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Archive for the ‘GREEN HUNT’ Category

Italian Proletarian statement supporting peoples war in India

Posted by ajadhind on April 15, 2011

We, workers, temporary workers, unemployed, salute the struggle of the
Indian masses against the reactionary regime of India and imperialism
that supports it.

In India the masses struggle against the masters, who sack and exploit
them, against high prices, corruption and state terrorism, with huge
demonstrations and strikes, factory occupations, attacks against the
masters.
In India the government decided to sell the natural and human resources
to Western imperialist transnational companies and the owners of the new
monopolies of automobile and steel such as Tata, Essar, Jindal, Mittal,
etc. which draw profits from the uncontrolled exploitation of workers,
often women and children, profits that allow them to become purchasers
and shareholders of the big international monopolies in the sector, in
alliance with the western masters.

Against all this, Indian masses rise up and develop a people’s war led
by the party of the working class of India, the Communist Party of India
Maoist.

Against the rebel masses, the Indian government and imperialists
unleashed a repression, called “Green Hunt”, that is made of massacres,
summary executions, suppression of entire villages and sectors of the
population, to try sweep away what the masters of the world call “the
most serious internal threat and a danger to the international system”,
i.e. the people’s war that aims to establish the people’s power based on
the unity of workers and peasants, to overthrow the imperialists, the
bourgeoisie and the feudal classes.

The struggle for rights of workers and people, the struggle for jobs,
wages, better living conditions, the struggle for freedom and democracy,
the struggle to overthrow the power of the masters and for the power in
the hands of workers and the masses, is an international struggle that
unites us all over the world.

For this, we express the utmost solidarity with Indian masses, the party
leads them, for they reject the attacks of the enemy and advance to victory.

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Posted in GREEN HUNT, ITALY, NAXALISM, solidarity | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Shoot And Shut Up

Posted by ajadhind on September 9, 2010

source – outlook

Slash And Burn Approach

The State is bearing down on dissent by killing even those who want to talk peace

“In the Azad case an FIR has been made out against a man who has been killed by the cops. It’s as if they are judge and jury.” Colin Gonsalves, Advocate, rights activist “Azad was deputed for the peace talks by the Maoists. The home minister’s refusal to recognise his killing shows the State’s intent.” Arundhati Roy, Writer, activist

“We are moving from constitutional democracy to one that is populist. It won’t be surprising if we soon move towards mob rule.” Justice M.N. Venkatachaliah, Former chief justice of India “With Azad’s killing, it seems the State wants Operation Greenhunt to go on, keep blaming the Maoists and snuff out peace talks.” Kavita Srivastav, PUCL activist

A deafening silence from the government has greeted demands for an independent probe into the death of Chemkuri Azad Rajkumar after reports in Outlook and other media raised serious questions about the police encounter. The post-mortem indicated death by a shot fired at point-blank range. When Outlook took the post-mortem report to independent experts, not saying it was of Azad, they concurred with the earlier finding that the wounds and other signs indicated death from a shot fired from “less than 7.5 cm” away.

Azad’s death is not the death of just any Maoist leader. Some may say the state is well within its rights to kill the leader of an armed rebellion, but his death could well perpetuate a conflict without end.

“I don’t think people have fully grasped the true significance of the killing of Azad. There have been killings like this before in Andhra Pradesh. Fake encounter killings have a fixed format. They just change the name of the person killed. So why should it be any more or less significant in Azad’s case?” asks Arundhati Roy. The writer-activist, who has  spent considerable time with the Maoists, reporting on them, says Azad’s death indicates “the government desperately needs this war to clear the land and push ahead with what it wants to”.

“Azad,” says Arundhati, “was the man deputed by the Maoist party to represent them in the proposed peace talks. For the police to kill him in this way, and for the Union home minister to refuse to take cognisance of this extra-judicial killing, tells a great deal about the government’s real attitude towards the peace talks.” The hundreds of MoUs signed by the government with corporates “are waiting to be actualised. The government wants to escalate this war to sort out what it views as a problem. Peace talks would interfere with the momentum and be an unnecessary impediment”.

“We are moving away from a constitutional democracy to a populist democracy, and mob rule is just a step away,” says M.N. Venkatachaliah, former chief justice of India. A constitutional democracy, he says, works under institutional safeguards. It was under Venkatachaliah’s tenure as chairman of the National Human Rights Commission (nhrc) that guidelines on encounter deaths were spelt out and states were expected to follow them. As encounter deaths—more recently that of Azad—continue unabated at the hands of the State, Venkatachaliah is perturbed that the guidelines are not being followed at all. In fact, he says the attitude of the State can be summed up as follows: “Show me the man, and I will show you the law.”

