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International Campaign Against War on the People in India

 

Stop all attacks against the people!

 

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  • Two die in protest against proposed power plant

    Press Trust Of India, Feb 28, 2011
    Visakhapatnam: Two persons were killed and five injured when police opened fire to control villagers protesting against setting up of a thermal power plant in Andhra Pradesh's Srikakulam district on Monday.

    "Two persons were killed and five sustained injuries in the incident at Vadditandra village," said Srikakulam SP KVV Gopal Rao, adding some several policemen were also hurt.

    The situation at the project site where East Coast Energy Pvt Ltd is developing a 2,640 MW Super Critical Coal fired power project in Santhabommali Mandal continues to be tense for the past two days after the policemen disrupted the fast undertook by some fishermen and villagers on Saturday.

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  • Swami Agnivesh and friends meet the comrades

    Supriya Sharma, TNN--February 13, 2011
    NARAYANPUR: "Have you seen the film Avataar?," asked Swami Agnivesh, as he trudged along a jungle path this Friday, carefully avoiding sharp edged stones, and the even sharper thorns in the bushes.

    "Isn't this place like the other planet shown in the film? And aren't our adivasi brothers just like the Naavi people? Simple and innocent".

    Clad in his trademark saffron, at striking contrast with the greens and browns of the forest, the 71 year old social activist was on his way to free five policemen held hostage for 18 days by the Maoists. The destination was an undisclosed location somewhere inside Abhujmaad, literally the unknown forest, in Chhattisgarh's Bastar region. And accompanying the Swami, were a group of human right activists, a gaggle of media, and the distraught families of the captured policemen.

    "I want my munna back," wept Amarwati Devi, tears rolling down her creased face, half covered with the pallu of her saree. The old woman had travelled with her daughter from a village in Rewa, Madhya Pradesh by tonga, train, bus, and car. Like the others, she was finally trekking in the jungle to reunite with her 26 year old son.

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  • Nobel laureates rally behind Binayak Sen

    The Hindu, February 10, 2011
    Forty Nobel laureates have given a call for the release of Dr. Sen on bail immediately, and for the expeditious hearing of his case.

    A group of 40 Nobel laureates from 12 countries has signed a petition for the immediate release on bail of activist-doctor Binayak Sen. Following the lead of Amartya Sen, these laureates have also expressed their support for Dr. Sen.

    The senior-most laureate in the group is 91-year-old French scientist François Jacob (Nobel Prize, 1965). It also includes Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, who won the award in 2009, Joseph Murray who pioneered kidney transplantation, and Baruch Samuel Blumberg who identified the Hepatitis B virus

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  • Order on Binayak Sen's bail plea tomorrow

    Supriya Sharma, TNN, Feb 9, 2011
    BILASPUR: Chhattisgarh High Court will pronounce its order on the bail application of Dr Binayak Sen on Thursday afternoon. The civil rights activist has spent a month and half in Raipur jail after the sessions court sentenced him to life term for sedition on December 24.

    On Wednesday, the HC division bench of Justice T P Sharma and Justice R L Jhanwar reserved an order on his bail plea after the prosecution wrapped up its arguments.

    Opposing the bail plea, additional advocate general Kishore Bhaduri, representing Chhattisgarh government, argued that Sen had been convicted guilty on serious charges.

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  • BJP's Ram slams Raman Rajya

    Chhattisgarh High Court will give its order on the bail plea of Dr Binayak Sen and Kolkata businessman Piyush Guha on Thursday, 10th February. Prosecution wound up its arguments on the 9th taking a little over an hour. Ram Jethmalani and Surinder Singh had argued for almost four hours over two days for suspension of sentence earlier in the end of January. Justice T P Sharma, the senior judge in the two bench court was extremely well- versed with the ins and outs of the case and, did give prosecution a few uncomfortable moments. Justice T P Sharma was also the state law secretary when the Chhattisgarh Special Public Security Act was formulated. On Wednesday, two members from the European Union, one representative of Amnesty International were also present in the court.

    As we await for the order, this is the complete interview with eminent jurist and BJP MP Ram Jethmalani, a part of it has already played. Speaking for the first time after his return from Chhattisgarh, Mr Jethmalani said that the prosecution is ill-advised and unsustainable, the motive is to see Binayak Sen damned and, that he has not mortgaged his conscience to his party.

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  • Naxals set to release 5 abducted cops in Chhattisgarh on Feb 11

    Supriya Sharma & Mohua Chatterjee, TNN, Feb 9, 2011
    RAIPUR\NEW DELHI: A delegation of civil society activists is expected to travel to Chhattisgarh on Thursday to secure the release of five policemen held hostage by Maoists since January 25.

    The initiative comes following a telephonic conversation between Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh and social activist Swami Agnivesh on Tuesday. Swami Agnivesh had been contacted by Maoist leaders, who expressed their willingness to free the policemen in the presence of activists only if the security personnel stay away.

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  • Suspend search ops, will free cops: Maoists

    Express News Service,  Wed Feb 09 2011
    Raipur : Acting swiftly on the Maoists' proposal to release the five policemen held hostage for more than a fortnight, the Chhattisgarh government on Tuesday agreed to suspend search operations for 24 hours - a precondition set by the Maoists.

    "The government has agreed to suspend the search operations for 24 hours as the people involved in the negotiations requested the Chief Minister to agree to such a demand of the Maoists," said a government spokesman, hoping all the hostages would be freed safely within a couple of days.

