Maoist adamant, Chhattisgarh looks for way out | india | Hindustan Times
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Maoist adamant, Chhattisgarh looks for way out

india Updated: Jun 14, 2011 00:04 IST
Ejaz Kaiser

As the state forces take solace in the hope that the upsurge of violence in Chhattisgarh is a fallout of the Maoists' janpituri saptah (Peoples' revolution Week), the guerillas are clear on their demands.

In an email sent to HT last week, they spelt these out: A halt for Operation Greenhunt, a pullout of the army from Bastar region, stringent punishment to police officers who, according to Maoists, had committed atrocities against poor tribals and unconditional release of all imprisoned tribals.

The violence, meanwhile, continues with 36 security personnel dying in seven attacks carried out over the last 25 days.

Assailed by lack of basic infrastructure like latrines - five security men died in Narayanpur when they went to relieve themselves - and weaponry, the forces are struggling to enforce their standard operating procedures.

The police are fretting over late night attacks and fear a confidence boost for Maoists on account of their recent successes.

"During the night, guerillas use darkness to their advantage for a quick getaway while a moving vehicle becomes noticeable, so a vehicle must be avoided," said Brigadier (Rtd) BK Ponwar, director of Chhattisgarh-based counter-terrorism and jungle warfare college.

"The forces must adhere to jungle warfare rules," Ponwar added.

Meanwhile, the Centre plans to ramp-up its counter-measures by reviewing inter-state coordination among forces.

Home minister P Chidambaram has called a meeting of chief ministers and police chiefs of Orissa and Chhattisgarh on Tuesday.

A strategy to intensify anti-Naxal operations will be hammered out at the meeting.

With inputs from Delhi bureau