Revolution in South Asia

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Maoists Regroup in Andhra Pradesh, Press for Telangana State

Posted by Ka Frank on December 30, 2009

This article was published in the Hindustan Times, December 27, 2009

Maoists eye Telangana comeback

The political turmoil in Andhra Pradesh over Telangana has rekindled Maoists’ hopes for a comeback in a state that was once their stronghold.  As a first step, Communist Party of India (Maoist) leaders are planning to initiate “peoples’ committees” to participate in democratic movements demanding a separate Telangana state.

Telangana is the traditional Naxalite heartland of Andhra Pradesh. But a savage counter-attack by the Greyhounds, a specialised anti-Naxal security force, in 2005 has weakened their dominance in this region.

“People want Telangana and we support it fully. Our cadres will participate in joint democratic movements along with other political parties,” said Koteshwar Rao alias Kishenji, a CPI(Maoist) politburo member, last seen publicly at a rally in the Telangana region in 1978. He claimed to have spoken to some pro-Telangana politicians over telephone over the last couple of days but declined to reveal their identities.

“As the Maoists are planning to infiltrate the democratic mass movements, it has become necessary for us to keep vigil on activists with whom the Maoists may home some links,” a a senior intelligence officer told Hindustan Times on conditions of anonymity.

Four of the 13-member CPI (Maoist) politburo formed in 2007 are from Karimnagar district, a part of the proposed Telangana region. They are Ganapati (general secretary), Koteshwar Rao, Vasav Rao (alias Vasav Raj) and Cherkuri Rajakumar.

“We discussed formulating a common strategy for the movement,” said Kishenji, but refused to divulge further details. “We made a strategic retreat in Andhra but it doesn’t mean we have no presence there. Though we lost several leaders our support-base has remained intact,” he added..

The Maoists have successfully employed the strategy Kishenji was hinting at. In West Bengal’s Lalgarh, the Maoists engineered the formation of the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities in November 2008 and then took its reins in their hands. The Maoists dominate three districts in the state – West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia.

Maoists regrouping in Andhra Pradesh

Times of India, October 25, 2009

Hyderabad: An aggressive push by the government post 2004 might have blunted Maoist insurgency, but the rebels are suspected to be regrouping in a big way raising the sceptre of fresh violence in Andhra Pradesh. If documents claimed to have been recovered by intelligence agencies are to be believed, the top Maoist leadership is concentrating on reviving the movement particularly in North Telangana.

Intelligence sources claim that there is increased movement in areas where the guerrillas have sought refuge along the North Telangana forest border with Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. Highly-placed sources told TOI that the Maoist party is planning to restore its glory in North Telangana by launching agitations against open cast mines of Singareni Collieries, an issue which is likely to have local support. Towards this end, the extremist party has reactivated its frontal organisation, Singareni Karmika Samakya (Sikasa), which has a strong presence among the coal miners.

“The strategy is to keep one arm of movement above the ground and another below the ground,” analysts said. The recent spurt in Maoist attacks in Karimnagar, Adilabad and Warangal districts is an indication that they are on their comeback trail. Sources said the rebels could resort to ambushes and surprise attacks in the coming days what with top Maoist Mupalla Lakshmana Rao alias Ganapathi talking about revival of the movement in North Telangana.

In fact, party central committee leader Mallojula Koteshwar Rao alias Kishanji recently made it clear that his party would fight against Singareni Collieries management’s decision to dig open cast mines. Sikasa organising secretary Janjipalli Sridhar even issued a statement in Mancherial warning Congress and TDP leaders of dire consequences for supporting SCCL. “The Maoists have changed their strategies. The open cast mining issue has come in handy for them to attract coal miners to their fold,” a police official said.

The Maoists believe that the events of the last few years which saw them sucrrying out of the state, was a temporary setback for them. “Their strategy is simple — develop more bases in the surrounding regions of North Telangana before hitting back strongly,” he said. Analysts said Maoists could form more guerrilla and Red resistance zones to take on Greyhounds, the elite commando force.

Though there are about 450 extremists in the state, some 150 Maoists led by top leader Pulluri Prasada Rao alias Chandranna are active in North Telangana districts. “Every time the authorities felt Maoists were losing ground, the rebels bounced back by resorting to surprise attacks,” an analyst said. Ever since the peace talks broke down in early 2005, the Maoist party had lost over 350 cadre, including top leaders.

“Many leaders have shifted base to Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Orissa. They would of course try to make a comeback but we cannot lower our guard,” a top IPS officer involved in anti-naxal operations said. But what is bothering the police top brass is the reported nexus between the Maoists and Tamil Tigers, who are experts in triggering explosives.

Naxals press for ‘armed struggle’ for separate Telangana state

Breaking News Online, December 27, 2009

Hyderabad: Breaking News! The worst fears of the Centre and Andhra Pradesh has come true, as Maoists joined the Telangana debate. The Naxalites have called in for a militant mass struggle to achieve a separate Telangana state.

Azad, the spokesperson of the Central Committee of the outlawed CPI (Maoist), issued a statement, saying a separate state of Telangana is an “inalienable right” of the four crore people of the region.

Azad also called for a united militant mass struggle against the Congress regime and the “betrayers” in various political parties. He did not spare any party, and lashed out at the Congress, BJP, TDP, CPI and CPI (M), accusing him playing vote bank politics over Telangana issue.  The Maoist leader did not spare KCR’s Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS), saying it wasted over five years, begging Congress President Sonia Gandhi.

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