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  • Maoism, Azad and Binayak Sen a hit at Kolkata Book Fair

    2011-02-06 05:30:00
    Kolkata: A slew of pro-ultra publications, on killed Maoist ideologue Azad and jailed activist Binayak Sen, sold like hot cakes in the two-week long Kolkata Book Fair that concluded on Sunday.

    Activists brought out booklets containing the writings of Azad alias Cherukuri Rajkumar, about jailed paediatrician-cum-rights activist Binayak Sen, and in support of the Maoist movement in the fair held at the Milan Mela ground.

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  • "Our Republic must not kill its own children" - Supreme Court on fake encounter killings of Maoists -

    by Stan Swamy

    The context: The Indian Govt believes in gun, money, bureaucrats, corporates. It does not believe in people and their institutions of self-governance, self-empowerment

    Of late the Indian Govt is speaking a strange language. It only speaks in terms of the money it is allocating (1) for the maintenance of the vast number of troops stationed in the naxal-affected districts of central India (Rs. 724 crores for the year 2010 - 11); (2) for the so-called Integrated Action Plan (IAP) for selected Tribal & Backward Districts to be implemented by the DC, SP, DFO of the respective districts (Rs. 3,300 crores for 2010-11). No one is supposed to ask unwarranted questions such as how qualified, equipped are these officials to undertake rural development work.

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  • PRESS RELEASE (31 January 2011): Scandalous Decision of Jairam Ramesh to OK POSCO project

    POSCO PRATIRODH SANGRAM SAMITI

    Dhinkia, Nuagaon, Gadkujang; Jagatsinghpur District, Orissa

    Environment Minister disregards findings of his own Review and Statutory Clearances Committees

    The decision of Indian Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh to give a comprehensive OK to the POSCO India Steel-Power Production-Captive Port project, based on some additional conditions, is nothing short of a total sell out to the politics of power and international capital. In a climate where each and every Minister of the Union Government is tumbling over with scandals, Ramesh had stood tall taking one brave legally and ethically correct decision after another. An acid test for him to continue this streak of decision making in the wider public interest, keeping in view intergenerational interests as well, was about the POSCO project. By his decision today to clear the project Ramesh has failed not only his own legacy, but has attacked the very rule of law based decision making that he has so often been harping on to be the basis of his functioning.

    It is well known that the POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samithi, a peaceful movement of affected communities, has been systematically raising the deep, inter-generational and irreversible impacts of allowing this massive project to come up in the ecologically sensitive Jagatsinghpur district of Orissa.

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  • Civil Rights Organizations Denounce Government Attempt to Vilify Them for Opposing Operation Green Hunt

    Dellhi Police produced its charge sheet against Mr Kobad Ghandy in the Tees Hazari Courts New Delhi on 18.02.2010. This document has baselessly alleged unlawful activities against a number of individuals and legitimate democratic organisations working in the public domain. These include Dr. Darshan Pal of the People's Democratic Front of India (PDFI), Mr. GN Saibaba, a professor with Delhi University, Mr. Rona Wilson, Secretary of the Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP), Mr. Gautam Navlakha of the People's Union for Democratic Rights (PUDR), PUDR itself, the People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), the Democratic Students' Union (DSU), Revolutionary Democratic Front (RDF), the PDFI, the Indian Association of People's Lawyers (IAPL), Anti-displacement Front (ADF) and the Association for Protection of Democratic Rights (APDR; wrongly named in the chargesheet as the Association of Peoples For Democratic Rights).

    APDR, PUDR and PUCL in particular have been solely concerned with safeguarding democratic and civil rights in India for over 30 years, and are internationally reputed for their rigorous and scrupulous approach to these issues. Among the charges against these established and respected organisations, is the completely unfounded one that they are playing "a very important role to broaden the base of the [CPI (Maoist)] outfit". The chargesheet has provided no evidence whatsoever to substantiate its allegations.

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  • Lalgarh: PUDR Statement on Murder of PCPA Leader Lalmohan Tudu

    People’s Union for Democratic Rights strongly condemns the cold blooded murder of Lalmohan Tudu, leader of People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities by the Central Reserve Paramilitary Forces on February 23, 2010 at Kantapahari near Lalgarh. It has been reported that Lalmohan Tudu was killed in an ‘encounter’ along with his relatives Yuvraj and Suchitra.

    The IG CRPF, Nageshwar Rao condoned the killing claiming that they were Maoists killed in exchange of fire. But other accounts claim that as he was at his house to meet his younger daughter, CRPF personnel called him out along with his relatives and shot them dead in front of his wife, daughter and mother. His body was then dragged to the nearby fields.

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  • Civil Rights Organisations Say Delhi Police is Targeting Them

    New Delhi:The civil rights organisations, which were named by the Delhi Police in its chargesheet against top Maoist leader Kobad Ghandy, today claimed that they were being targeted for protesting against "undemocratic practices" and threatened to move court. Asking the Delhi Police to withdraw the names from the charge sheet running into over 800 pages, right activists argued that no evidence has been provided whatsoever to substantiate the allegations.

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  • Operation Greenbacks Cartoon

  • CRPP Condemns the Disinformation Campaign against Rights Activists

    By the Campaign for the Release of Political Prisoners

    Expose the vilification campaign of the Investigating agencies-a calculated assault on the democratic rights of political prisoners and all those who defend them!

