Madakam Lakha joined the Maoists in 1998 as a member of Bal Sanhgam (child soldiers). Earlier, he used to stitch the Maoist commanders’ clothes, but after he surrendered he’s helping the police.(HT Photo)
Madakam Lakha joined the Maoists in 1998 as a member of Bal Sanhgam (child soldiers). Earlier, he used to stitch the Maoist commanders’ clothes, but after he surrendered he’s helping the police.(HT Photo)

Once a Maoist, he now stitches 90 masks a day to combat Covid-19

Lakha, who hails from the Muriya tribe, a sub-tribe of the Gond, from the state’s Sukma district, feels privileged that he got the opportunity to stitch masks for the local tribal people amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
By Ritesh Mishra | Hindustan Times, Raipur
UPDATED ON APR 13, 2020 07:01 PM IST

Life has come a full circle for Madakam Lakha, who would stitch uniforms for the outlawed Communist Party of India (Maoist) commanders such as Ramanna --- he died last December --- and Madvi Hidma in the remote jungles of South Sukma in Chhattisgarh till he surrendered eight months ago. Now, he is devoting all his energy in sewing masks to combat the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak.

Lakha (38), a resident of Bhimapuram village under Jagargonda police station surrendered in August 2019, is lodged in Sukma Police Line, which is located about 400km away from the state capital Raipur.

Follow live updates on coronavirus

“Lakha came to know about the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) units such as masks a few days ago and started stitching them inside Sukma Police Line. He’s making up to 90 masks a day that are being distributed by the police among the local tribal people,” Sundarraj Patilingam, Inspector General of Police (IG) in South Bastar Range, said.

“Lakha joined the Maoists in 1998 as a member of Bal Sanhgam (child soldiers). Earlier, he used to stitch the Maoist commanders’ clothes, but after he surrendered he’s helping the police,” the IG said.

Lakha, who hails from the Muriya tribe, a sub-tribe of the Gond, from the state’s Sukma district, feels privileged that he got the opportunity to stitch masks for the local tribal people amid the Covid-19 pandemic. “It’s a matter of great personal satisfaction for me that I’m contributing in my humble way in this battle against Covid-19. I wanted to utilise my stitching skills to good use to help the local tribal people,” Lakha said.

Shalabh Sinha, superintendent of police (SP), Sukma, said that Lakha has been a goldmine of information about the Maoists. “Lakha comes from that inaccessible part of Sukma, which is the core of Maoists’ activities in Bastar. He’s helping us with invaluable inputs and also interpreting the local tribal dialects for us,” the SP said.

Besides, Lakha holds the key for the police because of his access to the ultra-Left party’s top brass in Chhattisgarh. “He’s an asset for us because he has stitched clothes for Maoist commanders such as Ramanna and Madvi Hidma,” the SP added.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
He also said the unresolved borders and wars in the past with "our adversaries" challenge the myth of 'no conventional war', adding proxy war, 'Left wing extremism' and insurgencies are likely to keep the Army occupied.(PTI Photo)
He also said the unresolved borders and wars in the past with "our adversaries" challenge the myth of 'no conventional war', adding proxy war, 'Left wing extremism' and insurgencies are likely to keep the Army occupied.(PTI Photo)

India to face higher security challenges in line with rising stature: Naravane

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:33 PM IST
In an address at a seminar on Army-industry partnership, Gen Naravane talked about twin challenges of Covid-19 pandemic and the "belligerence" on the northern borders that his force faced in 2020, and said the government's focus on self-reliance will boost the country's overall strategic objectives.
Close
Farmers protest at Singhu border in New Delhi on January 20. (PTI)(HT_PRINT)
Farmers protest at Singhu border in New Delhi on January 20. (PTI)(HT_PRINT)

Farmers reject centre's proposal to put laws on hold for 1.5 years

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:38 PM IST
The ball is now again at the Centre's court as farmers have rejected the proposal of keeping the laws in abeyance for 1.5 years.
Close
At least 7.49 crore devotees have taken the dip in the waters of Sangam in Prayagraj till Sunday since the beginning of the 49-day Kumbh Mela from January 15, the Uttar Pradesh government has said. A report said that on the first day of the Kumbh Mela, which began with the first of the three Shahi Snans of Makar Sankranti, 2.25 crore people bathed in the Sangam. (Sheeraz Rizvi / HT File)
At least 7.49 crore devotees have taken the dip in the waters of Sangam in Prayagraj till Sunday since the beginning of the 49-day Kumbh Mela from January 15, the Uttar Pradesh government has said. A report said that on the first day of the Kumbh Mela, which began with the first of the three Shahi Snans of Makar Sankranti, 2.25 crore people bathed in the Sangam. (Sheeraz Rizvi / HT File)

Uttarakhand govt asks Centre for 20,000 additional Covid vaccines for Kumbh Mela

ANI, Dehradun
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:18 PM IST
The state Covid-19 Control Room chief Dr Abhishek Tripathi informed that the state government has sent a proposal to the Centre in this regard.
Close
Two Indian flights carried two million doses of Covishield to Dhaka and one million doses to Kathmandu on Thursday. (MEA)
Two Indian flights carried two million doses of Covishield to Dhaka and one million doses to Kathmandu on Thursday. (MEA)

