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CPI (Maoist) appeals to SPOs in the wake of July 4 SC judgement

Posted by ajadhind on August 17, 2011

COMMUNIST PARTY OF INDIA (MAOIST)
DANDAKARANYA SPECIAL ZONAL COMMITTEE
Press Release

July 7, 2011
An Appeal from Maoists to SPOs (Special Police Officers)
Defeat the ploys of the government to divide us and rule!
Stop fighting for the exploiters and oppressors
and come back to your villages!!

The Supreme Court delivered a judgment on the petition filed by social activist Nandini Sundar, historian Ramchandra Guha and ex-bureaucrat E.A.S. Sharma on July 4, 2011 and ordered the Chhattisgarh government that appointment of Adivasis as SPOs on the pretext of fighting Maoists and arming them with guns should be stopped. The SC opined that the very appointment of SPOs is unconstitutional. Previously too it had commented several times in the negative about Salwa Judum, SPO and Koya commandos.
In fact, since the launch of the fascist repressive campaign in the name of Salwa Judum (SJ) by the central and state governments in a planned manner, the process of appointing Adivasi youth as SPOs began. Since then in a series of repressive campaigns in the name of SJ and later in the name of Operation Green Hunt (OGH) nearly 700 villages were destroyed. Each village was burnt down in phases. More than 1200 people were killed. Hundreds of women were gang raped. Many of them were murdered too. Granaries were razed to ground. Properties were looted. Hens, pigs and goats were whisked away. In all these terrorizing acts SPOs recruited from Adivasis were pushed to the forefront. It was the SPOs that were pushed to the forefront to act as guides to the paramilitary forces and to identify the people and their houses when they attack villages. Later due to the decision taken to recruit SPOs on a huge scale their numbers increased to nearly 5,000. Some selected SPOs were given training by Greyhounds and Rashtriya Rifles of Indian Army and a new force called Koya commando was constituted. As it was not possible to suppress the Maoist movement even with the repressive methods employed by all these types of armed forces, the state has now deployed the Army as its last resort. Though this deployment is done in the name of `training’ at present, in fact the process of directly using the Army in the `War on People’ has started.
The ruling classes have launched this unjust war against the people with the evil design of turning the whole of Dandakaranya which is home to immense natural resources into the grazing field for MNC and big bourgeoisie corporate loot. They took up a policy of displacing people from the villages and forests on a huge scale to implement this plan. Local Adivasi youth were appointed as SPOs and Koya commandos and countless atrocities were perpetrated through them.
Our party believes that many of the SPOs had not gone on their own will and that they had turned into SPOs due to several kinds of pressures. Several of them were arrested, forcefully shifted to `relief’ camps, beaten, abused, threatened that they would be killed and thus turned into SPOs. Though at first they turned into SPOs fearing state terror, later gradually they became part of the force and have participated in all the atrocities perpetrated on the people. Some of the SPOs have participated in violence and atrocities on people against their will. They are feeling sorry for that. Several of the SPOs are not even aware that they have been used as pawns in the brutal orgy of terror and violence unleashed by white and khaki robed compradors like Mahendra Karma, Raman Singh, Viswaranjan, Nankiram by deploying thousands of police, paramilitary, Naga-Mizo battalions etc.
Home minister Chidambaram who is acting as the CEO of OGH, the war on people announced that he would conduct a meeting with chief ministers of the states where the Maoist movement is strong in the light of the above judgment. It is obvious that this meeting is being conducted with the conspiracy of finding out ways to continue this system of SPOs and Koya commandos under a different name. Politicians, top police brass and bureaucrats from Delhi and Raipur are now cracking their heads to somehow continue this SPO system in this unjust war on the people.
We want to make it clear to all the SPOs that this war is not between them and us. This war is being fought between a small minority of exploiters and the entire toiling masses of this country. On one side are the 95 percent of oppressed masses – the workers, peasants, middle classes, dalits, Adivasis, petty bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie; on the other side are the big landlords and the comprador bureaucratic bourgeoisie. These enemy classes have the complete support of the imperialists. These exploiting classes are using you as pawns by recruiting you into their repressive machinery. You are made into guinea pigs. As part of their `divide and rule’ policy they are bringing a section of the people to the forefront and are trying to portray this as a `civil war’ between the people. They stood you against the very people of whom you were once a part. `Patriotism’ and `defence of the country’ are some of the lies used by the ruling classes to incite you against the people’s movements that are fought with just demands. In fact, it is these very classes which are using you as cannon fodder that are the biggest enemies to our country. They are scamsters who have resorted to scams worth billions of rupees; they have mortgaged not only the riches of our country but also its sovereignty for the sake of kickbacks; they have stashed away billions of rupees of black money in Swiss banks by indiscriminate loot of the people of our country. It is due to these scamsters and gangsters that 77 percent of our population is not able to eat even two times per day. They have pushed us into the quagmire of poverty, price rises, unemployment, epidemics, starvation deaths, malnutrition etc. So do identify your real enemies. Don’t forget that your barrels are pointing at your very own people at present.
Dandakaranya Special Zonal committee of CPI (Maoist) calls upon all the SPOs to leave their jobs and come back to their villages. We, the party and the people, promise to rehabilitate all those SPOs who come back to their villages, accept all the crimes they have committed and seek the mercy of the people while severing all kinds of connections with the government machinery. Janatana Sarkar, the people’s government, would provide them lands and other instruments of production. They would be provided a guarantee for livelihood. So, we appeal to all the SPOs to come out of the vicious circle and the false propaganda of these exploitative governments. Do not crave for the morsels thrown by them, try to stand on your own feet and live with raised heads among the people of your villages. Do not live a life of insecurity and restlessness. Stand in support of the just struggles of the people of Dandakaranya fought against the absolute corporate loot of invaluable natural riches and for right over Jal-Jungle-Zameen.