But Union home secretary G.K. Pillai rejects any calls for an independent inquiry into Azad’s death (see following interview). While Pillai supports the state government’s version of the encounter, the state’s dgp, R.R. Girish Kumar, reiterates “whatever allegations made by Maoists or their frontal organisations are baseless”. The Maoists, he says, are taking some point in the post-mortem report and trying to blow it up in a disproportionate manner. “The allegations on the post-mortem report contents are not true,” he says.

But Kavita Srivastav, of the People’s Union of Civil Liberties (PUCL), feels otherwise. “This is called faking the encounter. And there has been no magisterial inquiry till date. With Azad’s killing it appears that the government wants to continue Operation Greenhunt, continue denouncing the Maoists and snuff out any chance of a peace process. The implications of his killing are sinister and dangerous.”

Kavita is clear that as a first step, “the Supreme Court should uphold the Andhra Pradesh High Court order of 2009, which states that every encounter killing must be investigated. That will have far-reaching implications on such killings. Having done that, the apex court should suo motu take note of such killings and order a judicial inquiry. Parliament must also legislate to check such killings by the state.” That may not happen in a hurry.

Arundhati feels that Azad’s killing, along with the others who have been killed so far, is a cause for concern and needs to be challenged. “The way the peace talks are being approached by both sides is amateurish. It’s true that the talks held in Andhra were a debacle. But still, there were important lessons for both sides to be learnt from the debacle. It took more than a year just to finalise a committee of concerned citizens to initiate the talks. Each person on that committee had impeccable credentials and public standing. It wasn’t a question of arbitrarily suggesting names to the media (like the Maoists are doing), nor of arbitrarily selecting a person like Swami Agnivesh (like home minister P. Chidambaram did).”

She also says, “Finally, there are many other groups who have been raising the same issues as the Maoists are—but peacefully and within the ambit of the law. However, the government doesn’t seem to be even pretending to be interested in peace talks with them. That says something about the waging of an armed struggle.”

In Azad’s case, “two FIRs should have been registered by the police. In this case an FIR has been registered against the man who was killed by the police. It’s like the police are the judge and the jury and Azad is the accused person. It’s a travesty of law,” says Supreme Court lawyer and human rights activist Colin Gonsalves. He, too, draws attention to the Andhra Pradesh High Court order of 2009, which clearly stated that an FIR has to be registered in case of an encounter killing and this is the law of the country. But with the Supreme Court granting a stay on that judgement following an appeal by the Andhra Pradesh government and its police, encounter deaths continue to remain outside the pale of an independent inquiry. So, ironically, while it seems to be good in law to gun down a man in cold blood, it conveys the impression that it is  bad in law to order an independent inquiry into such executions.

Posted in ANDHRAPRADESH, Comrades, ENCOUNTER, GREEN HUNT | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Bihar: 7 policemen killed in 14-hr-long maoist encounter

Posted by ajadhind on August 30, 2010

Lakhisarai, Bihar:  A night-long encounter between security forces and Naxals in Poona-Dih village of Bihar’s Lakhisarai district has finally ended after 14 hours. According to reports, seven policemen have been killed in the encounter.

11 security personnel were injured in the attack and 11 others are missing. The injured were taken to the Sadar Hospital in Lakhisarai.

The encounter began on Sunday evening when the Naxals attacked a police party searching the area. The search party included personnel from the Bihar Military Police, State Auxiliary Police (SAP) and the CRPF.

Posted in BIHAR, GREEN HUNT, NAXALISM | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Report on New York & California protests against Operation Green Hunt

Posted by ajadhind on August 26, 2010

Sanhati, a forum for solidarity with peoples’ struggles in India, successfully organized a protest demonstration in front of the Indian Consulate in NYC on August 13 against Operation Green Hunt to coincide with India’s independence day on 15th August . The protest demonstration was endorsed by the Alliance for a Secular and Democratic South Asia and was attended by individuals from Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas representing diverse South Asian and international organizations like SASI (South Asia Solidarity Initiative), ILPS (International League of Peoples Struggles), ISO (International Socialist Organisation), RCP (Revolutionary Communist Party) USA, FRSO (Freedom Road Socialist Organization), WWP (Workers World Party) and others. A legal observer from the National Lawyers Guild (NLG) was also present during the protest.

The demonstration continued from 11 am to 1pm and was marked by chanting of slogans, distributing pamphlets to passers-by, making speeches in support of peoples’ struggles in India, singing songs of resistance and finally submitting a signed petition registering a strong protest against the government’s military offensive in the regions populated by the indigeneous (adivasi) people. The text of the petition is appended below for reference.

