November 16, 2010

Maoist key result area: Destruction of 33 schools, 105 roads, 13 rly properties

12 Nov, 2010, 03.50AM IST, Bharti Jain, ET Bureau

NEW DELHI: Maoists continue to hit at symbols of welfare and development while carrying on with their rhetoric about neglect of tribal areas by the state. Over the last 10 months, the Left-wing extremists unleashed 278 attacks on government buildings and infrastructure works across seven states, destroying 33 schools, 20 panchayat offices, 105 roads/culverts and 38 communication towers.

Railways continue to be a favoured target, having recorded 22 Naxal attacks until October 31, 2010. Of these, Chhattisgarh witnessed 13 attacks on railway properties, Maharashtra 12, West Bengal 7 and Jharkhand 6.

Majority of Naxalite attacks in 2010 focused on forest roads and culverts. As many as 105 forest roads and culverts were destroyed by Maoists, as compared 126 in the whole of 2009, in an apparent bid to instill a sense of fear in contractors to meet extortion demands.

Public sector units and works in Maoist-infested areas witnessed 22 attacks, up from 17 through 2009. NMDC’s premises in Chhattisgarh were targeted in 11 different incidents in the first 10 months of 2010. Eight attacks were directed at the Gramin Sadak Nirman Yojana in three states. Essar Pipelines, which faced 6 attacks last year, saw only one attack in 2010.

There was also some respite from Naxalites’ targeting of communication towers, with attacks coming down from 67 last year to 38 in the first ten months of 2010. Of these, Jharkhand accounted for 14 attacks and Bihar for 12 attacks.

Government’s psychological warfare highlighting “mindless” attacks on schools by Maoists appears to have had some positive effect. Such incidents were down from 67 in 2009 to 38 until October 31 this year. However, panchayat offices and buildings continued to bear the brunt, with 20 of them coming under Maoist fire as compared to 23 in the whole of last year.

Mining units saw nine attacks in the first 10 months of 2010, a three-fold rise from 3 attacks witnessed through 2009. Six of the nine incidents of mines being targeted this year were reported from Jharkhand.

Power plants were not spared either. Maoists attacked 3 power plants, one each in Chhattisgarh, West Bengal and Orissa. Last year, two attacks on power plants were reported, both in Maharashtra. Maoists also destroyed pole/transmission towers in two different incidents in Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand.

Maoists’ targeting of key infrastructure and development works stands in direct conflict with their so-called struggle against neglect and deprivation by the state. “It only proves that the Left-wing extremism is nothing more than red terror, devoid of any reasoning or ideology,” noted a senior official of the security establishment.

As many as 577 civilians and 264 security forces have been killed in a total of 1842 incidents of Maoist violence in the first 10 months of 2010.

November 15, 2010

Unite in fight against Maoists: Buddhadeb

Balarampur(Purulia),Nov14(IANS): West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee Sunday urged the people to unite in the fight against the Maoists and uproot them from the state.

'Maoist activity is the biggest problem in our state. They are creating hindrance in development work. They are also obstructing the schools and panchayats from running smoothly, besides killing innocent people,' Bhattacharjee said at a rally organised by the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M).

'It's high time we all come together to fight against the Maoists. People will not forgive them for their politics of killings,' he said in this Maoist-affected belt of Purulia district.

Bhattacharjee said the Left-wing ultras have shifted their base to the Ayodhya Hills area after finding the going tough in West Midnapore's Lalgarh in the face of strong action by security forces.

'They are now committing atrocities in Arsa, Balarampur, Jhalda, Bandwan and Bagmundi areas during the night. They have killed several of our party supporters and leaders.

'The Maoists think that by killing innocent people, they will come to power in Bengal or they will be able to rule in Delhi, but we will not let them carry out their activities,' he said.

Despite repeated denials from the rebels, the chief minister maintained that Intelligence Branch officer Partha Biswas and school teacher Soumyajit Basu had been abducted by the Maoists.

'Both of them came here to teach the tribal people the usage of furnace, but they were abducted by the Maoists. I am trying my best to free them,' Bhattacharjee said.

The chief minister's meeting at Purulia was part of his tour to win back the support of rural population prior to the assembly elections - scheduled to be held in the first half of 2011.

Maoist Leadership is Divided: Buddhadeb

Kolkata: Nov 12, 2010- Amid speculation whether top Maoist leader Kisheji was dead, West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee tonight stated he has heard about the same and that the Maoist leadership was now divided.

"I also heard about it (Kishenji is dead). The Maoist leadership is now divided. They (Maoists) are now cornered," he said.

Posters alluding to 'martyrdom' of Kishenji found by the police have intensified speculation over whether the Maoist top leader, who has not made any public appearance for eight months, is dead.

"Change has taken place in some areas of West Midnapore and Bankura where people are resisting the ultras, but recently in Purulia the Maoist problem has aggravated. They have kidnapped two persons. We are trying to free them although we have not yet succeeded", Bhattacharjee told a TV channel here.

"Politically we have achieved some success but the situation is still tough," he said.

He also rubbished Trinamool Congress' charge that CPI (M) 'harmads' (goons) were killing people in the guise of joint forces.

Bhattacharjee said that his party indirectly benefited from the operation of the joint forces but "it is wrong to say that joint force were sent to give benefit to us".

Not only in West Bengal, central force was sent to Jharkhand, Orissa and Chhattisgarh to combat the Maoists, he said.

On Union Home Minister P Chidambaram's assurance to TC leaders that the role of the joint force would be inquired, Bhattacharjee quipped, "what will he say? They don't have time to listen to all these bogus things. Those who are directing the joint force are not so foolish".(PTI)

OUTLOOK, Filed On: Nov 12, 2010 23:17 IST


A protest michil agaist 'Maoist's' in Salboni (in junglemahal area of West Midnapore District)