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Masses remain mere spectators amidst spurt in Maoist violence in several states

By Harsh Thakor* 

A series of violent incidents spurred by the CPI (Maoist) have come to light. A head constable of the Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) was killed by an explosive planted by Maoists in Gariaband, Chhattisgarh on the 17th of November. The head constable was escorting a team of electoral officials returning from the voting booths.
This action was part of the election boycott campaign led by the Communist Party of India (Maoist) in multiple federal States. In addition, a number of encounters were reported in Sukma, Narayanpur and Kanker districts of Chhattisgarh ahead of the elections. The election boycott campaign has created a severe jolt to the bankrupt system of the ruling classes. 
An improvised explosive device blast also killed a CRPF (Central Reserve Police Force) officer in the neighbouring Jharkhand, and injured two others on the 17th of November. The paramilitaries were carrying out an anti-Maoist operation in the forest of the West Singhbhum district of Jharkhand.
On the 16th of November it was reported that a police “informant” was executed by Maoists in Gadchiroli in the State of Maharashtra. The execution took place a day after the visit of Chief Minister of Maharashtra visited the area as part of government plan to crush the Maoist onslaught by patronising economic and social programmes rather than just military actions.
In a forest of the Kannur district of Kerala, an exchange of fire between Maoists and the Thunderbolt squad, a specialized unit of the Kerala police, occurred on the 13th of November. On the 22nd of November a constable of Bastar Fighter was injured after igniting an improvised explosive device (IED) Chhattisgarh’s Sukma district. Bastar Fighter was a “special force” of the old Indian State organised to crush the ongoing People’s War. The explosion took place during a “area-domination exercise” that was undertaken in order to construct a road.
Also on the 22nd of November, in the Narayanpur District of Chhattisgarh, District Reserve Guard soldier was n injured after being attacked with arrows by Maoists. On the 23rd of November a CRPF constable was injured by an IDE explosion in West Singhbhum district of Jharkhand.
On the 27th of November 14 vehicles and machines were set on fire by alleged Maoists at a road construction site in Chhattisgarh’s Dantewada district. 40 to 50 unidentified people, disguised as civilians and a few of them armed, reached the spot and set fire to 4 vehicles and machines, including trucks, poclain and earth moving machines.

PLGA celebration week

From the 2nd of December to 8th of December the People’s Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA) week took place. This week commemorates the anniversary of the PLGA, and during these dates, different actions were lodged. On the first day, on 2nd December, two Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) soldiers were injured from an improvised explosive device (IED), which exploded in the police station area of Barsur. The repressive forces, trying to minimize the effect of the PLGA actions, suspended the Narayanpur-Orchha bus route.
Maoists' actions do not root pose any threat to the social base of the ruling classes or dismantle the social system
Many posters were planted celebrating the 23rd anniversary of the PLGA. The banners highlighted the necessity of recruitment, support base extension and the consolidation of the PLGA. Also there was a warning to CRPF, saying that if their camp remains in the Kolhan forest area, the Maoists will continue to pose a threat. Following this threat, an 8 kg IED was set, but it did not explode.
On 6th of December it was reported that the guerrillas were paying tribute to their colleagues who perished during an ambush. Posters were hung up in the area of Kandhamal-Kalahandi-Boundh-Naragarh in which the people were encouraged to see the actions of the PLGA week and announced punitive actions against cannabis mafia.
In Balaghat district, pamphlets were printed by the CPI (Maoist) on the police excesses, particularly regarding the clashes resulting in the deaths of Jhamsing Dhurve and allegedly “Comrade Kamlu” and they thanked the people for exposing this case.
On 9th of December, a BJP-affiliate was killed in Chhattisgarh, in the district of Narayanpur, allegedly for his link to the iron ore mine. In total, during this year seven BJP-affiliates have been killed only in this State. On 24th of November, two people who worked for the iron ore mine JNIL were killed and another was injured by an IED explosion in the same district. 
The actions were allegedly done by the CPI (Maoist) due to its opposition to the mine. On 11th of December, two security personnel were injured due to an IED explosion. The patrolling was hired to provide security to the road construction work in Saltong village. In this village is located a CRPF camp to facilitate the construction of the road. On 12th of December, a District Reserve Guard jawan was injured due to an IED near the camp.
A soldier of the Chhattisgarh Armed Force was killed and another one was injured by an explosion of an IED planted by Maoists in the Narayanpur district of Chhattisgarh on the 13th of December. The explosion occurred in the Aamdai Ghati iron ore mine area, where the armed forces and the police were undertaking an operation to maintain control over the area. 
The next day, on the 14th of December, a Border Security Force (BSF) head constable was killed in Kanker district of Chhattisgarh in an IED explosion as well. On the 14th of December there also was a tussle between Maoists and the Special Operation Group (SOG) and district voluntary force (DVF) in Boudh, Odisha.
Cadres of the CPI (Maoist) organized a large-scale celebration along the border of Bijapur-Sukma districts in Chhattisgarh state marking People’s Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA) Week 2023. A video was released by Maoists to the media of the celebration. Mainly armed Maoists participated.
The armed actions by the Maoists have left the masses as spectators. People’s refused to buy the Maoists’ understand boycott the elections. Their actions do not root or pose any threat to the social base of the ruling classes, nor they dismantle the social system. Broad masses even refused to participate in protests against the alleged murder of Maoist cadres. Nor is there any effective fight for land distribution.
---
*Freelance journalist

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