Maoist protest week hits life in Chhattisgarh interiors

July 4th, 2011 - 12:57 pm ICT by IANS  

Raipur, July 4 (IANS) A protest week called by the outlawed Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) began Monday in Chhattisgarh, hitting life in the state’s vast forested interiors, police said.

“The protest week has hit life in the interior pockets of Bastar’s 40,000 sq km area where operators have kept buses and smaller passenger vehicles off the road fearing a Maoist attack,” a senior officer at the police headquarters here told IANS.

The official added that hundreds of police and paramilitary troopers have been relocated to strengthen security in the jungle areas vulnerable to attacks.

Reports coming in from the interiors of Dantewada, Bijapur and Narayanpur districts say Maoists have blocked dozens of key forested roads and people remained indoors. The rebels have distributed pamphlets and asked people to join their protest week.

The Maoists have called the protest against the security forces’ entry into their terrain. They have sought withdrawal of troopers from their strongholds in Bastar and the scrapping of an army training camp at Abujhmad forest in Bastar.

About 1,000 army personnel have been in the Bastar region since May 30. However, officers of the army’s Central Command have made it clear that they have stepped into the violence-hit territory of Bastar only “for jungle warfare training, and not for anti-Maoist operations”.

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