A group of citizens from the tribal district of Gadchiroli have raised their voices against the naxalite menace in the district and totally inept response from the security forces. They have now knocked the doors of Bombay high court for an intervention.
In a letter addressed to the chief justice of the high court, citizens of naxalite-hit district said that since the last 30 years, innocent tribals are being killed at the hands of Maoists and the political and police leadership of the state is clueless about the dealing with naxalite menace. They have requested the court to treat the letter as a public interest litigation.
They blamed the state for its failure to protect innocent tribals from gun wielding and trigger-happy Naxalites who are not bound by any law. They have killed 444 innocent civilians, mostly tribals and 183 policemen in last 30 years and state has ceased to exist in areas, like Gadchiroli, letter stated.
Despite killing 627 people, the Naxalites are brazenly operating from their jungle hide-outs and even urban centres and portraying a very misleading picture of people’s right and alleged police atrocities, it stated while charging establishment with lacking political will to take on Maoist murderers.
In 2009 alone, 158 naxalite offences were recorded in which 93 people, including 52 policemen were killed and cops are yet to recover from this devastating body-blow. Interestingly in 2010 and 2011, there was a sudden drop in police death, the reason being, the police simply went into hiding and never ventured out of their police stations, the letter alleged. As a result, “the defenseless civilians have been left to die at the hands of naxalites,” the petition further said.
Despite pouring hundreds of crores and deployment of security forces, unfortunately, the police are hiding and terrorists are killing the helpless population, the letter lamented while expressing deep anguish over inability of forces to reign in Maoists who are running a “brutal” and parallel government without challenge. The letter cited examples of brutality by Maoists and how throats of innocent tribal are slit and some are hacked to pieces.
Interestingly, the letter signed by Ramesh Gharde, Tara Meshram of Budsdhist Peace Centre and others, also alleged that the left-wing terrorism has become a major source of income for Maoists as well as the state government. Maoists extort money from people and contractors while the state gets liberal financial aid from central government. “The state has totally failed to control the menace, now as a last resort we approach you to do something so that we, the common citizens, may stay alive,” it urged and requested the court to give direction to the centre, state and Maharashtra Police to take appropriate steps to curb the menace.