(Gudsa Usendi)
Spokesperson
Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee
CPI (Maoist)
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Communist Party of India (Maoist) ‘OPPOSE THE RAOGHAT RAILWAY LINE AND THE MINING PROJECT’

Posted by ajadhind on August 17, 2011

COMMUNIST PARTY OF INDIA (MAOIST)

DANDAKARANYA SPECIAL ZONAL COMMITTEE

Press Release

June 7, 2011

OPPOSE THE RAOGHAT RAILWAY LINE AND THE MINING PROJECT
WHICH WOULD DE-RAIL THE VERY EXISTENCE OF BASTARIYA PEOPLE!

CLAIM OF SAVING BHILAI STEEL PLANT IS NOTHING BUT TRICKERY!

ENSURING THE PLUNDER OF BASTAR’S WEALTH
BY MULTI-NATIONAL COMPANIES IS REALITY!!

The moment when the process of deploying the Army in Bastar is just underway, the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), one of the biggest Public Sector Units of India, has declared that the Raoghat mines would be privatized. These two acts not just coincided, but there was a conspiratorial coordination between them. Raoghat hills are located just 25 kilometers away from Narayanpur (in Maad region), a district headquarter town, where the Raman Singh government of Chhattisgarh has given permission to the Army to acquire 750 square kilometers (i.e. 185,250+ acres) of land. Now so many notorious MNCs will rush into this area to rob the iron ore which is known for its best quality. From one side, the Army and from other side, the corporate companies are trying to gulp down the whole Maad region which is the motherland of Maria and Gond adivasis, the primitive tribal communities of Bastar.

In 2006, before the Raoghat project is commenced, some accusations were made against the management of BSP that it had illicitly leased out some of the deposits of Raoghat mines to Tata and NECO companies. People believed strongly that the BSP management was acting as paw in the hands of big business houses such as Tata, Essar, Jindal, NECO etc. But then it had cleverly managed it and stated that there was no such thing. But lately the chairperson of the SAIL, Chandrashekhar Verma himself has declared that they are going to privatize Raoghat mines and global tenders would be invited for this. (Source: Hindi daily Dainik Bhaskar, May 24, 2011). With this, now the game of hide-and-seek is over! Intentions of the exploitative governments are very clear! With the neo-liberal policies dictated by the imperialist masters getting implemented so openly, the MNCs would capture not just Raoghat mines; they would even buy the BSP or buy the SAIL itself. The recent examples of POSCO, Vedanta etc. of other states also clearly indicate this trend.

It’s believed that Raoghat hills are having 7.4 billion tonnes of iron ore which is known for finest quality with 62 percent Fe grade. BSP is supposed to excavate 511 million tonnes of iron ore. Construction of Dalli-Raoghat-Jagdalpur railway line is underway for this purpose. Government has already started grabbing the lands forcefully from the peasants between Dalli and Raoghat. But it’s facing stiff resistance from the local people.