    In the Charge Sheet filed on Mr. Kobad Ghandy by the Special Cell of the Delhi Police before the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Delhi, on the 19-02-10 wild accusations are made about the activities of the Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP) as an organisation to further the cause of the CPI (Maoist).

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  • Cops Claim the Offensive with Killing of PCAPA Leader

    The killing of Lalmohan Tudu, the president of the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA), at Katapahari in Lalgarh is being not only seen as a body blow to the Maoist-linked organisation but also signals a clear shift in the strategy of the security forces after the Silda attack.
    The forces fighting the Maoist rebels have switched to “offensive aggression” from the earlier softer, cautious approach, according to officials. Though the CRPF claimed Tudu’s was an encounter death, state police officers told The Indian Express that the PCPA leader and two others were tracked down through cellphone intercepts on Monday night and gunned down. The aim is to dismantle the PCAPA, which has worked in tandem with the Maoists.
    From the cellphone intercepts, a CRPF unit in Lalgarh got the lead that Tudu was returning home to see his daughter, who is to appear for the Madhamik examination. Tudu was accompanied by two others — Yuvraj Murmu and Suchitra Murmu — both said to be Maoists. Only Tudu’s body could be recovered.
    (Indian Express, February 25, 2010)
  • Gujarat: 5500 Farmers Detained for Protesting Land Grab

    Over five thousand farmers from the Mahuva area in the Bhavnagar district of Gujarat have been detained and prohibited from taking out a peaceful rally protesting the government's sanction for a Nirma factory and limestone quarry in their area. Chunibhai Vaidya, a veteran Gandhian who founded Gujarat Loksamiti, Kanubhai Kalsaria, MLA of Mahuva, and Sanatbhai Mehta, ex Finance Minister of Gujarat, Ilaben Pathak of AWAG and a senior editor Prakash N Shah are among those detained by the police in this illegal suppression of collective democratic rights.

    The farmers were enroute to the Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad, from where they intended to start a peaceful march to Gandhinagar to submit their petition, signed by 11,111 affected individuals in their own blood, when the 25 buses they were using were stopped by the police. The farmers have been taken to Shahibagh in Ahmedabad and have been detained in police grounds. Several hundred protestors who reached the Sabarmati Ashram directly were also whisked away in police vans and blocked from taking out the march.

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  • Government Must Engage Maoists in Talks

    Saroj Giri

    With Maoist leader Kishenji's rather bold offer for ceasefire to the Union government, a new situation seems to be unfolding in the red corridor of heartland India. Seeking to place the ball in the Centre's court, the 72-day offer clearly seems to trump Union Home Minister P Chidambaram's 72-hour offer. Moreover, it's the nature of the offer - unconditional, as opposed to earlier Maoist proposals stipulating the release of their key leaders, restoration of land and forests to the tribals, scrapping of Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with big investors etc, all major irritants for the government - which begs a serious consideration.

    Practically the only condition set by the Maoists this time is that the State should reciprocate. This is at a time when reports of the CRPF in Lalgarh killing Lalmohan Tudu of the People's Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) in front of his family members on February 22 are filtering in, over and above the initial propaganda about him being killed during an attack on a CRPF camp.

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  • Labelled as Naxals for Being Vidarbha Supporters?

    Amidst frequent police alerts that Naxal groups are trying to make inroads in the separate Vidarbha statehood movement, two activists supporting the movement were arrested by Chandrapur police last week for suspected Naxal links.

    However, their arrest raises questions as to whether they were real Naxal supporters or are being punished for supporting the statehood cause.

    Bandu Meshram, a tailor from Ramtek was arrested in Nagpur and soon after, Ramkumar Akkapalli alias Masram, an autorickshaw driver was also arrested. The Chandrapur police have claimed that incriminating Naxal literature was seized from both.

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  • Kolkata: 2000 Protest against War Orchestration of Chidambaram and Chief Ministers

    The citizens of West Bengal again came out on the streets, braving state repression, to loudly declare that they will not allow P Chidambaram and the chief ministers to plot their genocidal plans in the heart of the city.

    Around 2000 people participated in a lively and militant march from College Square to the Metro Channel. Many organizations such as MKP, IFTU, APDR, Bandi Mukti Committee, SEZ-Birodhi Prachar Mancha, Lalgarh Mancha, Samrajyabadbirodhi Mancha, various students' organizations and numerous individuals participated.

    Also participating was a large contingent of the people from Nonadanga, who have been evicted there from the slums, and who identify their eviction with the eviction of adivasis from their land and resources.

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  • Maoist 'Melting Pot' Worries Government

    Sankarshan Thakur

    New Delhi: Armed Naxalites could resort to an absence offensive in response to the first security thrust into their strongholds. Intelligence inputs reaching here from parts of Chhattisgarh, Orissa and Jharkhand suggest that large numbers of cadres may leave their jungle bases and "melt away into urban anonymity" over the next few weeks as part of a thought-out tactic.

    “It makes good sense for them,” said a senior intelligence official based here. “They don’t have the firepower the government is in the process of employing. By vanishing initially, they will not only escape a full-blown assault, they will also be able to draw security forces deeper into their habitat and trap them in a long-drawn guerrilla conflict.”

