Maoist guerillas have adopted a belligerent stand against the Centre’s move to send security forces to Maoist-controlled areas in several States, by declaring that neither the commando force raised by the CRPF nor the Rashtriya Rifles of the Army could suppress the revolutionary movement.
The recent offensive in the Bastar forests of Chhattisgarh by the CRPF’s Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (CoBRA) and the Chhattisgarh police was ‘courageously’ repulsed by the Maoist guerillas who killed at least six security forces personnel. “After suffering the biggest loss, the commandos caught several unarmed Adivasis and killed them in cold blood,” Mr. Azad, spokesperson of the Maoist Central Committee alleged in a statement here on Tuesday.
Referring to the September 18 offensive in the forest areas of Dantewada district in Chhattisgarh, Mr. Azad said the massive operation was part of a bigger offensive being taken up in Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal. The brutal onslaught in Dandakarnya showed the extreme demoralisation and desperation of the “fascist clique” at the Centre over its failure to lay hands on the mineral wealth in the Adivasi-inhabited regions in eastern and central India, he alleged.
The Centre was planning an ‘aerial bombardment’ of some Maoist-held areas even at the cost of civilian casualties and destruction of clusters of villages, he said. The Centre had already tried ‘Vietnam type’ resettlement of adivasis in ‘strategic hamlets’ through the Salwa Judum campaign in the Bastar forests.
Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram’s visits to Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand on September 25 was akin to the “morale-boosting trips” by Donald Rumsfeld and George Bush to Iraq and Afghanistan, Mr. Azad said.
The advertisements in newspapers on naxal violence was part of a simultaneously taken up psychological war, but such ‘cheap propaganda’ was bound to backfire as people were witnessing daily the violence perpetrated by the security forces, he said.
Conceding that the arrest of Kobad Ghandy was a ‘great loss’ to the revolutionary movement in India, Mr. Azad said Ghandy was betrayed by a ‘weak element’ in the party. The courier had led the Special Intelligence Branch (SIB) of Andhra Pradesh and the intelligence wing in Delhi to the Bhikaji Cama Place in South Delhi, where Ghandy had an appointment after returning from a guerilla zone in the country.
Ghandy was arrested on September 17 and not on September 20 as the police claimed, he said, charging that the police had planned to ‘torture and murder’ him, but the intervention of democratic civil rights organisations foiled their plans.