This project in fact is an old one. In 1992, government was forced to give up implementing this project due to massive protests of people. In Antagarh, ten thousand adivasis had taken a massive procession to register their strong opposition to the proposed mining project. But the state had responded with repressive methods as always happens. A police camp was set up on the top of these hills. That camp is still present there. Our Party has been actively supporting this just struggle.

Local people are opposing this project because 3,278 hectares of forests would completely be destroyed. Apart from this, large portions of adjoining forests would also be destroyed. River Mendhki and so many other streams flowing through the region would get polluted. The farming will be destroyed so much that it is difficult to quantify. Local people see these mountains as their cultural centers and ritual faith. After the opening up of the mines these will be buried for ever. Many environmentalists believe that environment and monsoon from the perspective of Bastar, Raoghat Mountains are extremely important. With Raoghat mining project the existence of 23 villages will immediately be endangered. Further, 13 villages of adivasis might be uprooted in Chargaon area, next to this mine proposed by a private company of NECO Jaiswaals. (And now if you add the proposed massive acquisition of land by the Army – bloated 750 square kilometers – you can’t imagine that the existence of how many villages is going to disappear!)

On the issue of where to setup township for the proposed mines, an ugly tussle is going on amongst the business classes of Narayanpur and Antagarh. These selfish people do not worry at all about how many villages will be destroyed, how many thousands of tribals will be displaced, how much forest will be cut, how many rivers will be polluted and to what extent the tribal culture will be destroyed, when the mining work is started in this region. Overall, they don’t bother about the oncoming destruction in this region. They are supporting the government’s false claims of ‘Bastar development’ because they think that their own business will grow with this at the price of whatsoever.

Government still makes the argument in support of railway line and mine that the digging up of Raoghat mines is necessary as the mines of Dalli Rajhara which are supplying the raw material to the Bhilai steel plant are going to end up.  It’s making dubious propaganda that if the mining will not start in Raoghat, BSP could be stopped due to the scarcity of raw material, threatening the future of the thousands of BSP workers. Thus, such an environment is created that anybody dares to oppose Raoghat mine will immediately be labeled as ‘anti-development’. In fact, in the guise of this promotion, the government and administration have put a veil over many realities.

Dalli town today is in a position of almost desolation only because of the wrong policies of the BSP, particularly of indiscriminate mechanization. All rivers and streams of this area have been badly polluted. In Dalli and several surrounding villages, as red dirt coming of mines and roads turned on to the fields of farming, and the farming has been fully destroyed. In Dalli where 16 thousand workers used to work earlier, today the number has decreased drastically to 1200. Can the businessmen of Narayanpur and Antagarh and the contractors sitting in Raipur and Jagdalpur give the guarantee that after 20-25 years this region will not become another Dalli?

If the government is really worried that the ‘BSP will be closed if it won’t get raw materials supply’, then why doesn’t it stop selling iron ore of Bailadilla mines to the multinational companies of Japan, China and Korea? In fact, many sponge iron factories in Raipur and Bhilai have closed due to lack of iron ore supplies. They appealed to the government several times for supply of raw material from Bailadilla for them and to stop selling the iron ore to foreign companies. Doesn’t this prove that the interests of big and foreign capitalists are paramount for the spineless rulers of our country? Isn’t the government’s “concern” about the future of BSP workers just a pose? Isn’t this just a ploy being adopted to deal with the opposition putting up against proposed the Raoghat mine?

We urge all the workers, employees and other people who are concerned with the future of the BSP, that they should recognize who actually is a threat to the BSP. In 1960s, when the Bhilai steel plant was founded, the annual production was 1.5 million tonnes and the number of workers was 95 thousand. Today, the production has been increased to 4.5 million tonnes, but the number of workers is reduced to less than 37 thousand. Contracting, mechanization and partial privatization process are in full swing in BSP. Many facilities for workers have been taken back. New recruitment and compassionate appointment is closed. BSP is planning to increase the production to 7.5 million tonnes by 2012-13, taking up further modernization and expansion. This means even more layoffs and ‘retirements’ of workers will take place. And even there is a talk of selling out of BSP to Tatas, Mittals or Jindals! BALCO experience is before us. Overall, the policies of imperialist globalization which have been implemented by governments are responsible for this situation. So, you must fight against the anti-worker and pro-capitalist policies of the governments to protect the BSP. You should not fell prey to the designs of the ruling classes to inflict destruction to the Jal-Jungle-Zameen by opening mines in another area. You should fight against this too. Entire people of Dandakaranya will support your struggles.