    Freed of election vigil, more than a dozen paramilitary battalions comprising the BSF, the CRPF and the ITBP are moving into Naxalite-dominated areas in preparation for an integrated offensive christened Operation Green Hunt. But reports that the Naxalites will dissolve their jungle concentrations and slip away are worrying security strategists. “We may actually face little or no opposition in the first flush,” said one. “But that also means we will get no catch. Rather, they will retain the advantage of when and where to confront us.”

    Most Naxalite units have pack-and-carry mobility and possess rat-like familiarity with the forests they hold. Other than the Abujmadh jungles along the junction of Bastar in southern Chhattisgarh and Orissa’s Malkangiri district, Naxalites are not known to have “permanent” bases anywhere; most officers familiar with their ways are convinced of their ability to “vaporise at short notice”.

    The Abujmadh base, said to be located in near-impenetrable wooded hills, will be tougher to put a lid on or dismantle, but then security forces have never been able to so much as approach Abujmadh.

    Not that Naxalites in other parts have been easy to net. As one Intelligence Bureau (IB) officer put it: “They will probably leave behind trails of where they cooked or camped, but beyond the few known faces, they are tough to trace because they are like everybody else, they just mingle, very tough to separate from locals who, for various reasons, usually offer very little help.”

    The officer went on to articulate fears of “substantive collateral damage” if the Naxalites are able to “frustrate” security operations with their disappearing act. “Very often, because of poor on-ground intelligence, the forces conduct harsh search operations,” he said, “innocents get trampled upon and disaffection spreads, things turn counter-productive. Some of that has happened in Lalgarh where the security forces met with little armed resistance because the cadres slipped out. But in the process, locals got hurt and they remain almost violently opposed to the security forces and the state itself.”

    It is with an eye on restricting the movement of Naxalites in the run-up to the security build-up that special emphasis is being given to border regions between affected states. The idea, officials say, is to allow security forces to operate “free of and above jurisdictional constraints” and allow real-time cross-border monitoring along a single chain of command.

    “That is the main reason why we are concentrating the paramilitary forces, rather than the state police, along the borders so that there is no confusion of jurisdiction and command. Also paramilitary forces have the freedom to conduct search and pursuit operations across state borders,” a senior officer said. He conceded, though, that paramilitary forces have another set of handicaps flowing from their lack of familiarity with local people, language, customs and terrain.

    A CRPF officer The Telegraph spoke to last week had said of his Chhattisgarh experience: “It is one thing to be better armed and supplied, but that can add up to little if your jawans do not know left from right. Many of my chaps are just too lost in the Chhattisgarh jungles because they know next to nothing about the place.”

    Despite the rockjawed determination of Union home minister P. Chidambaram to forge ahead with the anti-Naxalite offensive, a fair section of officials and experts remains sceptical about its success for a variety of reasons.

    The manner in which the offensive has been propagandised by North Block is becoming a serious concern. “You do not launch such operations with public declarations that almost sound like war cries,” said a Chhattisgarh police officer. “They are calling it a psychological offensive, but what this daily bugling from Delhi has done is to put the pressure on us. A huge sense of public expectation has built up and if we don’t achieve tangible results quickly, we will be the losers of that so-called psychological offensive.”

    Top cop K.P.S. Gill, who was adviser to the Chhattisgarh government on anti-Naxalite operations for a while, has also criticised the manner in which Chidambaram is marshalling the offensive.

    “Such operations have to be conducted on the ground, with local police and local people, you cannot win such battles by making plans in Delhi boardrooms because reality is ever-changing and strategy needs to be tailored accordingly,” Gill has said.

    Other security experts have questioned the very preparedness of the security forces — men, machines and intelligence — to take the Naxalites head on at this juncture. Most of them have been counselling a more gradualist approach, beginning with a quantum increase in the number of boots on the ground. At the moment, even in the government’s reckoning, the jawan-to-population ratio is far below the recommended minimum.

    The Telegraph, October 19, 2009

  • Press Statement - Government Should Respond to Maoist Offer

    We welcome the announcement by the CPI (Maoist) to observe a ceasefire and enter into talks with the Government of India. Given the government's expressed willingness to engage in talks, we hope that this offer will be reciprocated. This necessarily requires a halt to all paramilitary armed offensive operations (commonly known as Operation Green Hunt) immediately. It is also imperative that there should be complete cessation of all hostilities by both sides during the currency of the talks.

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  • Orissa: Cops in Trouble over Rebel Arrest

    Cuttack, Feb. 23: The police, who arrested Subhashree, the wife of top Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda in Bhubaneswar five weeks ago and claimed it a prize catch, are now in the docks on charges of violating provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) and Supreme Court guidelines.

    It follows allegations of arresting the 33-year-old woman after sunset in the absence of a magistrate and leaving behind her nine-year-old daughter helpless, not allowing her to contact her relatives and lawyer and her remand in police custody beyond the stipulated 15 days.

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  • Lalgarh: PCPA Leader Lalmohon Tudu Murdered by Paramilitaries

    Nisha Biswas

    ( CGNet Moderators Note:  We can not confirm the content of this note below from Nisha Biswas. We tried to check it with some local journalists who told us that they have also heard similar versions from the locals. They said that according to locals there was no exchange of fire, only search operation was carried out last night. And when they heard this morning that Lalmohan Tudu is dead in an 'attempted attack on joint force camp', they were surprised. The journalists also added that Mr Tudu is quite aged and not capable of carrying arms and attacking a camp.)

