This Diwali, NGO reaches out to women Maoists in Chhattisgarh with feminine hygiene products
The New Peace Process, an NGO working in Chhattisgarh’s Left-wing insurgency-hit Bastar region, is trying to reach out to women Maoists in the region with “Diwali gifts” of menstrual cups and reusable sanitary pads. It started fundraising for the campaign on Wednesday hoping the region’s people will support them in sending a message to initiate peace talks.
The New Peace Process convenor Shubhranshu Choudhary said when he met the women Maoists, they told him they were suffering in the jungles. He added that is why they decided to help them. “...women Maoists...walk long distances in the jungles... hence we decided to help them because it is an issue of women’s health.
Choudhary said they are trying to help these women so that they can start talking. “We regularly go to Maoist areas of Bastar, where we are stopped by lower-rung cadres of Maoists. We will drop these gifts and request them to send them to woman cadres. We do not agree with their politics but this Diwali, we want to send them a message that we care for them and will be keen to talk and encourage them that they also talk to the government to resolve the differences.”
Chaudhary said they have informed police about the humanitarian initiative aimed at peace-building. “On October 2, at Bastar Dialogue, where experts were called to speak about the problem of Maoist conflict, the suggestion about this Gift campaign was made.”
Inspector general (Bastar) Sunderaj P said police and security forces deployed in Bastar always encourage the reintegration of local Maoist cadres into the mainstream. “Our surrender and rehabilitation policy is one of the best in the country. We appreciate each and every effort being carried out in the direction of establishing peace and order in Bastar. We wish the local Naxal cadres, particularly the female cadres identify the real and ugly face of top Maoist cadres and reunite with their families.”