Sanhati Collective

———— TEXT OF PETITION ————–

To: Consul General
Consulate General of India
3 East 64th Street
New York, NY 10065

Petition against Operation Green Hunt in India)

Dear Sir/Madam,
We, the undersigned, would like to register our strong protest against the Operation Green Hunt, the Government of India’s (GOI) deliberate move to escalate military intervention against the indigenous people in the forested regions of East-Central India. Such a military campaign already will endanger the lives and livelihoods of millions of the poorest people living in those areas, resulting in massive displacement, destitution and human rights violation of ordinary citizens, especially the indigenous people.
We are acutely aware of the fact that the geographical terrain where the GOI’s military offensive is taking place, is very rich in natural resources like minerals, forest wealth and water, and has been the target of large scale appropriation by several Indian and foreign corporations. The desperate resistance of the local indigenous people against their displacement and dispossession has in many cases prevented the government-backed corporations from making inroads into these areas and has thankfully impeded the setting-up of ecologically disastrous industries. We fear that the government’s on-going military offensive is an attempt to crush such popular resistances in order to facilitate the entry and operation of these corporations and to pave the way for unbridled exploitation of the natural resources and the people of these regions.
We feel that it would deliver a crippling blow to Indian democracy if the government tries to subjugate its own people militarily without addressing their grievances. As has been witnessed in the case of numerous peoples’ struggle around the world, such military campaigns end up in enormous misery for the common people.
Therefore, we demand –
1) An immediate end to the Operation Green Hunt and withdrawal of all armed forces from these regions
2) The GOI should engage with the civil society mediated initiatives for negotiations with representatives of peoples’ movements in order to address the grievances of the common people.
3) All Memoranda of Understanding (MoU-s) signed with different corporations, for the extraction of natural resources from the vast areas of East-Central India, must be revealed and immediately cancelled.
4) All draconian laws like Unlawful Activity (Prevention) Act, Chhattisgarh Special Public Security Act, Armed Forces Special Powers Act should be immediately repealed. Ban on political organizations should be withdrawn and all political prisoners should be released.
5) All state-assisted vigilante groups like the Salwa Judum in Chhattisgarh and Harmad Bahini in West Bengal should be immediately disbanded and the concerned criminals associated with these organizations, including government officials, should be brought to book.

San Francisco, California:

On Friday, August 13, an  action of solidarity with the people in India and  Kashmir–a protest of the Indian government’s “Operation Green Hunt” and the repression of the resistance of Kashmiri people’s struggle–took place at the Indian Consulate in San Francisco.
It was endorsed by the Sanhati Collective, and participants included US and South Asian solidarity activists from the Bay Area and elsewhere. The demonstrators held signs with clear messages:
  • Stop Operation Green Hunt!
  • Stop the War on People in India!
  • Solidarity with the Resistance of Tribal People in India!
  • Support the Just Struggle of the Kashmiri people!
The protestors handed out information about Operation Green Hunt: an Indian government offensive of over 200,000 soldiers directed against the areas populated by tribal peoples in eastern and central India–and why it must be opposed by concerned people around the world.  A number of Indians coming to the Consulate for visas or other business had already  heard about Green Hunt and wanted more information.   This will be the first of many actions and educational events opposing Operation Green Hunt in the Bay Area.

Posted in GREEN HUNT | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Azad killing was murder: Mamata

Posted by ajadhind on August 10, 2010

LALGARH: Trinamool Congress chief and railway minister Mamata Banerjee lived up to her reputation of being a maverick politician at a rally in Lalgarh, West Bengal, on Monday.

Putting herself at odds with her own government’s assessment that Naxalism is India’s biggest internal security threat, Mamata Banerjee on Monday questioned the killing of a Maoist leader and virtually offered them an olive branch. “Give me a date and time for the talks. Let this politics of murder and terror stop. If need be, the joint operations have to stop during the negotiations,” she said.

Referring to the encounter death of Maoist chief spokesman Cherukuri Rajkumar, popularly known as Azad, in Andhra Pradesh on July 2, Mamata described it as ‘khoon (murder)’. “Azad’s killing was not right. Swami Agnivesh has told me they want to talk again.”

Mamata clearly does not mind if her comments raise eyebrows in Delhi. She is ready to bear with the unease — as long as it serves to mobilize people against the ruling CPM in rural West Bengal.

Posted in ANDHRAPRADESH, Comrades, GREEN HUNT, IN NEWS, NAXALISM, WESTBENGAL | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

In Chhattisgarh’s war zone, no value on an Adivasi’s life

Posted by ajadhind on August 10, 2010

Aman Sethi, hindu

After ‘encounter,’ police try to buy villagers’ silence with Rs. 3,100 and packets of biscuits, chivda

The monsoon skies have cleared over this village in Dantewada district, but a cloud of doubt still lingers over the site of last week’s encounter between the police and suspected cadres of the CPI (Maoist).

On August 4, according to the official version, the Koya commandos spent 18 hours combing through the rain-soaked forests near Kutrem, during which they broke through a Maoist ambush, engaged in a fierce gun battle lasting several hours and ultimately recovered the body of a uniformed Maoist fighter, a 12 bore shotgun and two improvised explosive devices.

The Koya commandos are a specialised police team largely comprising surrendered Maoists or Adivasis whose families have been targets of Maoist violence.