    We all know how good our police is in making stories and killing innocents in the name of encounter. The West Bengal Police is no exception. There was no exchange of fire at Kantapahari as claimed by police. The fact
    is that the Joint security forces entered the house of Sri Lalmohan Tudu, President PCPA (People's Committee against Police Atrocities) around 11hrs in night, while he was preparing to go to bed.

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  • Lalgarh: Police Voice Support for Shoot-on-Sight Strategy

    Kantapahari (West Midnapore), Feb. 23: Police say People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities president Lalmohan Tudu died when they retaliated against a Maoist attack on their camp here.

    The committee, and Tudu’s neighbours, insist he was killed in a “fake encounter” at Narcha village, 3km from the Kantapahari camp.

    If what the villagers say is true and the indications from a section of the police are co-rrect, the crackdown against Maoists is set to see a new strategy emerge from the debris of the Shilda EFR camp, where 24 policemen were massacred by the guerrillas last Monday.

    “The brutal attack at Shilda has firmed up our resolve to strike in equal measure against the Maoists,” a police officer said. “The instruction we have been given is to go for the kill instead of trying to make an arrest if we sense any danger whatsoever.”

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  • Uttar Pradesh: Court Says No Proof to Detain Seema Azad

    The Uttar Pradesh Police received a setback on Saturday when they failed to submit any evidence in court against Seema Azad, the state secretary of People's Union for Civil Liberty (PUCL) and her husband Vishwavijay Azad.

    The Special Task Force had arrested Seema and Vishwavijay on February 8 in Allahabad. They were booked under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for their alleged links with a banned Maoist organisation.

    Judicial Magistrate Vikas Kumar rejected the application of the Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) seeking a week's remand for Seema and Vishwavijay. Dismissing the application, the judged observed that the police have not come up with any concrete evidence against them. "There was no need to accept the request for police remand of the accused and the police did not mention any concrete ground for the remand," the court observed.

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  • Supreme Court Slams Government for Raising Naxal Bogey

    The Supreme Court on Monday slammed the Chattisgarh government for raising the "bogey" of Naxalism to discredit those raising issues of human rights violations even as the Centre said it has evolved a Rs 7,300 crore package to develop Naxal-affected regions of the country.

    The apex court also expressed displeasure at the Chattisgarh government's decision to exhume bodies of 10 tribals allegedly killed by the local police in a village of Dantewada district for fresh post-mortem without its permission.

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  • Police Killed Villagers, Say Gompad Witnesses

    Aman Sethi

    A charred wooden stake and three graves are all that remain of the Madavi family in this remote village in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada district.

    "Madavi Kanni was lying face down in front of the burnt house," said an eyewitness. "She had been slashed with a sword and shot in the chest." The bodies of her father, Madavi Bajar, her mother Madavi Subbhi and her 12-year-old sister Madavi Mutti, were found under a tree, 50 metres away.

    Testimonies collected by The Hindu from Gompad allege that a composite force of Adivasi special police officers and security force regulars appeared on the outskirts of the village in the early hours of October 1, 2009. "We ran away when we saw the force," said the witness, speaking on condition of anonymity. "We found the bodies when we returned."

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  • Member of Parliament to Protest at Lok Sabha Gates

    KOLKATA: First, he circulated CDs with songs in support of Chhatradhar Mahato. Now, Trinamool Congress MP Kabir Suman is set to launch a satyagraha protesting the proposed Operation Green Hunt in Parliament. The session starts on Monday.

    The MP from Jadavpur will also write to the PM, home minister P Chidambaram and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee about his "findings on Jangalmahal" and about the plight of tribals in all Maoist-affected areas of Jharkhand, Orissa and Bihar.

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  • Lalgarh Waits for Development Benefits

    KOLKATA: In July last year, nine top officers of the Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee government were sent to Lalgarh, Kantapahari, Pirakata and Binpur all in West Midnapore to find out what the locals were most concerned about.

    At the spot, they doled out largesse such as ration and BPL cards. Later, a Rs 400-crore package was announced for Lalgarh and surrounding areas. The nine-member team comprising officers of the secretary rank headed by the then backward classes welfare secretary, R D Meena was sent to the remotest areas and came up with a report. A second batch went there to prepare a detailed report.

    But now, seven months later, no one in the administration seems to know what has been done to ensure development of the region.

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  • Democracy or Demon-cracy in Orissa's Koraput

    Report by K. Sudhakar Patnaik; Koraput (Odisha): Mr. Baria Buti aged about 45 years S/o Baria Dulaba village Patraput of Kumbhari Panchayat under Narayanpatna police station confined in Koraput Jail after 20th November Police firing at Narayanpatna. Mr. Baria Buti belonging to tribal community is blind, police also equally blind who initiated cases against him of snatching arms from the police station and waging war against the Government. Surprisingly the tribal blind man not even seen the arms, so question of attempting to loot arms practically not possible the Advocate Nihar Ranjan Pattnaik opined. The movement of Mr. Baria inside the jail requires the assistance of another man and even out side the jail too. So it makes no difference for him in or outside the jail. The police initiated another case of attempt to murder, arson and looting. It is what the democracy prevailing under Narayanpatna Block in Koraput district.

