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Maoists’ 'area of influence' declines but Chhattisgarh remains worst affected

The comprehensive crime statistics released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) also suggest the state continues as the hardest-hit by violence and crime unleashed by Maoists.

Published: 01st January 2021 12:08 PM  |   Last Updated: 01st January 2021 12:08 PM   |  A+A-

Maoists

For representational purposes (Photo | AFP)

Express News Service
RAIPUR: Chhattisgarh saw a consistent decline in areas cited as the stronghold of the outlawed CPI (Maoist), though the state still remains as the worst-hit as over half of the violent incidents in the country involving the Red brigade have been reported only in Bastar zone.
The comprehensive crime statistics released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) also suggest the state continues as the hardest-hit by violence and crime unleashed by Maoists.
With the reach and the cross district raids by the security forces continue, as many as 16 new base camps were set up in 2020 across the strategically chosen hypersensitive forested terrain of conflict zone in south Chhattisgarh. 

“Inspite of various challenges of Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown, the security forces could make decisive inroads into some of the erstwhile epicentre of Maoists. The area of influence of Maoists reduced to a great extent as the forces moved in to set up new posts. The rebels on backfoot are restricted to small pockets of affected districts. As many as 105 times we carried out the raids at naxal hideouts and engaged in exchange of fire with the red guerrillas,” said Sunderraj P, inspector general of police (Bastar Range).

This year the troopers recovered 40 bodies of the rebels killed in an encounter and arrested as many as 390 during the anti-Maoist operations. The forces lost 36 personnel in the gunfight with the ultras.
Maoists continued going after soft target and killed 44 civilians this year to create their reign of terror among the local tribals.
The rebels triggered 46 improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in 2020 while the forces detected 270 planted IEDs in Bastar zone and defused them. 
As many as 339 Maoists surrendered before the police. Bastar zone emerges as the common address of the top CPI (Maoist) leaders and their cadres.
“The location of every new security camps been judiciously planned to gain overall long term advantage to protect lives of civilians and acting as integrated developmental centres in the region besides on intervening militarily to restore peace and order”, the IG added.
The year saw result-oriented campaigns using the local tribal dialect as part of the community outreach programme  and psy-ops.
Among the successful counter propaganda campaign to expose the rebels included 'Bastar Tha Matta' (voice of Bastar), 'Lon Varatu' (return to your home/village).  
“The Maoists now feel threatened as the forces make inroads into their den. The new battalion and forces coming in should occupy the blank areas and establish their network like a gird system mutually supporting the security operation,” opined Brigadier (Rtd) B K Ponwar, the guerrilla warfare expert.
Maoist-related incidents

Descriptions

2017

2018

2019

2020

Exchange of fire

185

151

107

105

Maoist killed

69

112

65

40

Security personnel killed

59

56

21

36

Civilians killed

50

79

46

44

Maoist surrendered

368

464

310

339



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