“We were ambushed deep in the jungle and fought the Maoists for about four hours,” said a policeman who was part of the operation, “We fired hundreds of rounds of ammunition … and killed six Maoists, but could recover only one body.” The corpse was identified as Kunjami Joga, a 23-year-old resident of Kutrem.

At Kutrem, however, the villagers have a very different account of the circumstances that led to Joga’s death.

About 11.30 a.m. on August 4, the villagers say, a party of the Koya commandos cordoned off Kutrem and took positions outside several houses in its Kotwalpara neighbourhood. Kunjam Hidme, 40, sat quietly in her house when she suddenly heard a policeman scream, “Hold your fire, don’t shoot!” followed by a burst of automatic fire.

“Kunjami Joga was stepping out of his sister, Karti Budri’s house, when he was shot,” said Hidme. He was unarmed, and was wearing a blue shirt. “I could hear him shouting ‘Ma, Ma’ as he lay on the path.” Hidme says the commandos hurriedly dumped the body on a wooden cot they took from one of the houses and left the village soon after.

On August 5, the Chhattisgarh police conducted post-mortem, initiated a magisterial inquiry and handed over the body to Joga’s parents. “When I got back his body, Joga was naked except for his underclothes,” said Joga’s father, Kunjami Lakhma, “He had a bullet here [pointing to the small of the back near the kidneys] and knife marks on his chest.” As per custom, the body was cremated the same day.

On August 7, the villagers say, the Koya commandos visited Kutrem again, this time with a carton of biscuits and sachets of Haldiram’s mixture. “The force called a public meeting outside the primary school,” said Kunjami Aiyte, Joga’s aunt, “They said, ‘If the press comes, tell them that Joga was killed in the forest, not in the village’.” Aiyte says the police then gave Rs. 1,100 to the gathered villagers for “food and alcohol.” The biscuits and mixture were distributed among the children.

“The Koyas gave me Rs. 2,000 and told me to keep quiet about Joga’s death,” said Kunjami Lakhma when asked whether he had been given any compensation.

Senior police officers expressed surprise when The Hindu questioned them about the money paid to Kunjami Lakhma. Sources refused to come on record, citing the sensitive nature of the allegations and the ongoing magisterial inquiry.

“No one has authorised this [payment],” said a senior policeman speaking on background.

“It is hard to keep control of the Koyas once they are sent out on operation,” continued the source, “The wireless set is our only link to the patrolling companies.” On the day of the encounter, this link was severed by heavy rain and inclement weather. Police officers said the Koyas were not supposed to go to Kutrem at all.

“We were just supposed to go up till Hiroli,” admitted a policeman involved in the operation, “But at Hiroli we received information that a Maoist company was moving between Gumiapal and Kutrem village.” The patrolling party tried to radio headquarters for permission to pursue the Maoists; when the wireless set stopped working, the patrolling party chose to press on moving to Kutrem without waiting for permission.

Posted in CHHATISGARH, GREEN HUNT, NAXALISM | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Naxal ambush in Dantewada; 3 killed, 75 missing

Posted by ajadhind on August 4, 2010

source -rediff

Three Chhattisgarh Police personnel have been killed and 75 are missing after Maoists ambushed a combined search party of the state police’s Special Task force, Dantewada district police and Koya commandos on Tuesday afternoon.

Around 200 Maoists cornered the personnel inside Gumiapal in Dantewada district while they were returning to the base camp after a routine search operation in the forest area, 17 kilometres from the Bailadila mining area.

Sources in the state police, however, said as many as 25 policemen could have been killed.

The fierce exchange of fire, which started around noon, is continuing till reports last came in.

“A massive encounter is going on. A team of police personnel had gone into the area in pursuit of a Naxal commander and his associates,” Chhattisgarh police chief Vishwaranjan said.

Reinforcements have been sent to the encounter spot, sources said, but heavy rains have hampered their progress.

On April 6, 75 CRPF personnel and a state policemen were killed in Dantewada after over 100 Naxals ambushed the patrol party and looted weapons.

In another incident on June 29, a large number of heavily-armed Maoists, perched on a hilltop, had opened fire with automatic weapons on a 63-member security contingent which was returning on foot from road opening duty, killing 26 CRPF personnel in Narayanpur district. The dead included a CRPF Assistant Commandant Jatin Gulati.

Posted in CHHATISGARH, GREEN HUNT, NAXALISM | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

INTERNATIONAL CALL: Support people’s war in India!

Posted by ajadhind on July 28, 2010

In India an impetuous people’s war against the Indian bourgeoisie and the imperialism is developing and spreading more and more in nearly one third of the districts of the country. It is not simply a guerilla waged by few thousands of fighters, coming from the castes and tribal areas of the country. It is a real people’s war, led by the Party of the proletariat of India, the Communist Party of India (Maoist), in which are involved – or is supported by – millions of poor peasants, women, “untouchables, ” fighting to free themselves and it has already took big areas throughout a dozen of states of the Indian Federation.