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  • Chhattisgarh Presents 6 of 12 Missing Tribals Before Apex Court

    The Supreme Court Monday directed a Delhi district judge to record the statements of the six Chhattisgarh tribals presented by the state government in accordance with the order last week to locate 12 missing persons.

    A bench of Justices B. Sudershan Reddy and S.S. Nijjar had last Monday directed the Chhattisgarh government to produce before it 12 people - missing after moving the court for a probe into the alleged killings of over 12 villagers by security forces in Dantewada as a part of the anti-Maoist operation.

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  • PCAPA Releases List of 44 Murdered by Paramilitaries and Police

    Calcutta: The People's Committee Against Police Atrocities has come up with a list claiming that 44 of its supporters have been killed in the past year either in fake encounters by security forces or in attacks by armed CPM cadres in and around Lalgarh.In a four-page booklet, the committee names the dead and mentions their age, address and dates of their "murders".

    West Midnapore police chief Manoj Verma said at least 10 of those mentioned were "hardcore Maoists". "Most of the others are wanted Maoists, but we don't know whether they are dead because we have not seen their bodies."

    The committee alleged that Aswini Mahato, 33, was in his paddy field in Salboni on November 28 when he was killed. On January 2, the forces allegedly fired at a rally, injured a trio, tied them to a jeep and dragged them to death.

    (The Telegraph, 12 February 2010)


     

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  • Police Yet to Chalk Out Strategy against Maoists

    RANCHI: More than 48 hours after Union home minister P. Chidambaram convened a meeting in Kolkata on how to deal with the Maoists in the four states of Jharkhand, Bihar, West Bengal and Orissa, the state police are yet to hold a meeting to thrash out strategies on the proposed Operation Green Hunt.

    A serving SP admitted that police have stopped arresting top Maoist leaders despite intelligence inputs on their whereabouts. "Though we do not have written orders, the political bosses appear to be in their favour, thus making the forces reluctant to go all out against the Reds," he said.

    The overall scenario on the proposed Green hunt is paradoxical. On the one hand, police are claiming that the offensive is exclusively its prerogative in which the administration has little role to play. Again, on the other, officials of the same department prefer to use the word "campaign" instead of "operation" to restore civil administration in areas where the Reds have been running a parallel administration.

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  • West Bengal: Red Front Ready to Talk to Trinamool

    Snigdhendu Bhattacharya

    A Maoist-backed organisation in Bengal has offered to discuss peace and development with the Trinamool Congress, which is part of the UPA at the Centre. But it wants to talk to Trinamool MP Kabir Suman only.

    "We appealed to Suman because no one else in the Trinamool Congress seemed to be trustworthy," Asit Mahato of the People's Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) told HT on the phone.

    The PCAPA spearheaded an agitation against an operation to flush out Maoists in the Lalgarh area of West Midnapore district in the latter half of last year.

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  • Wrongly Arrested for Being a Maoist

    Jaideep Deogharia

    RANCHI: The People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), which investigated into the allegations of arrested Maoist Jeetan Marandi's wife that her husband was innocent, has found that the arrest could be a case of mistaken identity.

    Marandi was arrested in Karando village of Peertanr block of Giridih on April 5, 2008, for being a notorious member of the banned CPI(Maoists). Marandi has been in Giridih Jail since then. In December last year, his wife Aparna Hansda, had appealed before the state committee of the Jharkhand unit of PUCL urging it to take up the matter.

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  • Tamil Nadu Campaign: Public Meeting, Chennai, 20 February

    The Indian State has declared a civil war called 'Operation Green Hunt' to crush the Maoists and the Naxalbari movement. This battlefield spreads beyond the jungles of Dandakaranya. The forms of the war may change with respect to the place, but the aim of the war is the same-To Recolonize the Country to serve the interests of MNCs and Imperialists. It's an outright lie that the war is being waged only because Maoists are undertaking an armed struggle. People are seething in anger with the numerous recolonization onslaughts. The state understands this fact and also knows that only Naxalites have the ability and courage to ignite the spark among the masses.

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  • Bengal-Jharkhand-Orissa Maoist Crackdown on Government Radar

    Calcutta: Union home minister P. Chidambaram today indicated that inter-state security operations against Maoists would be launched in Bengal, Jharkhand and Orissa soon.

    "We reviewed the progress of the intra-state and inter-state operations and found that there has been significant work (done) in this regard. We also discussed inter-state operations between Bengal and Jharkhand and Bengal and Orissa. We have taken certain decisions about these joint operations that will be implemented after I return to Delhi," Chidambaram said after an 80-minute meeting with chief ministers, deputy chief ministers and senior officials of Bengal, Orissa, Jharkhand and Bihar at Writers' Buildings.

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  • Chidambaram Claims Progress is Being Made in Tackling Maoist Rebels

    India says it is making progress in a massive offensive launched to stem a Maoist rebellion.  The Maoists, who have entrenched themselves in several parts of the country, are the biggest internal security threat confronting India.   
    Home Minister P. Chidambaram says several key Maoist leaders have been detained since thousands of security troops launched a coordinated operation against the rebels in five states worst affected by violence.  

    In these five states - West Bengal, Jharkhand, Orissa, Chattisgarh and Maharashtra - the rebels have established a strong presence in remote, rural areas.  Chidambaram said progress in the anti-Maoist offensive has ben "steady but show."

