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Archive for March 3rd, 2010

Indian Intellectuals, Rights Activists Appeal to Government to Reciprocate Maoist Peace Offer

Posted by Ka Frank on March 3, 2010

Heeding to the appeal of elusive Maoist leader Kishenji to step in, the intellectuals said they welcomed the announcement by the Maoists to observe a ceasefire and their readiness to enter into talks with the Government.  “The Government should halt Operation Green Hunt immediately and respond to the offer made by Maoists,” Justice Sachar said.

In a possible mediation effort, the intellectuals said they have sent a letter to UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi pointing out the need for the Government to reciprocate and would be writing to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in a day or two placing their views on the issue and seeking an appointment with him.

Roy told The Indian Express that the effort should be seen as an attempt “to create an atmosphere” for possible talks and cessation of hostilities. Asked about Kishenji’s appeal to intellectuals and civil rights groups to mediate, she said the appeal was general, but “what we are trying to do is to create an atmosphere in which something can happen”.

G N Saibaba, one of the signatories of the letter, however told The Indian Express that the intellectuals were responding to the statement of Kishenji. “We are trying to talk to the Government. We will write a letter to the Prime Minister in which we will express our views. We are also trying to seek an appointment with him,” he said.

Saibaba, a professor of the Delhi University, is one of the civil rights activists whose name figure as Naxalite sympathisers in the chargesheet filed by the Delhi Police against arrested Maoist leader Kobad Ghandy. He had earlier termed it as an attempt to silence voices of dissent in a democracy.

Kishenji had on February 22 made a conditional ceasefire offer asking the government to halt the offensive against Maoists for 72 days. Responding to the offer, Home Minister P Chidambaram had made it clear that the government will not accept any pre-conditions for talks.

Calling themselves the “concerned citizens”, the group which include among others Prashant Bhushan and S A R Geelani asked the government to halt all paramilitary armed offensive operations immediately. “We are of the view that the Central government, and not the state governments, should be the authority to conduct talks as the problem covers various states,” they said.

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Gujurat: Maoists Call on Satipati Youth to Join Armed Struggle

Posted by Ka Frank on March 3, 2010

This article appeared in the Indian Express on February 28, 2010.

Tribal community comes under police watch

Surat: Satipati community members say all natural resources in the region were ‘gifted’ to them by Queen Victoria before Independence.  After Gujarat Police filed a comprehensive FIR against banned CPI (Maoist) for its alleged role in spreading its network in tribal region in South Gujarat, the Satipati community of the region has come under the police scrutiny. The move comes after certain pamphlets were distributed at a function held recently in Tapi district by an organisation — Maowadi Satipati Sangathan — calling upon youths to fight for their rights.

Spread in tribal region of South Gujarat, the community is known to have its own ruler and disregard the Indian Constitution or even the govt structures. The community members who lead a distinct lifestyle claim that the forests, ponds, rivers and their homes were gifted by the Queen Victoria to their leader – Kunwar Keshri Singh of Katasva village before the Independenc.

Sources said there are over 60,000 people in Tapi and Valsad districts who follow Satipati Sangathan. A private meet was organised under Satipati banner for the community members at Rohial Talat village in Kaprada taluka of Valsad district from February 16 to 18. Over 2,500 people from Tapi and Valsad districts participated in the function and pamphlets were distributed over there. Read the rest of this entry »

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