The people’s war began where the root of the riot, the poverty, the tribal and capitalistic exploitation, the caste oppression, the plundering of the natural resources were deeper and therefore the contradictions brought by the Indian capitalism ruled by the imperialism were sharper. Today this people’s war is winning masses of young people, students, democratic and revolutionary intellectuals also in the cities and gains attention and support over the world.

Against the people’s war, the Indian State, supported by the imperialists, launched a giant repressive offensive called “Green Hunt,” a real manhunt that hits the poor masses in India as animals to exterminate. The Indian State launched an internal military offensive against the people, waged by hi-tech-armed troops, police units and paramilitary militias, in order to spread terror and genocide in the villages, with raids, crop destroying, massive rapes and killings, selective murders, mass detentions and disappearing – like the recent genocide offensive occurred in Sri Lanka against the Tamil people and liberation movement.

All this with the illusion to drown in blood the struggle of the people for their liberation, with the silent/consent of the imperialist governments of US, Europe, Russia, and their mass-media. The crimes of the Indian State found the internal opposition of a wide front of intellectuals – including the prominent representative of the world anti-globalization movement, the writer Arundhati Roy. And in all countries of the world political activists denounced those crimes and mobilized to stop “Green Hunt.”

A world campaign of information and solidarity has been launched by ICAWPI (International Campaign Against War on the People in India). But we need more than the condemnation of the crimes of the counter-revolution in India. The masses led by the Communist Party of India (Maoist) are writing a historical chapter of the class clash in the world between, on one side, the imperialism and the reactionary bourgeoisies and, on the other side, the proletariat and the people of the world. The development of the people’s war in India is a new proof that the revolution is the main tendency in the world today.

It shows again that Maoism, the Marxism-Leninism of our era, is the command and guide of the world revolution against the imperialism in crisis.

The vanguard proletarians must understand that the advance of the people’s war in India seriously questions the strength balance, not only in the South-Asian region but also on a world scale. That is why we, Maoist and revolutionary parties and organizations, launch a big campaign of support and call to form an International Committee of Support to organize conferences, meetings, demonstrations in various countries, particularly in the heart of the imperialist beast.

With people’s war in India towards the victory!

Maoist Communist Party – France
Maoist Communist Party – Italy
Maoist Communist Party – Turkey/North Kurdistan
Revolutionary Communist Party – Canada
Communist Party of India (ML) Naxalbari

Posted in CANADA, FRANCE, GREEN HUNT, ITALY, NAXALISM, solidarity, TURKEY | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

Killing Azad: Silencing the Voice of Revolution

Posted by ajadhind on July 26, 2010

By

N Venugopal

In a deliberate attempt to suppress the most powerful and articulate voice of Indian revolutionary movement, the state has indulged in cold-blooded, brutal assassination of Cherukuri Rajkumar, popularly known as Azad, spokesperson of the Communist Party of India (Maoist), along with freelance journalist Hemchandra Pandey on July 2. Azad was supposed to meet a courier at Sitabardi in Nagpur , Maharashtra at 11 am on July 1, to go to Dandakaranya forest from there. The courier returned back to the forest after missing him at the appointed time and place. Thus Azad might have met Pandey before that and might have been picked up either before they reached the place or at the place before the courier reached there. Dead bodies of both of them were shown on a hillock in the forest between Jogapur and Sarkepalli villages in Adilabad district of Andhra Pradesh, about 250 kms from Nagpur , with a story of an encounter that took place in the early hours of July 2. Since the “encounter” stories are very common and Azad is a very important functionary in the Maoist movement, this killing raises several questions that remain unanswered.

Andhra Pradesh is a state with about a dozen television news channels and one gets information flashes within minutes of happening. Around 9 in the morning on July 2 the channels started flashing that there was an “encounter” in which two Maoists were killed. Slowly the news developed to identify the dead bodies of two “top leaders” in the beginning and a “top leader” (“because there was one AK-47”) and his courier later. Within the next few hours it was speculated that the deceased were Cherukuri Rajkumar alias Azad and Pulluri Prasada Rao alias Chandranna, secretary of North Telangana Special Zonal Committee. By afternoon Gudsa Usendi, spokesperson of Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee came online and told the channels that the second person might be Sahadev, an adivasi courier sent to fetch Azad, after an appointment in Nagpur . By the next day Usendi came again online and told that Sahadev returned back safely after not finding Azad at the rendezvous. Almost at the same time, friends of Hemchandra Pandey recognized the picture of his dead body that appeared in New Delhi edition of Telugu daily Eenadu and Pandey’s wife Babita announced that at a press conference in Delhi . Pandey was not identified for the first two days and passed off as a Maoist and once he was identified, police started denying that he was a journalist, implying that killing a Maoist cannot be an issue.