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  • Against Green Hunt: All India Protest on 22nd February

    Committee of Democractic Rights Organisations, which consists of several democratic rights organisations viz PUDR, APCLC, MASS, Loksahi Hak Sangathan, NPMHR, APDR,PUCL Jharkhand etc,  has decided to hold ALL INDIA PROTEST DAY on 22nd of February (The day when the Budget Session of Parliament starts) against OPERATION GREEN HUNT and STATE SPONSORED ATTACK ON RIGHTS ORGANISATIONS across the country. Every state will arrange different programmes as per their schedule to mark this protest day. Please do the needful to make this PROTEST DAY a great success.

    Co-ordinators

    Kranthi Chaitanya, APCLC
    Ningreichon, NPMHR
    Asish Gupta, PUDR

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  • PUCL - Seema Azad is a Human Rights Worker

    Letter to the National Human Rights Commission, New Delhi

    We want to acknowledge you that Seema Azad, journalist, human rights worker and executive member of People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), her husband former student leader Vishwavijay, and friend Asha, were detained by the police on Allahabad Railway Junction without any proper reason on Saturday(6th Feb 2010).  Both of them were returning from World Book Fair, New Delhi by the Reewanchal Express.  According to police they all are Naxalite.

    Sir, the organization wants to highlight the background of detention.  PUCL has continuously raised the voice against the atrocity done by the police-Bahubalies nexus in kachhari region of Allahabad and Kausambi district on the sand mining labours.  Due to the pressure of politician and Bahubalies, DIG of Allahabad has framed many fraud cases against the labour movement leader.  DIG had banned the 'Lal Salam' cited it as against the nationality.  PUCL had condemned the ban saying that it was natural address of Communist party.  According to PUCL 'Lal Salam' is a common address of labourer across the world.

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  • Threat of Attack on Anti-POSCO Movement Grows

    As many of you are aware, the Korean Steel giant, POSCO (Pohang Steel) is touted to be moving forward with its plans building a steel mill in Jagatsingpura in north-east Orissa. The mill also involves mining at Keonjhar and a new port just north of Paradip.

    In all, over 30 villages are targets for forced displacement and have been in continuous protest in one form or the other for the last two years or more under the leadership of the POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samiti. Currently the govt of Orissa has issued a Feb 10th deadline on filing for compensation and there has been a rapid build of police forces over the last 48 hours.

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  • Uttar Pradesh: Civil Liberties Activists Arrested

    News has just come that Seema Azad, editor of  the left-wing journal DASTAK published from Allahabad was taken into custody by the police yesterday 6th February, soon after she alighted from the train on her return from the Book Fair at Delhi. She along her husband and left-wing activist Vishwa Vijaya have been detained at the Khuldabad Police Station.

    A large number of  intellectuals as well as social activists are protesting against this police action. It is to  be noted that this action comes soon after Seema Azad published a collection of articles criticizing the government for its Operation Greenhunt. The booklet contains articles by noted authors and media-persons such as Arundhati Roy, Himanshu Kumar, Anil Chamaria, Punya Prasoon Vajpeyi, Sunita Narayan and others. Details of the charges leveled against Seema Azad and Vishva Vijaya are awaited.

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  • Observe BLACK DAY on 9/02 in Kolkata

    The combined forces are firing on peaceful masses. People are dying. Children don't go to school. They are hungry. Schools are police camps. All with taxpayer's money. Asim Dasgupta allots 30 crs to combined forces. Our money kills  the poor .  Chidambaram will meet Buddha.to kill more. Everyone protest. Observe BLACK DAY on February 9.
    All come to rally at College Square at 11.30 a.m. Bring placards and posters, not organizational banners.

    Mahasweta Devi


  • Guns, Gags and Lies in a War that No One Sees

    Javed Iqbal

    Aaj kal bandook se zaada khatra laptop mein hai. (In today's world, the laptop is a lot more dangerous than the gun)," the thaanedaar of Dornapal camp in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada district says, checking my bags on one of my visits to the war zone. He knows the war against the Maoists is not being fought by guns alone. The greatest weapon, which both sides utilise well, is silence and misinformation. And what if there's no information or just selected bits released now and then?

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  • No Access to Judiciary or Media in Chhattisgarh

    Javed Iqbal

    Operation Green Hunt, launched last November, was supposed to provide  security from the Maoists, but security for whom? It is unlikely to be the tribals who live in the jungles of Chhattisgarh. They have suffered the attentions of the authorities for years. Equally, they also have to deal with the Maoists on their ground.

    At the same time, there's no one to listen to them. They don't have access to the judiciary or the press. If they complain, they risk harassment and torture. If they persist, they might simply disappear. For mainstream India it's as if they don't exist. The following stories illustrate their plight.

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  • Ground Zero at the Anti-POSCO Struggle

    Dilip Bisoi

    From Bhubaneswar, it takes us five hours to reach Patna village, at the heart of Posco-India's planned 12-million tonne steel plant. We find children playing with pebbles, but they aren't at an innocuous game-they arrange tiny stones across the road when they see an approaching vehicle, imitating elders who routinely put up road blockades or gates to prevent entry of unknown vehicles. Patna falls within the core area of the proposed 4,004 acre plant site, and villagers, who are against the project, keep round-the-clock vigil on the movement of outsiders.

