The banned left wing extremist group, CPI (Maoists), currently active in all the 24 district of Jharkhand, is headed for tougher days ahead as security forces have succeeded to infiltrate the group.
Joint forces comprising the state police and the central para military force have successfully managed to penetrate and plant its moles in the rebel group that was declared as the biggest internal security threat by former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Over the past six months--ever since the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government has come to power--these well-placed moles or spies, have been helping and guiding the security forces to carry out several successful operations against the rebels.
The arrests of several top Maoist leaders, including the organisation’s technical chief Sanjay Ganjhu, zonal commander Prasad Lakra, and the death of its Bihar regional committee member Sylvestor alias Shivnandan Bhagat on Saturday, are proof enough that someone amongst the rebels is leaking information of their movements and whereabouts to the security forces.
Apart from these three top leaders, at least a dozen sub-zonal commanders nabbed over the last six months were considered ‘pillars’ of the proscribed organisation.
These fugitives who were either arrested or killed had joined the outlawed group more than two to three decades back and are credited of shaping and building the organization with their expertise and leadership skills.
Forget arresting them, security forces a couple of years back, neither had any clue of how the leaders looked like nor had any detail of their movements.
The rebel leaders used to move freely in villages under their control and their intelligence network was considered better than that of the police.
Cut to 2015 and the conditions have changed drastically for the ultras.
Today, security forces have clear and discernible photographs of all the top Maoist leaders heading the various sub-zonal, zonal, regional committees in the state. It also has minute details on the movement of central committee members within the state boundaries.
The forces are successful in keeping tabs on the rebels’ movement by tapping their phone, says a senior CRPF officer heading the anti-Naxal operations in Gumla, who requested not to be quoted as he is not authorized to speak to the media.
“All top Naxal leaders are currently on our radar and within our firing range,” he said.
“We are waiting for the opportune moment and a firm order from the government to raid their hideouts and eliminate them.”
Soon after taking oath, chief minister Raghubar Das had said that his government would eliminate the Maoists menace within six months.
Director general of police DK Pandey said a firm action plan is in place and security forces are going all out to root out the menace once and for all.
CRPF inspector general Rakesh Mishra said that of the 12 zones identified as Maoist-affected in the state, at least eight zones have been rebel-free.
“As we get few more companies of central forces, we would spread our presence to those areas where we haven’t reached yet and push the last nails in Maoists’ coffins,” Mishra added.
The last press note issued by Maoists’ spokesperson Deenbandhu alias Sylvester, a fortnight before he was killed on Saturday, blamed splinter outfit JJMP for the arrests and killings of their leaders.
“They are renegades who are currently working hand-in-gloves with (security) forces. We are punishing them regularly, but they don’t seem to mend their ways,” Sylvester had said in the press note.
Though police have been denying the nexus, it is an established fact that the JJMP is leading the security forces to the Maoists’ hideouts and also fighting them.
Reliable sources told Hindustan Times that a joint team of the JJMP and the CRPF’s Cobra unit had raided and killed Sylvester on Saturday morning.
Unconfirmed reports said that Sylvester had in his possession more than Rs.10 lakh.
The levy money was to be expended for a high-level meeting of the top Maoist leaders in Gumla shortly.