Forces gear-up for bigger offensive against Maoists in Chhattisgarh

Shaken by the loss of 37 personnel in the ill-fated CRPF-driven operations during last couple of months at Sukma, the forces have launched AN intense operation against the left-wing extremists in the conflict zone of Bastar, south Chhattisgarh. As a part of renewed anti-Maoist strategy, the forces have geared-up to storm the Maoist strongholds, but they are equally being cautioned against dropping their guard and asked to strictly adhere to standard operating procedures in the virtual war zone.

The stage is set of aggressive and bigger strike against the Maoists. The military tactic also focuses on ensuring close coordination with the states adjoining the the region. The State police are carrying out the anti-Naxal operations jointly with the paramilitary forces under the supervision and leadership of top officials in Bastar. Senior security adviser of union home ministry K Vijay Kumar, special DG (anti-Maoist operation) D M Awasthi, IG CRPF DS Chouhan and other top officials are camping in Bastar.

According to sources, after Sukma the troopers would get offensive in different areas of Maoist stronghold across the five Maoist affected districts of Chhattisgarh. “The policy remains the same, target is the same but the strategy might change depending upon the circumstances. We have aggressively intensified our operations now.

There will be no let-up in area domination. The road construction works and road opening operations (ROP) will continue as we need to secure the area as nothing that hampers the movement of the forces will change”, the Bastar inspector general of police Vivekanand Sinha told the New Indian Express. Earlier the operations and movements of forces were largely restricted to ROP, area domination or acting on a tip-off about the presence of the Maoists in certain areas.

So, the ground assessment of the regions believed to be the epicentre of the Maoists activities were carried out where the operations have been considered as negligible. Now, each battalion has been given an area of responsibility depending upon the threat and the commandant is coordinating all tasks, a senior officer said. Chief Minister Raman Singh asserted that the final war against the Maoists has begun. “Now the battle will cease only after establishing the peace in the region.

But we are not going to drop bombs like the United States but will selectively target and hit the Naxalites”, he said.  The Opposition Congress however, blamed the government for the recent spate of attacks and said the Raman Singh regime hadn’t learnt from previous mistakes. The need was also felt for more combat training against guerrillas.

“The CRPF should revive its jungle warfare training to avoid casualties in the future”, a guerrilla warfare expert Brig (retired) B K Ponwar told the New Indian Express. Union home minister Rajnath Singh has convened a high level meeting of top officials from different states on May 8 in Delhi to review on strategies to take the anti-Maoist fight forward.

“We accept Sukma attack as a challenge. If required, we will revise the anti-Maoist strategy”, Singh said after paying tribute to the CRPF jawans in Raipur.






Source:- New Indian Express

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