Prolonged peace in Chhattisgarh surprises top copsMarch 3rd, 2012 - 5:21 pm ICT by IANS
Raipur, March 3 (IANS) Top police officials in Chhattisgarh, one of India’s worst leftist insurgency-hit states, are happily surprised these days at the prolonged peace period in the state with rebels having failed to carry out any major attack on the police so far this year.
“This is the first prolonged period of peace in the state since 2005 when the Maoist movement broke out in Bastar, resulting in a string of deadly attacks,” a senior police officer posted at the police headquarters here remarked, referring to the failure of the Maoists to carry out attacks on the police in 2012.
The state had witnessed a series of deadly strikes by Maoists on police and civilians in the post-Salwa Judum period including the killing of 76 troopers in a single attack in April 2010 in Dantewada district of the Bastar region.
The government says the Salwa Judum was a “spontaneous outburst of the people of Bastar against Maoists” while human rights organisations term it “a movement funded and armed by the state government to take on Maoists and their sympathisers”.
“It’s an unusual period of peace. We were expecting a decline in Maoist attacks in 2012 as we had infiltrated hundreds of cops in violence-hit Dantewada and Bijapur districts and positioned them at vulnerable areas. A total peace period certainly came as a surprise and we pray the period should go on and on,” the official told IANS requesting anonymity.
A police officer posted in the Sukma district, a Maoist stronghold, said: “In the past five-six months, a serious rift has emerged among Maoists in the Bastar region. Two strong lobbies have arisen — one led by Andhra Pradesh-based Maoists and the other by local Maoists.”
Referring to some unverified reports, he said: “Bastar-based Maoists have refused to blindly act under Andhra Maoists who have been providing leadership to local insurgents who are mostly low-ranked cadres.”
He further said: “There is a general belief in police circles in Bastar that there is something wrong in the outlawed Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) in Bastar. The problems are related to issues like leadership and distribution of funds. It is believed that the outfit’s higher leadership is presently focussing to sort out these issues.”
The 40,000 sq km mineral-rich Bastar region comprises of seven districts of Chhattisgarh.
Chhattisgarh has witnessed the killings of over 2,000 policemen and civilians since the state came into existence in November 2000. It has witnessed just one minor attack by Maoists in 2012 so far. The attack happened Feb 9 in Bastar’s Sukma district in which two state policemen were killed in an ambush.
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- Maoists kill Salwa Judum leader, eight rebels arrested (Lead) - Feb 03, 2011
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- Chhattisgarh Maoists step up attacks to taunt army, say experts - Jun 11, 2011
- 'Disarming SPOs will hit Chhattisgarh's anti-Maoist drive' (Lead) - Jul 07, 2011
- 'Disarming SPOs will hit Chhattisgarh's anti-Maoist drive' - Jul 07, 2011
- Chhattisgarh begins disarming Salwa Judum - Jul 06, 2011
- Maoists open fire at six places in Chhattisgarh - Jul 14, 2010
- Maoists kill Salwa Judum leader - Feb 02, 2011
- Maoists kill civil militia leader - Mar 19, 2012
- Life in Bastar crippled on day two of shutdown - May 19, 2010
Tags: anonymity, bastar, circles, civilians, lobbies, local insurgents, maoist, maoist movement, maoists, outburst, police headquarters, police officer, police officials, prolonged period, rebels, salwa judum, state government, stronghold, unverified reports, vulnerable areas