Maoist leadership in the cities needs to be identified: Lt Gen(retd) Shekatkar
FINS president DB Shekatkar says the threat of Maoism is grave, especially in urban areas
More than a month before the Pune (Urban) Police blamed Maoist sympathisers for the violence in Bhima Koregaon, a Mumbai-based think tank had made the connection. In its March 9 report, the Forum for Integrated National Security (FINS), drew a link between Maoist groups and the Elgaar Parishad event on December 31, 2017, which was organised by Dalit and Left groups – a link that was later confirmed by police in its charge sheet. In conversation with Abhay Vaidya and Nadeem Inamdar, FINS president DB Shekatkar says the threat of Maoism is grave, especially in urban areas. Excerpts.
Your institute was the first to point out the Maoist links in Elgaar Parishad and the riots at Bhima Koregaon. Can you elaborate?
We conducted the predictive study of Left Wing Extremism in advance and even today we are carrying out study and research. This philosophy of the Maoist is there. We have not named the people in the report.
At what stage did you share the details with the police?
We shared the report at appropriate levels, right from the state to the Centre. This is our estimate regarding Maoism, based on study and research. The police have got the evidence.
How serious is the Maoist threat?
The conflict with Maoists is likely to develop into one of the most prevalent forms of political violence in the coming days and may spread to other urban cities earlier immune to violence.
What is the kind of intelligence required?
Actionable intelligence from locals is the key.
What, in your view, is the strategy required for tackling them ?
A: Maoists are the greatest threat to internal security of the country as said by former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. India should strengthen its own security forces and state mechanisms to contain the Maoists. The Maoist threat is assuming dangerous proportions and educational institutes are becoming the battlefields in the name of human rights