The official version of the incident goes like this: On the night of July 1 police got information that there was some movement of Maoists in Maharashtra – Andhra Pradesh border forests for the last 10-15 days and a combing party consisting of police from both the states went in search of them. Around 10.30 in the night the police party identified the Maoists and asked them to surrender, but the intransigent Maoists, numbering around 20, started firing at them. In order to defend themselves the police returned the fire and the exchange of fire continued till 2.30 in the morning. The police party could not search the area due to pitch darkness and came back next morning to find out two unidentified dead bodies, along with an AK-47, a 9 mm pistol, two kit bags and revolutionary literature.

However, newspaper readers in Andhra Pradesh are sick of this version that they have been reading the same sentences over and over again for the last forty years with changes in proper nouns alone. That nobody believed the version handed out by police and accepted Usendi’s statement was a commentary on the credibility of state machinery.

There are a number of reasons even usual believers in police stories could not trust this time round: Azad is known for his vigilant and alert attitude so much that police do not even have his recent photograph and content with a 30-year old picture of him. Given the importance of Azad as a member of politbureau and central committee, he would not be alone and would be protected by a well-guarded team if he were in forests. He could have been unarmed and single only if he were in an urban area. Newspersons who visited the site where dead bodies were shown also said that it was difficult terrain and would have been impossible for police coming out without a bruise, if it were a real exchange of fire. More over, there were no tell-tale signs of exchange of fire at the place except two bullets and the nearby villagers did not hear any sounds of gun fire, even as police claim that cross firing lasted for four hours.

The ruling class’ wrath against Rajkumar was so much that even his dead body was not allowed to be accorded due honour. Rajkumar’s mother, an ailing 75-year old Cherukuri Karuna, pleaded with the High Court to direct the government to bring the body from the remote Jogapur forest to Hyderabad , instead of a nearby hospital that does not have necessary equipment to protect the body from decomposition. She told the court that her age and health would not permit her to go all the way to Adilabad district and hence her request should be considered sympathetically. The court directed the police to postpone the post-mortem till the mother sees the dead body of her son, as if it was benevolently granting permission to a mother to see her son’s dead body. Even at the ill-equipped hospital at Mancherial, where hundreds of people gathered to pay their last respects to Azad, heavy police force was deployed and people were dispersed with lathicharge. Finally the police allowed mother and brothers only inside the hospital.

Azad is a very popular leader of the CPI (Maoist) and in his capacity as spokesperson of the central committee of the party he interacted with a number of media organisations, including EPW, as well as with important members of civil society during the lat couple of years. People who know Azad for a long time describe him as the personification of commitment, experience and expertise.

Cherukuri Rajkumar was born into a middle class family of Krishna district in May 1954. His father, an ex-service man, shifted to Hyderabad to run a small restaurant to raise a family of four sons and a daughter, Rajkumar being the second son. Rajkumar had his primary education in Hyderabad and secondary education at Sainik School , Korukonda in Vizianagaram district. He did his graduation in chemical engineering at Regional Engineering College (REC), Warangal and post graduation in marine engineering at Andhra University , Visakhapatnam . He was a brilliant student throughout and his mother remembers: “He suffered from eyesight problem when he was in class X and had to begin using contact lenses. Initially he could not adjust to the lenses and arranged a friend to read out the lessons to him. By just listening, he secured distinction in seven subjects that year.” Even when he was an activist, his teachers and friends say, he was a meritorious student as well as a prize winner in elocution and essay writing contests.

Srikakulam struggle broke out when Rajkumar was in high school and several of his family members were influenced by the struggle. His maternal grandfather’s family settled in Adilabad district and some of them were part of peasant struggles in that area along with Kondapalli Seetaramaiah, one of the founders of the Naxalite movement in Andhra Pradesh. Rajkumar used to spend his summer vacation in that area and was influenced by the revolutionary environment around.

By the time he joined REC in 1972, it was a hot bed of revolutionary student movement, inspired by peasant movements in Warangal district, and being a very sensitive and sharp person, he became a part of that fervour. He was two years junior to and follower of Surapaneni Janardhan, a very effective radical student leader. Not only the impact of Janardhan, but also the peasant and working class movements in and around Warangal in the pre-Emergency days made a lasting impression on Rajkumar. Students of REC were in the forefront in forming Andhra Pradesh Radical Students Union (RSU) at state level in October 1974 and Rajkumar was part of that group. While the RSU held its first conference in February 1975 in Hyderabad , it had to undergo severe repression within three months, with the imposition of Emergency. Several radical students went underground to avoid arrest as well as to organise peasants. Rajkumar was also arrested under the MISA and let off after a couple of months. Janardhan, along with three other student activists, were killed in a fake encounter in July 1975 in Giraipalli forest in Medak district.

Giraipalli killing, along with several other killings, created furore in post-Emergency period. Janardhan, like Rajan, another REC student from Calicut , became a symbol of democratic rights movement then. Jayaprakash Narayan set up a people’s fact finding committee under the leadership of V M Tarkunde to enquire the fake encounters in Andhra Pradesh. It was Rajkumar who helped Tarkunde Committee in gathering the necessary information and protecting the witnesses in Giraipalli forest and surrounding villages. Tarkunde Committee’s report led to the constitution of Justice V Bhargava Commission which held its enquiry during 1977-78. It was again Rajkumar who helped the defence team led by K G Kannabiran in arguing the case before the commission. K G Kannabiran fondly remembered the help and efficient assistance rendered by Rajkumar during those days, in his autobiography 24 Gantalu, published in 2009.

Radical Students Union was revived after Emergency and held its second conference in Warangal in February 1978 and Rajkumar, by that time doing his M Tech in Visakhapatnam , became its state president. It was at this conference, RSU gave the famous call of “Go to Villages” to students. These village campaigns of students brought out a sea change in the outlook of participating students as well as spreading the revolutionary message at the grassroots. The campaign was a prelude to Karminagar – Adilabad peasant struggles and in turn RSU gained strength through the peasant movement.  The ‘Go to Villages’ campaigns directly led to the formation of Radical Youth League in May 1978 and Raithucooli Sangham in 1980. During these historic years, Rajkumar was the president of RSU. He was re-elected twice at the third conference in Anantapur in February 1979 and fourth conference in Guntur in February 1981. However, by the time of Guntur conference he was being hunted by police and he could not even attend the public proceedings.

In the meanwhile, both as the president of RSU and as a student of M Tech at Andhra University he led a number of struggles in Visakhapatnam in particular and throughout the state in general. Struggle against private local transport system in Visakhapatnam , under his leadership, resulted in nationalisation of city buses. He was a powerful public speaker and addressed hundreds of meetings of students and others till 1981. All these activities made him a dangerous person in the eyes of state and he was implicated in a number of cases, beginning from his arrest under the MISA in 1975 till arrest in a case of exceeding permitted time of a public meeting in Narsapur and burning national flag in Visakhapatnam .

During the second half of 1980 itself he chose to become whole timer and began his underground life and there was no looking back. However, even working clandestinely he never lost touch with people and his activity spread far and wide. In August 1981, RSU organised an all India seminar on the nationality question in India in Madras . Rajkumar wrote an introductory pamphlet as well as a paper to be presented at the seminar on behalf of APRSU. This seminar connected various students’ organisations of different nationality struggles as well as radical democratic movements. As a follow up of the seminar, Revolutionary Students’ Organisations Co-ordination Committee (RSOCC) was formed and culminating four years of deliberations, All India Revolutionary Students’ Federation (AIRSF) held its first conference in Hyderabad in 1985. Rajkumar was one of the major forces that coordinated all these efforts.

For the next 25 years, he worked in different areas like Karnataka, Tamilnadu, Kerala, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Dandakaranya, giving theoretical, political and organisational inputs to struggles in all these places. He guided party units and committees in all these states as well as South-western Regional Bureau. He is known to have acquired fluency in at least six languages during this time. It is learnt that he used different names at different points of time for the sake of camouflage or depending on the nature of the job. He was known as Uday, Madhu, Janardhan, Prakash, and Gangadhar at different points of time. Though he was part of a collective decision-making body of the party, his personal contribution in terms of vision, expertise in several fields and a sharp insight into different developing themes helped the movement quite a bit. He was a voracious reader and a prolific writer. Given the nature of his clandestine activity he wrote under different pseudonyms, and more often credited his writings to collective, but one could easily identify his style in numerous writings in Voice of the Vanguard, People’s March, People’s Truth, Maoist Information Bulletin, etc. His hand could be identified in various documents of the party also. It is reported that he began thinking of international activity and solidarity about 15 years ago, demonstrating that he looked much ahead. There is an unconfirmed report that he participated in an international conclave of Maoist parties held in Brazil a few years ago. It is also reported that he was instrumental in setting up Co-ordination Committee of Maoist Parties in South Asia (CCOMPOSA) and addressed its meetings several times.

A couple of instances of his theoretical, political and organisational guidance and coordination are worth mentioning:

When K Balagopal raised some fundamental questions on the relevance of Marxism as an instrument of social transformation, even as accepting it as an efficient tool of analysis, in 1993, a number of revolutionary sympathisers felt disillusioned and a theoretical rebuttal was expected from the party. It was Rajkumar who wrote a critical essay in 1995 and another in 2001 answering all the philosophical questions of Balagopal. Despite being so critical on the questions of perspective, Azad paid rich tributes to Balagopal after the latter’s demise. The condolence statement stands as a model in recording both positive and negative aspects – respecting the significance of Balagopal’s contributions to people’s movements as well as mentioning post-modernist tendencies in him.