India sends 3 mn vaccine doses to Bangladesh, Nepal. China steps in for Pakistan

By Rezaul H Laskar | Edited by Sohini Sarkar
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:11 PM IST
  • Six countries – Bhutan, the Maldives, Bangladesh, Nepal, Seychelles and Myanmar – are part of India’s initial rollout of vaccines as grant assistance. There are also plans to supply doses to Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and Mauritius.
Close
Jharkhand education minister Jagarnath Mahto(Pic: Sourced)
Jharkhand education minister Jagarnath Mahto(Pic: Sourced)

Covid-19: Jharkhand minister recovers after double lung transplant in Chennai

By Divya Chandrababu
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:05 PM IST
Only a few lung transplants on Covid-19 patients have been performed across the world and the minister’s critical condition necessitated the procedure.
Close
Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy(PTI Photo)
Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy(PTI Photo)

Puducherry CM to meet President, seek recall of Lt Governor Kiran Bedi: Report

Written by Prashasti Singh, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:28 PM IST
Agriculture minister R Kamalakannan, welfare minister M Kandasamy, health minister Malladi Krishna Rao and the only member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) from Puducherry V Vaithilingam would also be accompanying the CM, sources said.
Close
Workers rush out of the building after fire breaks out at Serum Institute of India, Pune, on Thursday. (PTI)
Workers rush out of the building after fire breaks out at Serum Institute of India, Pune, on Thursday. (PTI)

'Anguished': PM Modi tweets after fire kills 5 at Pune's Serum Institute

By hindustantimes.com, HT Correspondent | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:16 PM IST
PM Modi prayed for speedy recovery of those who have been injured in the accident.
Close
Kannada actress Ragini Dwivedi was arrested by the Bengaluru police in September 2020 in connection with a probe into a drugs case.(PTI FILE PHOTO)
Kannada actress Ragini Dwivedi was arrested by the Bengaluru police in September 2020 in connection with a probe into a drugs case.(PTI FILE PHOTO)

Supreme Court grants bail to Kannada actor accused of drug peddling

By Abraham Thomas
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:36 PM IST
  • Ragini Dwivedi has been in custody for over 140 days after her arrest last September.
Close
Siddiqui, who has emerged as one of the most vocal critics of the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress, recently held a meeting with Asaduddin Owaisi, leader of the All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM). (TWITTER).
Siddiqui, who has emerged as one of the most vocal critics of the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress, recently held a meeting with Asaduddin Owaisi, leader of the All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM). (TWITTER).

Popular Muslim cleric Abbas Siddiqui floats new political party in Bengal

PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:34 PM IST
  • He is the scion of the Siddiqui family, which is the custodian of the famous Furfura Sharif shrine, one of the most popular places of pilgrimage in Bengal.
Close
Kangana will have to appear at Juhu police station on Friday. Early this month, she and her sister Rangoli Chandel appeared before Mumbai police in a sedition case.
Kangana will have to appear at Juhu police station on Friday. Early this month, she and her sister Rangoli Chandel appeared before Mumbai police in a sedition case.

'Hyenas': Kangana reacts to Mumbai Police's summon in Javed Akhtar case

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:38 PM IST
"Put me in jail...torture me and push me against the wall with 500 cases," she wrote.
Close
Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh(HT Photo )
Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh(HT Photo )

Manipur ranks 3rd in Niti Aayog’s innovation index for hill states

By Sobhapati Samom
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:01 PM IST
In the India Innovation Index-2020, the states and union territories have been divided into 17 major states, 10 north-east and hill states and nine union territories and small states for effectively comparing their performance.
Close
Smoke billows out after a massive fire broke out at the Serum Institute of India, in Pune, Thursday.(PTI)
Smoke billows out after a massive fire broke out at the Serum Institute of India, in Pune, Thursday.(PTI)

Maharashtra orders probe into SII fire that killed 5; Covid vaccine plant safe

UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:02 PM IST
  • The Maharashtra government will also conduct a fire audit of the Serum Institute building in Pune after a blaze killed five people.
Close
Players crowding around the collapsed man. (Photo@riteshmishraht)
Players crowding around the collapsed man. (Photo@riteshmishraht)

Man, 20, dies during kabaddi match in Chhattisgarh; spectator records video

UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 06:25 PM IST
Narendra Sahu, a resident of Kokadi village of Dhamtari district, died inside the opponent’s court when he was caught by the players.
Close
It is the first smart weapon to be fired from an Indian Hawk Mk132 trainer aircraft. The Hawk-i project seeks to equip the trainer jet with combat capabilities through an internally-funded HAL programme. (ANI PHOTO).
It is the first smart weapon to be fired from an Indian Hawk Mk132 trainer aircraft. The Hawk-i project seeks to equip the trainer jet with combat capabilities through an internally-funded HAL programme. (ANI PHOTO).

In a first, Hawk-i aircraft fires smart anti-airfield weapon off Odisha coast

By Rahul Singh | Edited by Sohini Sarkar
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 06:20 PM IST
  • The SAAW is a precision strike weapon that can be used to target enemy airfield assets such as radars, bunkers, taxi tracks and runways.
Close
Bombay high court.
Bombay high court.

Judiciary, agencies like CBI, ED should act independently: Bombay HC

PTI, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 05:59 PM IST
Khadse's counsel Aabad Ponda sought the court to grant the former state revenue minister interim protection from any coercive action.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP