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New formula to disarm Maoists August 31, 2006

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Josy Joseph
Friday, September 01, 2006 00:40 IST

NEW DELHI: The possibility of confining armed Maoists of Nepal into seven cantonments after disarming them has brightened with a UN proposal slowly finding acceptability in various quarters. Indian sources say that the new formula is a “climbdown” from India’s original demand that the Maoists be fully disarmed before they join the interim government.

The new formula doing the rounds in Kathmandu, New Delhi, and floated by UN team which visited Nepal early this month speaks of a 50/50 arrangement. Under this proposal, the weapons of Maoists would be kept under lock, keys to which would be with both UN observers and Maoist leadership. Simultaneously the Nepal Army would be confined to the barracks and would be under strict orders not to carry out any operation against the Maoists.

The Maoist cadres would also not resort to any operation during the period. Under the plan, the colonial legacy of creating cantonments, special areas for military, would now find new meaning as seven cantonments would be created to house Maoist cadres.

India has all this while been demanding that the Maoists be fully disarmed before they become part of the interim government which would then hold the Constituent Assembly elections.

It has to be seen what the final shape of the proposal for disarming Maoists would take.

Various proposals are circulating, but an amicable agreement on that front is crucial for Nepal to move forward in its quest for peace. Everything including Interim Government, Interim Constitution, Constituent Assembly, and the new final Constitution, future of the King etc hinge on the crucial step of disarming the Maoists.

UN secretary general Kofi Annan has appointed Ian Martin as his Personal Representative in Nepal to expedite the integration of Maoists into the mainstream. Martin was the chief of the United Nations Office of the Higher Commissioner for Human Rights during the recent anti-monarch protests. Martin’s team would work on the basis of a detailed report submitted by a team led by Staffan de Mistura, which spent a week in Nepal early this month.

After his meetings in UN headquarters, Martin returned to Nepal on Sunday to begin work.

Once the Maoists are disarmed, the rebels would join the interim government. Maoist chief Prachanda is likely to stay out of the government.

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Centre annoyed with note to hide from Naxals August 31, 2006

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Says it shows Maharashtra officials are shirking responsibility to protect people from the extremists

Narendra Kaushik

New Delhi: The Centre has pulled up the Maharashtra government for a circular, reportedly issued in July by the administration in Naxal-affected districts asking MLAs and zilla parishad members not to venture out during a week-long bandh called by the extremists from July 28.

Naxal groups had called for the bandh in Gadchiroli, Chandrapur, Gondia and Bhandara districts to mark the 34th death anniversary of their founder Charu Majumdar.

The circular was issued over a week before the bandh.

Highly-placed officials said the home ministry was annoyed with the approach of the district administration in the four Naxal-affected districts.

The issue was brought up on Wednesday at a meeting of 13 Naxal-affected states in Delhi, called to discuss better co-ordination among the states and Centre to tackle the menace. The Union home ministry pointed out that the circular indicated the district administration’s unwillingness to protect the common public and VIPs from Naxalite violence.

Sources revealed that home secretary V K Duggal, who presided over the seven-hour long meeting, made no effort to hide his displeasure and said the circular was not in good taste. Maharashtra director general of police (DGP) P S Pasricha had attended the meeting along with a colleague.

When contacted by Mumbai Mirror, Duggal did not deny the existence of the circular, but all he said was, “The states don’t have to consult the Central government (on security-related issues).”

WHAT THE MEETING DISCUSSED

To make air support available to all Naxal-affected states. At present, only Chhattisgarh has two helicopters, which are used for transportation and evacuation of forces during security operations. The home secretary advised states to form consortiums and take helicopters on rent.

Strengthen anti-Naxal desk in Union home ministry to see monitor development measures initiated in affected regions with the help of Central grants.

Karkala: Naxals Escape by a Whisker during Combing Operations near Shringeri August 31, 2006

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Are you looking for property in M A N G A L O R E ?

Daijiworld Special Correspondent from Karkala/Shringeri (GA)

Karkala/Shringeri, Aug 31: A group of 8-10 Naxalites who had resided at a house at Kadegundi near Shringeri managed to escape by a whisker from Anti-Naxal Force (ANF) during the combing operations on Tuesday August 29 morning.

The ANF and Shringeri police staff had gone for a combing operation at Kadegundi on Monday August 28 night. Kadegundi which is near Bukyadi Bail near Nemmar is surrounded by woods and rivulets. Police had reached the place by walking more than 13 kilometres via Yedagunda and Mundodi.

Having received a sure tip-off that Naxals were residing in a hide-out, the ANF and police team had managed to reach the spot by crawling their way. It was after 8 am on Tuesday morning that the police spotted a sentry keeping vigil at Kadegundi. He was busy reading newspaper of Sunday. Since the place is surrounded by rivulets and a small water fall, sentry could not hear the sound of the police surrounding him from all corners. The only difficulty that was faced by the police that they had climb up a hillock.

It was when the police were just 7-8 feet away from him that he saw the them. He immediately signaled the coming of the police and warned his associates. He also passed a message to the next sentry and fled the place. Another person who was on a tree, also managed to escape. Though police carried out extensive search operations in that area, the Naxalites who have thorough knowledge of the forests, managed to escape.

The police found Sunday’s newspaper, a pair of footwear, a biscuit pack and a chocolate pack on the spot. The 10 inch Bata footwear is similar to the one police seized from Mallika, a Naxalites who had been arrested some time ago.

The police are still carrying out search operations in the area.

Maoists flay assault on KGH CMO August 30, 2006

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Wednesday August 30 2006 12:04 IST
VISAKHAPATNAM: CPI (Maoist) East Division condemned the assault on KGH casualty medical officer B Bangarraju, stating that it was the medical and health sector whose lapses have to be rectified and doctors should not be mistaken to be the main reason for problems being faced by the people.

Reasons for incidents like the death of Srinivas, which provoked the attack, should be examined properly and people should not jump to conclusions.

In a press release received by some newspaper offices here on Tuesday, CPI (Maoist) east division secretary Jagadeesh asserted that though it was the responsibility of the government to set things right, the fact that medical professionals were distancing themselves from people by resorting to various unethical practices, should not be overlooked.

He sought to know what steps were taken to break the nexus between the doctors of government hospitals and private practitioners who were causing exploitation of the poor.

Jagadeesh also wanted to know what the government was doing to control viral fevers, which claimed scores of lives, particularly in tribal areas.

He regretted that the ministers and officials concerned were self-content by making statements that fevers were under control.

REFORMS: Jagadeesh also alleged that the reforms being implemented by the Central Government failed in improving the living standards. The governments were merely painting a rosy picture of the economy, he observed.

Coord. meet decides to fine-tune operations against Naxals August 30, 2006

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New Delhi, Aug 30: The Coordination meeting of representatives of the Naxal affected states on Wednesday decided to fine tune the entire operation against Naxalism.

At the meeting attended by the Chief Secretaries and the Director General of Police of the affected states and chaired by Union Home Secretary VK Duggal, a review of the situation prevailing in the Naxal-affected states was made.

The meet also called for greater coordination between the different state and Centre agencies to tackle the menace of Naxalism. Different security agencies and the concerned States were asked to submit a report on the ground situation. Considering the threat posed by Naxals on the railway networks, the meeting also called for coordination among Railway Protection Force (RPF), Government Railway Police (GRP) and state police to strengthen security, safety and protection of trains. It was also decided that Naxalism should not be seen as a security concern alone and that the government would continue to help in the developmental works in the region. The Centre today said that the fruits of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act should also reach the Naxal affected regions and that funds would be released for the development of those regions by giving additional money from the Backward Region Development Fund.

It was also reported that the meeting decided the role of the Salvajudum` or the `local resistance groups` would not be curbed and that their sphere of activity would also not be expanded to new villages.

Fortification of the police station was also decided as the officials agreed that the Naxalites were getting their weapons by looting police stations.

The influence of Naxalism has been growing all over the country as out of the total of 12,476 police stations, Naxal violence was reported from 509 police stations in 11 states last year.

Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Orissa, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Uttaranchal and Uttar Pradesh are some of the states affected by Naxalite violence.

Bureau Report

VK Duggal holds naxal meet August 30, 2006

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Wednesday, August 30, 2006 03:30:59 pm

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Home Seceretary V K Duggal is chairing a meeting in Delhi today (Aug 30) of Cabinet Secretaries and Director Generals of Police of all thirteen naxal-affected states.

The Naxal Co-ordination Centre meeting is being held to fine tune the strategies prepared by the states to fight the naxal menace. The meeting takes place before the Chief Ministers’ conference with Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil early next month.

The Centre’s thrust would be on greater intelligence sharing among the affected states and the local police and central paramilitary forces deployed in affected areas. The Centre is also likely to emphasise on filling vacancies in the state police forces of the affected states.

Special anti-naxal force on the cards August 30, 2006

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Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: The meeting of the coordination centre on naxalite menace will be held here on Wednesday amidst reports that a special combat force of nearly 14,000 personnel would be raised to tackle in 13 States the internal security challenge to the country.

The proposed anti-naxalite force would comprise 9,000 personnel of the Central paramilitary and State police forces and 5,000 ex-servicemen trained in fighting terrorism and dealing with improvised explosive devices and mines. The force is currently undergoing training in specialised camps set up by the Army in Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh and other places, sources in the security establishment said.

Action plans

Sources said the Army was making available engineers trained in identifying IEDs, disposal of bombs, and using detectors and jammers for the force, which would be equipped with highly advanced weapons used by counter-insurgency forces elsewhere in the country. As many as 52 companies of the Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) and India Reserve (IR) Battalions are also being trained to carry out anti-naxal tasks.

