Maoist threat emerging in Assam: Pillai

February 13th, 2012 - 6:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Guwahati, Feb 13 (IANS) The Maoists are beginning to threaten Assam, former central home secretary G.K. Pillai said here Monday.

“The strategy of the Maoists is to fish in troubled waters and exploit any grievances or even perceived grievances. This has to be tackled politically at the grassroots level and not allowed to convert itself into an armed movement,” said Pillai.

He was speaking at a seminar on ‘Sustaining peace in Northeast India: Changing dimensions’, organised by the Centre for Development and Peace Studies.

Pillai urged political parties in Assam and NGOs to appreciate what the Maoists were planning to do and counter their propaganda at the grassroots level.

Workers of political parties would have to counter the Maoist propaganda at the village level and educate people on the ill-effects of violence, he said.

“The Maoists are fascist in character and have no faith in parliamentary democracy. They believe in an armed movement to capture political power. The subtle campaign of the Maoists to portray themselves as the champions of the underdogs and protectors of the deprived is but a part of their larger campaign to seize political power through armed struggle,” he said.

Pillai urged the Assam government to nip Maoism in the bud by learning from the experiences of Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Odisha.

Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, who was also present on the occasion, admitted the problem of the rebels but said a Maoist revolution would not be successful in the state.

“In states like Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, the farmers are exploited a lot. So there is a grievance among them and Naxalism is growing in those states,” said Gogoi, adding that the harassment of farmers was far less in Assam.

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