Consistently exploring the importance of the nationality question in India , he was again instrumental in holding an international seminar on nationality question, under the auspices of All India People’s Resistance Forum (AIPRF) in February 1996. Participated by scholars like William Hinton, Ngugi wa Thiongo, Luis Jalandoni, Raymond Lotta, Jalil Andrabi, Manoranjan Mohanty, this seminar had more than 30 papers on various nationality movements in India and across the globe. The seminar led to the formation of the Committee for Co-ordination of Nationalities and Democratic Movements (CCNDM), an important milestone in the expansion of revolutionary people’s movement in the country.

In 2002, the government of Andhra Pradesh accepted the proposal of some well-meaning intellectuals and Committee of Concerned Citizens (CCC) to hold talks with the then CPI (ML) Peoples War to bring about peace. It was Rajkumar who guided the efforts of peace negotiations on the part of the revolutionary party and he wrote a number of statements, gave interviews to newspapers clarifying the party’s position. The talks could not go ahead at that time, except a preliminary round between the emissaries proposed by the party and the government representatives.

Rajkumar was also part of the collective that guided Mumbai Resistance 2004, an event organised parallel to World Social Forum, which attracted quite a few revolutionary organisations from various countries towards the people’s movements in India under the leadership of the CPI (ML) Peoples War.

Again in 2004, in Andhra Pradesh the Congress party made an election promise to hold talks with the revolutionary parties and came to power. This time round the talks moved a little forward till the first round of negotiations between the representatives of CPI (Maoist) and CPI (ML) Janasakthi on one hand and the representatives of the government on the other. Beginning in May 2004 when Congress acquired power till January 2005, when the party withdrew from the process after gross violations of cease-fire agreement and spate of encounters on the part of the government, it was again Rajkumar who guided and prepared a lot of statements and documents for the talks. In fact, the party was so well prepared for the effort that it wrote the agenda, it prepared background papers on the three issues that were discussed and it circulated a number of documents and met with different sections of people to share the party’s point of view, while the government, with its mammoth machinery and all resources at its disposal, could not even prepare a single sheet of information throughout and the government representative did not do any home work.

Then again beginning with 2007 when the Prime Minister described the Maoist movement as the biggest internal threat, Rajkumar consistently exposed the real intentions of mining mafia behind the onslaught, including Operation Greenhunt. Through various writings and interviews in several media, he elaborated the party’s positions on various issues including the peace process. Indeed, a number of statements given by him, an 18-page interview along with audio sent to press in October 2009, his 12,262-word interview given to the Hindu in April 2010 and his letter of May 31, 2010 in response to Home Minister P Chidambaram’s letter of May 10 to Swami Agnivesh are crystal clear expositions of what the CPI (Maoist) thinks and does right now.

Azad’s killing is an integral part of the Operation Greenhunt and by killing him the government wanted to scuttle the voice of resistance and revolution. The Operation Greenhunt is a mission of the Indian ruling classes to surrender rich resources of Indian people to MNCs and their Indian junior partners. Rajkumar was also a great resource of Indian people and the ruling classes have eliminated this resource since he was a powerful expression among those obstructing the outright plunder of people’s natural resources.

nvenugopal61@ gmail.com

N Venugopal is Editor, Veekshanam, Telugu monthly journal of political economy and society.

Posted in ANDHRAPRADESH, Comrades, GREEN HUNT, MADHYAPRADESH, NAXALISM, ORISSA | Leave a Comment »

6 Naxals killed in an encounter in West Bengal

Posted by ajadhind on July 26, 2010

Six Naxals, including a woman cadre, were killed after night long encounter between the security forces and the Naxals near the Motera jungle in West Bengal.

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Reportedly, a CRPF commando was also killed in the encounter.

The CRPF sources said, “Acting on a specific intelligence, a joint-team of the CRPF and special anti-Naxal force SAF went into the operation in the dense forests under Golatore police station last night.”

Maoists were unaware of the attack
As the Maoists had not anticipated this move, they were surprised by the attack by the security forces.

The encounter ended in the wee hours of today morning. Twelve weapons, including SLRs and INSAS rifles, were recovered from the spot.

As per the reports from the officials, one of the persons killed was Siddhu Soren.

Siddhu Soren was the top Naxal commander in the state. He was also the secretary of the Maoist based People’s Committee against Police Atrocities (PCPA).

Another encounter in Jharkhand
Besides an encounter in West Bengal, a 20-hour long gunfight also took place in Jharkhand between the Naxals and security forces, which resulted in the destruction of a Maoist camp.

The police officials had suspected the presence of Pahan, well-known as Veerappan of Karnataka, along with 45 other Maoists in Jaranburu hill in the area bordering Khuti and Seraikela districts.

Reportedly, the gun battle started on Sunday in areas bordering Khuti, Seraikela and Kharsawa districts and continued overnight.

Nearly, 900 security personnel including CRPF and STF were involved in the operation.

Posted in Comrades, GREEN HUNT, NAXALISM | 1 Comment »

 
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