maoists. It is also understood that even the national political party CPI(M) has sympathy for the terrorists bleeding our security forces. They have been committing heinous crimes against the security forces in the past too. The major Maoist attacks on the security forces after 2009 have taken place largely in Sukma/Dantewada in Chhattisgarh; Koraput in Orisa; Begusarai, Palamu, Gaya & Aurangabad in Bihar and Gadchiroli in Maharashtra. Prior to 2009, many parts of Andhra and Maharashtra were also affected. Kerala too under Communist rule has Maoist cadres but has not resorted to any major attacks. There is no doubt the Indian govt in past did launched some concerted attacks on the Maoists too, inflicting some major casualties but their network have somehow remained.
Union govt statistics showed that 3,782 people were killed in 11,668 incidents of Maoist led Left Wing Extremist (LWE) violence between January 2010 and March 2019 with Chhattisgarh topping the list. The govt reports claimed that in the period, there have been significant reduction (26.7%) in the LWE violence incidences and 39.5% reduction in deaths. Of the dead and injured, the security forces have borne the brunt the most. This is highly unacceptable on any account. Their meteorical rise in spread have been reversed from shrunk from 330 police stations in 76 districts of over 10 states in 2013, to 251 police stations in 60 districts spread across eight states in 2018 with just 30 districts accounting 89%. But why should such violence be permitted even in those 30 districts? It is surprising why Chhattisgarh state govt and the Home Minister of India has not launched a major counter-offensive against the recent Sukma Maoist attack.
The activities of the Maoists in Chhattisgarh have increased after the present Congress govt came to power in 2018. Many national leaders in past have repeatedly indicated that the Maoists within India pose greater threat than our enemies across borders. Naxal / Maoist movements of past against the indifferent govts, against underdeveloped regions could have been for a cause but their recent acts against the workers undertaking infrastructure developments, indicate their purpose have changed. The development efforts by the govt should be more inclusive with the local people taking some benefit the least rather than outsider (exploiting local resources). This was possibly the reason why “Op Green Hunt” did not succeed the way it was to be. It is also a fact that now they are not working for the rights of downtrodden but to assume power through armed struggle against Indian State which is unacceptable on any account. There could also be the assistance of anti-India forces in our neighbourhood.
The Maoists & Naxals of the present times have to be either brought to the main-stream or be neutralised. They cannot be let to wage war against the state…killing the security forces and the police…and get away with the crime…and in this context, Hidma and his associates do not deserve to live. Eliminating their foot soldiers alone is not enough. Their urban coordinators, fund providers, arms suppliers as well as the political heads too must be eliminated. In the Apr 3rd attack, it is believed that they used LMGs and RPGs. Where did these weapons come from? How could the local law enforcement agencies be so clueless? Who are the influential people in the villages who rendered their support to Hidma…for whatever reasons, need to be taken to task. All these bandits are the enemy no. 1 of our citizen. World believes “Modi hai to Mumkin Hai” then why no concerted efforts have been initiated by the Union & State Govts, is beyond comprehension. It is time to root-out the Maoist threats from India.