Maoists regrouping in State

Exchange of fire between police and Maoists in Kumaram Bheem Asifabad and Bhadradri-Kothagudem districts on Tuesday night and Wednesday respectively have buttressed the fact that the movement of Left-wing extremist cadre has increased recently in Telangana.

Senior police officers confirmed that the ‘red rebels’ are trying to gain foothold again in the former Naxal bastions, in the wake of change of guard in the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist).

It was since March that their movement was noticeable, especially in Asifabad-Mancherial and Kothagudem regions, an officer told The Hindu on condition of anonymity.

“We were constantly tracking their movements in the Naxal-infested districts of north Telangana for the past few months. As greenery returned, the movement intensified in the last week of June and first week of July, and they escaped couple of times. But, the ‘hide-and-seek’ game won’t last long, we will flush them out soon,” he said.

COVID-19 situation

With the police tied down with COVID-19 situation, the Maoists feet it’s a right time for them to penetrate into the interior villages by taking up the issues of tribals, the officer said. “Now, the Maoists are having a tough time in getting sympathy of tribals. The current situation is different from what it was 10 years back,” he said. When asked about the new strategies adopted by the rebels, a police officer who is leading the combing operation, said: There is no new strategy. They are just trying to test the waters.

Speaking on Maoist recruitment from Telangana, another officer said that the new commander-in-chief of the banned outfit, Nambala Keshava Rao aka Basavaraj, wants to regain the ground and secure strongholds in the State by recruiting more people.

“At present there is shortage of force and the State committees and other leaders, especially those working underground, were given the task of recruitment to strengthen the cadre,” he said, adding that in the past couple of months a few youngsters from the bordering districts were ‘motivated’ and taken to the forests of Chhattisgarh for training.

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Printable version | Oct 24, 2020 1:34:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/maoists-regrouping-in-state/article32095249.ece

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