Today our country is dealing with worst of the problem, the Naxal movement. It is dangerous and a serious problem. Encompassing Western Bengal, Orissa, Zharkand, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and Chhatisgarh is now at roving its footsteps in Maharashtra. Being the guardian Minister of Gadchiroli district it saddens me to with the thought of Naxalite movement’s prominence here.
Naxalite movement first originated from a small village ‘Naxalbari’ in Western Bengal under the leadership of Charu Mazumdar and Kanu Sanyal. It spread through the parts of Bengal. The fanatic followers of Karl Marx philosophy (those who believe in bullet not ballot) staged an ‘armed revolt’ against the system to protect the interests of the poor. They comprehended the fact that a handful of people armed with weapons can create terror among greedy landlords, take hostage a system which exploited the farmers and the poor disintegrating it completely. The Naxals were encouraged as their act could give justice to the poor. It found followers among the weak and underdeveloped class. Later on the government was successful in curbing this movement in West-Bengal.
A few years later Kondipalli Sitaramayya a small time farm hand rejuvenated this movement in Andhra Pradesh. In name of Marx fanaticism the movement spread through Pashupati (Nepal) to Tirupati (Andhra Pradesh). Let us not talk about the history of Naxal Movement. One thing is true now it has firmly roved its feet in Gondiya, Gadchiroli in Maharashtra. Both these regions are blessed with dense jungles. The Papermills, variety of minerals produced makes it resourceful and a rich district. Unfortunately in 60’s those who raised their voice against the Naxals (self-proclaimed) today those same people exploit the poor. The success of the followers of Mao in Nepal has boosted their confidence. The Naxalites in Bhandara, Chandrapur, Gondiya, Ballarpur and Gadchiroli are supplied with funds and weapons from Nepal and outside India. The movement is gaining momentum and so are the atrocities.
The Naxalites ensure that the Adivasis are cut off from basic facilities like education, electricity, roads, medicine and communication from the government. Even the government fear them. As I am the Guardian Minister of Gadchiroli I am going to talk about Maharashtra. When I travelled to the interiors of Gadchiroli I realised there was no electricity supply to 52 villages. People were disinterested and so was the government. I am grateful to Maharashtra’s Power Minister Hon. Shri. Ajitdada Pawar who immediately issued an order to supply electricity to these 52 villages.
Here I would like to share an experience with you when I was the Rural Development Minister. One day in the remote district of Nandurbar, Talathi, Teacher and Rural Worker were made to stand before the villagers and asked to identify who was who. The poor villagers failed to identify them. It means government, Communication technology and education is still not accessible in remote parts. Here the level of exploitation is terrible as the Naxalites do not allow the children to study. They fear if the children are educated the Naxalite movement would be bereft of youths for their armed section.
My brave police officers are struggling day and night so that they could provide the villagers with education, electricity, water and other basic necessities. The villagers are given protection and in doing so my officers have to sacrifice their lives. In the year 2009, 52 Police Officers and government servants had to lose their lives. The incident was painful.
In this area the water department, forest department, electricity or revenue machinery they all require police protection. Hence the Naxalites first target the Police. Hence hundreds of police fall prey to Naxal attack. No government system can reach to the interiors of these districts without proper police protection. There is a deep rooted fear in minds of people against the Naxals. The Naxals are angry on the police hence I want to strengthen the entire police department so that the Naxalite movement can be wiped out entirely from its root.
That doesn’t mean everything is smooth at Mantralaya level. The Naxals ambition is to reach all over Maharashtra and aim to spread its roots in India. Though I am laden with self-criticism here what I would like to say is answer to Naxalites arrogance is not in remote parts of Maharashtra alone and among the unconstructive people but it is also to be searched on the entire six floors of Mantralaya. If the six floors of Mantralaya fail to serve the downtrodden and work as welfare state the Naxals will derive their strength from this fact alone. But what troubles and saddens me is the police will die a worthless death.
If the rich and poor both are given equal justice by the government then we would be able to render the Naxalites handicap. But we have to show them the ‘police way.’ ‘Bullet for a bullet’ won’t work here as the problem will not be solved completely. Central Finance Minister P.Chidambaram has declared 528 crores to Maharashtra to effectively fight Naxalites. The funds should be utilised to make the police department self-sufficient, equipped with weapons and ‘fullproof.’ Every amount to the last drop should be used for the purpose. To increase the speed of development and refute bullet with bullet should be our only aim to raise a fight against Naxals. For bullet can’t be an answer for development. We have to make sure evry remote village in Maharashtra is self-sufficient then only we can strongly put up a fight against Naxalism. I firmly believe that we have to find our answers in Gadchiroli, Bhandara, chandrapur and on the six floors of Mantralaya and I am anxiously searching for them. In this endeavour I am supported by members in Ministry and my colleagues.
Time has come to build a bridge with Naxal affected regions in other states so that together we can destroy the Naxalite movement. But as Maharashtra tries to extend a helping hand the opposition Minister Chandrababu Naidu (President, Telegu Desam) is unnecessarily digging up hollow issues like water. At the same time Chief-Minister of Karnataka, Yediruppa of BJP is pursuing the Belgaon issue taking a staunch stand and the fanatics from ‘Kannad-Vedika’ organization are given a free hand. In all these chaos the Naxalite movement is side-lined and it pains me immensely.
I appeal to all these leaders to work towards the same goal that of destroying the monster named Naxalites and free the country from this self-destruction. But they are instead content with being arrogant and vague.
Naxalism is a complex social problem and as we fight against this anti-national forces we will be faced with many questions. But I hope to wipe off Naxalism from Maharashtra with Marathi skills and victorious spirit and I am confident I will do this.
I will convey you the reasons for my confidence in my next blogging…
Love and warm regards to my bloggers.