At Wednesday’s meeting, to be chaired by Union Home Secretary V.K. Duggal, the focus is likely to be on discussion of action plans being implemented by States hit by naxal violence

Centre convenes meet on Naxal menace August 30, 2006

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New Delhi, Aug 30: As part of its multi-pronged strategy to thwart Naxal menace, the Centre will review the situation in 13 affected states at a high-level meeting here on Wednesday. With nearly a third of the country facing the problem, Union Home Secretary V K Duggal will discuss the coordination with Chief Secretaries and Directors General of Police of the affected states.

The quarterly meeting of the coordination centre will review the status of various policies involving intelligence gathering, networking and coordination between the Centre and Naxal-affected states, Home Ministry sources said.

The meeting assumes significance as influence of Naxalism has been growing all over the country as out of the total of 12,476 police stations, Naxal violence was reported from 509 police stations in 11 states last year.

The states affected by Naxalite violence include Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Orissa, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Uttaranchal and Uttar Pradesh.

The meeting will review to what extent the states have succeeded in drawing up a time-bound plan to strengthen vulnerable police stations in Naxal-affected areas in terms of additional manpower, modern weaponry, communication equipment, well protected buildings and funds.

Sharing of intelligence among affected states and the success of inter-state joint operations will also come up for scrutiny. Security of jails and armouries and strict enforcement of laws to curb Naxal violence are some other issues likely to be discussed, they said, pointing to the major jailbreaks in Orissa and Bihar.

Bureau Report

UAVs to track NAXAL red terror in Chhattisgarh August 30, 2006

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Subodh Ghildiyal
[ 30 Aug, 2006 0124hrs ISTTIMES NEWS NETWORK ]

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NEW DELHI: The government is set to unleash unmanned air vehicles (UAV) to map the movement and positions of Naxalites in Chhattisgarh, in what is an aggressive attempt to tackle the rising threat of ‘red terror’.

Top government sources said UAVs would be pressed into “air surveillance” to gather information on positioning of Naxalites in the vast jungles.

Paramilitary forces in these jungles have been unable to gain an upper hand for lack of knowledge of the inhospitable terrain.

The UAV-procured intelligence would be used to plan pin-pointed offensives by ground forces. If the Centre’s move comes through, paramilitary forces, mainly the CRPF, and state police may assume a pro-active role in pursuing Naxalites for the first time.

Till now, the Maoists, familiar with the jungles, surprised the forces at will, inflicting heavy casualties on them as well as on anti-Naxal salva judum tribals in relief camps.

In Chhattisgarh, the superior striking ability of Naxals is evident from the rise in incidents, with the state witnessing 424 strikes till July 2006 against 225 in the corresponding period in 2005.

The air force has also been drafted to the state’s anti-Naxal fight. Chhattisgarh DGP and the chief secretary met top IAF brass to seek air support.

A senior home ministry official said helicopters would not be used for firing at Naxalites as it was against the government policy to use air power against its own people. “They are for defensive purposes, like evacuation,” he said.

As the Centre moves to supplement ground penetration with air surveillance by UAVs, it is seeking to provide impetus to development activities, the lack of which has been used effectively by Maoists to lure tribals into their fold.

An inter-ministerial committee would be instituted to monitor work done on providing livelihood and amenities to the deprived population.

Comprising ministries of rural development, environment & forest, panchayati raj, tribal affairs and the Planning Commission, the stress is on making people feel part of the mainstream. Development and security will be merged in an anti-Naxal cell to be activated in the Union home ministry by September.

Cleared by the Union cabinet and to be headed by an additional secretary, officials will work on the ground to monitor progress and make suggestions, which will form part of the interaction between the Centre and states.

More securitymen killed by Naxals than by J&K militants: Centre, states discuss today August 30, 2006

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Raman KirpalPosted online: Wednesday, August 30, 2006 at 0000 hrs Print Email

NEW DELHI, AUGUST 29:Chief Secretaries and Director Generals of Police of 13 Naxalite-affected states are reaching New Delhi tomorrow for a meeting with Union Home Secretary V K Duggal to assess how states have fared in pooling intelligence on Naxal movement and the progress made in security operations in the last three months.

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The meeting is likely to discuss last month’s incident in Chhattisgarh’s Dantewada district where some 800 heavily armed Naxalites got past securitymen and attacked a relief camp, killing at least 31 people.

What’s worrying officials is that the count of securitymen killed by Naxalites this year is higher than the number of personnel killed by militants in the Valley.

From January to July this year, at least 102 securitymen were killed in Naxal attacks while the figure for those killed in the Valley during the same period stood at 85. In 2005, 165 securitymen died in Valley attacks while less than 100 personnel were killed in Naxal attacks.

Officials say it’s becoming increasingly evident that the Naxalites are carrying out more organised, coordinated attacks, even imparting better training to their cadres.

Such is the concern in New Delhi that even the Prime Minister, while addressing Chief Ministers of Naxal-hit states in April, described Left-wing extremism as “the biggest internal security challenge ever faced by the country.’’

Going by official data (see chart), it would appear that Naxal attacks are claiming more lives in Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand than in traditional strongholds Andhra Pradesh and Bihar.

Home Ministry sources estimate that the current strength of the armed Naxal cadre is around 7,200.

raman.kirpal@expressindia.com