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  • Swapan Dasgupta --first victim of UAPA in West Bengal

    Amit Bhattacharyya

    Swapan Dasgupta, the editor of Bangla People's March, published from Kolkata, died in jail custody as the first political prisoner to die as a UAPA/Unlawful Activities Prevention (Amended) Act of 2008 prisoner. He breathed his last on 2 February 2010 in the ITU, Mackenjee ward of SSKM hospital, Kolkata as a result of physical and mental torture in the police lock-up since his arrest on 6 October 2009 and utter negligence on the part of the government to give him proper medical treatment both inside Presidency Jail, Kolkata as also in the SSKM hospital.

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  • February 11th Delhi Seminar Against Operation Green Hunt: Displacement and Genocide of Tribals

    Campaign Against War on People, Delhi University
    is going to organise a seminar on
    Operation Green Hunt: Displacement and Genocide of Tribals
    11th February; Room No. 56, Arts Faculty, DU; 11a.m.-3p.m.

     

    Speakers:

    Amit Bhaduri (JNU)

    Sudha Bharadwaj (Chhattisgarh Mukti Morcha)

    Venuh (NPMHR),

    Tridib Ghosh (PUCL, Jharkhand)

    Kumar Hassan (writer, Orissa)

     

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  • February 5 Protest Actions in Front of Indian Embassies in Europe

    Today with the initiative of ATIK (Confederation of Workers from Turkey in Europe) protest actions in front of the Indian Embassies were held in various cities in Europe. These include Den Haag, London, Vienna, Bern, Berlin and Frankfurt. The protests were held to condemn the "Operation Green Hunt" which was first launched in November 2009 by the Indian state against the people in the heartland of India. Until now, there have been few reports in the international media reporting about the extensive violations of the most fundamental human rights in India.

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  • Condemn the Arrest of Veteran Revolutionary Leader Gananath Patra

    The leaders of mass movements and democratic political organizations condemned today the shocking incident of undemocratic arrest and possible torture of veteran Marxist leader Com Gananath Patra by the State police in Bhubaneswar on 27 January 2010. Com Gananath Patra has been in the forefront of the anti-displacement struggles throughout the state. He is one person who was able to articulate the issues related to rapid industrialization quite well and could share this with masses in a convincing manner. Be it Baliapal or Kalinganagar or Narayanpatna he supported the struggles without any hesitation and as a true revolutionary always wanted to be with the victims of injustice. He supported Nachika Linga and the Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh when he realized that these liberated bonded laborers were fighting against the liquor Mafia, land grabbers and tried to get justice for the victimized tribals.

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  • India's Farm Suicides: A 12-Year Saga

    P. Sainath

    The loan waiver year of 2008 saw 16,196 farm suicides in the country, according to the National Crime Records Bureau. Compared to 2007, that's a fall of just 436. As economist Professor K. Nagaraj who has worked in depth on farm suicide data says, "the numbers leave little room for comfort and none at all for self-congratulation." There were no major changes in the trend that set in from the late 1990s and worsened after 2002. The dismal truth is that very high numbers of farm suicides still occur within a fast decreasing farm population.

    Between just the Census of 1991 and that of 2001, nearly 8 million cultivators quit farming. A year from now, the 2011 Census will tell us how many more quit in this decade. It is not likely to be less. It could even dwarf that 8 million figure as the exodus from farming probably intensified after 2001.

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  • Chhattisgarh Attracts Investments Worth Rs 4,000 bn

     

    RAIPUR: Chhattisgarh, which came into existence in 2000, has received Rs 4 lakh crore (Rs 4,000 billion) investment from core industries alone,the state's Chief Secretary P Joy Oommen said on Thursday.

    The state will also create three mega-industrial parks to attract fresh investment proposals, Oommen said while inaugurating a conference on minerals and metals, organised by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham).  "The state will ensure zero power cut for investors and improve infrastructure, which is not only being strengthened but intensified in semi-urban and rural areas," he said. "The government will set up gems and jewellery, metal, herbal, IT and bio-technology parks and has invited investors."

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  • Swapan Dasgupta: First Fatal Victim of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act in WB

    MASUM PRESS RELEASE, February 3, 2010

    Swapan Dasgupta, becomes the first fatal victim of UAPA in West Bengal even before any trial, as he succumbs today (2nd February 2010) at about 5am to growing illness at SSKM Hospital, Kolkata. He was arrested under this Act on 06th October 2009 for publishing 'Peoples March' (in Bengali version), though the publication is still not banned. He was denied bail and detained under jail custody in appalling conditions. As he was a chronic asthma patient, distressing treatment at custody aggravated his illness. UAPA undoubtedly proves its cruel futurity.

    As we informed that the inquest was done by Mr. Swapan Kumar Ghosh, Additional Commissioner of Police (4), South Division, Kolkata Police under Bhowanipur Police Station Inquest number 141. This very act was a gross violation of criminal procedure code of India. The government of West Bengal purposefully violated the section 176 (1A) of Cr. P.C. where it is mandatory that in case of any custodial death, the inquiry should be made only by a judicial (Metropolitan) Magistrate.

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  • The Parallel War on Rights Activists

    Jyoti Punwani

    There are things I haven't forgotten about that October night 30 years ago, like the shock of discovering that my knees were shaking as the banging on the door grew louder. The voices, coarse and angry, were asking for P.V. Bhaktavatsalam, the lawyer who had dared to defend those charged with being Naxalites in a state obsessed with eliminating them. The parallels with modern-day Chhattisgarh couldn't be greater.

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