The Special Zonal Committee of the Communist Party of India (Maoist) calls upon all the workers and farmers of Chhattisgarh and democratic and patriotic forces of our country to demand the closure of Raoghat project; to register their protest to mechanization, contracting and all other anti-worker policies being implemented in Bhilai steel plant and other industries; to demand to stop selling the high quality iron ore to the foreign companies from Bailadilla; to lend support to the people of Dandakaranya who are fighting for the right over their Jal-Jungle-Zameen; and to oppose the Army deployment in Bastar to suppress their just struggles.

 

 

(Gudsa Usendi)

Spokesperson

Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             CPI (Maoist)

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Communist Party of India (Maoist) ‘OPPOSE THE ARMY DEPLOYMENT IN BASTAR!’

Posted by ajadhind on August 17, 2011

COMMUNIST PARTY OF INDIA (MAOIST)

DANDAKARANYA SPECIAL ZONAL COMMITTEE

Press Release

June 3, 2011

 

OPPOSE THE ARMY DEPLOYMENT IN BASTAR!

TALK OF ‘TRAINING’ IS NOTHING BUT A PLOY TO DECEIT THE PEOPLE!

GIVING POWERS TO THE ARMY TO ATTACK IN THE PRETEXT OF ‘SELF-DEFENSE’
IS NOTHING BUT FREE-HAND FOR MASSACRES AND ATROCITIES ON ADIVASIS!

 

As the first column of the Indian Army arrived in Kanker, the formal process of Army deployment in Bastar has commenced. But hiding this fact from the eyes of the people, the rulers are propagating falsehood that the Army was coming here just for training and not to fight the Maoists. It’s being said that in the name of `self defense’, the ministries of Defence and Law had issued `guiding principles’ for the Army, but nobody is ready to reveal the details. It’s noteworthy that the Air Force was already given the right to attack in `self-defense’.

The Central and State governments have been hiding the fact that this was obvious deployment and have been telling the world that they were just coming here for a training as part of their ploy of deceiving the people and pacifying those democratic forces who have been outrageous against Army deployment. The glaring fact is that the Army is now deployed in the ongoing war against people of our country. After Kashmir and North-East regions, now the Indian Army is going to wage a brutal war against most oppressed people of India. Now the apprehensions seem to be realized that the draconian law – AFSPA (Armed Forces Special Powers Act) would also be proclaimed in Bastar.

In fact the government gave free-hand to the Army and Air Force to attack the people in the name of `self-defense’, as there are no measures defined for clear-cut demarcation between a Maoist combatant and an ordinary citizen. Since 2005, first in Salwa Judum and now in Operation Green Hunt, state armed forces set ablaze more than 700 villages; murdered more than 1500 people; raped hundreds of Adivasi women; burnt down the crops; looted the villages; and forced tens of thousands of people to flee from their native places. Recent carnage of Chintalnar was just an example of ongoing state terror in Dandakaranya. And now, with the Army taking part in this onslaught and with all powers granted to it in the name self-defense, the massacres of Adivasis and brutalities would increase manifold. This would pose a big question mark on the very existence of the Adivasi community. Particularly, the Jal-Jungle-Zameen and the ancient cultural heritage of the Mariya tribes, the indigenous residents of Maad, would be vanished.

A heated discussion is going on across the country on the issue of land grab these days. Particularly, in the context of Uttar Pradesh incidents, all political parties belonging to the ruling classes including Congress and BJP have been portraying themselves as the `champions of peasants’ and vaguely speaking against the forceful land acquisitions as part of promoting their vested political interests. But all these `champions’ are keeping themselves mum on this huge land grab taking place in one of the most backward Adivasi areas of the country in the name of Army training. BJP’s Raman Singh government has decided to uncaringly give away as much as 750 square kilometers of land in the Maad area of Narayanpur district for one of the three proposed training schools to be set up. Raman Singh, the man who has been trumpeting his cheap tactic of selling one kilogram of chana per month for 5 rupees to each adivasi family in Bastar region, is completely unmasked now. There has neither been any debate nor been any discussion about the decision of giving away such a huge portion of precious land and forest. Laws like PESA (Panchayat Extension to Scheduled Areas) and 5th Schedule have become a joke here. The local Mariya people of Maad region are completely unaware that the land on which they have been living for thousands of years and the forest with whose support they have been able to survive till this day, are no more of them. One fifth of the total 4,000 square kilometers area of Maad region would now be given away to the army. It would be expanded further according to the reports coming in media. As Army vehicles started moving into Bastar, the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) has declared that the Raoghat mining project would be privatized and a global tender notice would be issued. This makes the picture very clear now. On one side there would be a vast Army base and on the other side of the Maad region the MNCs would fall in line in a rush to plunder the precious iron ore from Raoghat hills. The mining mafia would become active with their pending mining projects and the lands of the tribal people would be acquired forcefully. Now it’s not at all difficult to realize who is coming with what intension and what the interrelation between them is!!

Politically, today the Maoist movement is posing a serious challenge to the pro-imperialist neo-liberal policies being implemented by the servile rulers of our country. The struggles of Adivasis and the Maoists who are leading them have become gravest threat for the ruling classes of India and their imperialist masters, who are hell-bent on looting huge deposits of precious minerals from the Adivasi regions in particular. In Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal and other states, hundreds of MoUs that were signed by state governments and the corporate houses are not getting implemented due to the opposition posed by people. Particularly in Dandakaranya, several projects of big corporate houses, such as mines, big dams and heavy industries have been held up due to organized protests and resistance struggles of the people. To sum up, in Dandakaranya the exploiters’ juggernaut of `development’ has not been able to move forward. That’s why they have been waging this brutal war against the people in which now the Army is involved.

The Bastariya Adivasis have never bowed their head to exploitation, injustice, suppression and alien rule. They have a glorious history of several rebellions against the British colonialists. In 1910, at the time of Mahan Bhumkaal, a great tribal uprising, the British rulers had deployed the army against the people of Bastar. Now, after a hundred years, the rulers have once again sent the Army so that their just struggles could be crushed cruelly. We call upon the people of Dandakaranya to face this challenge boldly. People are the creators of history! So, the ultimate victory will only be theirs!!

Our Special Zonal Committee appeals to all democrats, human rights organizations, anti-displacement movements, Adivasis’ organizations, and well-wishers of Adivasis, intellectuals, writers, Artistes and media persons to raise their voice against setting up of Army training schools in Bastar and the proposed huge land grab meant for this purpose. Come forward to build agitations with the slogan – “Indian Army, Go back from Bastar”. Oppose the deployment of the Army in the ongoing war against people in the name of training schools. Demand to scrap all those MoUs signed by the government of Chhattisgarh with big corporate houses and all those projects of forceful land acquisition.

 

(Gudsa Usendi)

Spokesperson

Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee

CPI (Maoist)

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The many lives of Gudsa Usendi

Posted by ajadhind on March 13, 2011

Aman Sethi, The hindu

Phantom spokesman is emblematic of Chhattisgarh’s secretive yet media-savvy Maoists

‘Today I am Gudsa Usendi, tomorrow it could be someone else’

Maoists keenly aware of connection between surveillance and communication


— Photo: Akhilesh Kumar

A file photo of a Maoist training camp in the forest of Dantewada district

Raipur: In the autumn of 2007, a suave, middle-aged man with a military bearing walked into Naresh Bazaar cloth store near the Bilaspur bus stand and bought a thousand metres of olive green tericot fabric for Rs. 101 a metre. According to a shop assistant, the man looked like an ex-serviceman, spoke in English, introduced himself as Sunil Choudhury, a private security contractor with contracts to secure factories across Chhattisgarh, and said he needed uniforms for his guards.

Later that year, Choudhury appeared at Dayaram Sahu’s workshop in Raipur’s Purani Basti and asked the struggling tailor to stitch him trousers of waist sizes 28, 30 and 36 inches with corresponding shirts. “He said he employed more than 50 security guards and each watchman needed three sets of uniform,” said Sahu. “He asked for 35 uniforms, and promised another 100 sets if he liked my work.”

It appears that Choudhury liked Sahu’s work; when the Raipur police raided the workshop in early 2008, they claim to have found 634 metres of military green cloth, 200 trousers and 107 full-sleeved shirts.

Sunil Choudhury, the police said, was not a security contactor but was Katta Ramchandra Reddy alias Vijay alias Gudsa Usendi, a high ranking member and spokesperson of the Dandakaranya Special Zonal (DKZ) Committee of the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist). The uniforms were meant for Maoist guerrillas rather than private security guards.

According to police charge sheets and court documents, Gudsa Usendi is the shadowy figure who sent compact discs of Maoist propaganda to Raipur politicians in 2006 and was the source of a consignment of 91 country-made shotguns recovered from a busy intersection in Raipur in 2008. The police claim he was in frequent contact with jailed human rights activist and award-winning paediatrician Binayak Sen and independent filmmaker Ajay T.G., an association denied by both Dr. Sen and Ajay. Gudsa’s supposed wife, K.S. Malti, is currently in Raipur Central Jail; another alleged associate of his was arrested in Durg as recently as September last year. But who is Gudsa Usendi? “Gudsa Usendi is just a name,” said a smooth voice over the telephone in August last year, “Today I am Gudsa Usendi, tomorrow it could be someone else. Gudsa Usendi is the title taken over by the spokesperson for the DKZ.”

Maoist spokespersons have long had a fascination for aliases. Before he was slain in a police encounter last year, Maoist central committee spokesperson Cherukuri Rajkumar was known to the outside world as Azad (translated as Free), but within the party he went by several names including Madhu, Gangadhar, Uday and Dinesh. His successor goes by the name of Abhay (translated as Fearless); the spokesperson who handled the abduction of Malkangiri District Collector R.V. Krishna in February went by the name of ‘Prasad,’ but Dandakaranya’s Gudsa Usendi is different, because Gudsa Usendi was once a ‘real’ person.

“It was at about three in the morning in Potenar village in Abujmarh. It was June 25 2000, it was raining heavily. There were six comrades in a hut when they were surrounded by the police,” said a young Maoist fighter who called herself Rehmati. “Five comrades were killed, one of them was Gudsa Usendi. He was 17.”

When he joined the Maoists, Gudsa Usendi dropped his given name and took on the moniker of ‘Ramesh.’ He was of the Maria tribe from Chhattisgarh’s Abujmarh region, according to the Maoists. A year after his death, the Maoist spokesperson of Dandakaranya (broadly corresponding with South Chhattisgarh) took on his name to keep his memory alive and the practice has continued ever since.

The Maoists are wary of sharing organisational details with reporters, but anecdotal evidence suggests that Gudsa Usendi functions at the centre of a cloud of cell phones, laptops and individuals. A message from Gudsa Usendi could appear as a note under your door, a letter postmarked by a small town on the Chhattisgarh-Andhra Pradesh border, an email from an IP address that traces back to a neighbouring State, or a micro-SD card stuck to a sheet of paper.

In a recent meeting, a member of their communications team explained that every Maoist division (equivalent to a zilla in the panchayati sytem) has access to a laptop, memory cards, a portable inkjet printer and a cell phone. The netbook examined by this correspondent ran an open source Linux-based operating system with open source text, image and video editing software. Gudsa Usendi usually prepares a press note and hands it over to one of his assistants. Major press releases (like the announcement for Martyrs Week) are designed using crack versions of software like Adobe Pagemaker and converted into PDF format, before being sent to printing presses installed in secret locations.

“We prefer PDF format, because it removes the problem of fonts when issuing press releases in English and Hindi,” explained an assistant, referring to a document format created by Adobe. The files are emailed from the top of a tall tree on a mountaintop where a GPRS enabled phone can log onto a stray network

All the devices are charged by truck batteries connected to solar panels. “Batteries provide direct current (DC); laptops and phones need alternating current (AC),” explained the assistant patiently, “So we add a DCAC inverter to the circuit and use solar power to charge our devices.”

The Maoists are keenly aware of the connection between surveillance and communication. In the forests, only certain senior cadres are allowed to carry cell phones and use their devices sparingly. “We have to secure an area and post sentries before making a phone call,” said a Maoist commander who carries a Nokia phone. However, the poor density of cellular towers in Maoist territories makes it hard to pinpoint the location of a particular phone.

On a windy day in Konta in Chhattisgarh’s Dantewada district for instance, it is possible to pick up reception from a tower in Andhra Pradesh’s Khammam district; by moving 50 km northwards from the same spot in Konta, a user can start ranging towers in Orissa’s Malkangiri district, moving further towards Chintrakonda in Malkangiri, the Andhra network comes back into range. Somewhere in that broad stretch of land, a man climbs up a tree, pulls out a cell phone from the folds of his clothes and makes a phone call. “Hello? I have a statement from Gudsa Usendi,” he says.

Posted in CHHATISGARH, IN NEWS, NAXALISM | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

 
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