Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Bowing down to Naxals was a wrong precedent

By: Subhadeep Bhattacharjee

The serious consequence of going into a swap deal with the Maoist came back to haunt the government faster than the security forces and the administration would have expected. Less that a week after West Bengal government releases 22 Naxal sympathisers for the release of policeman Athindranath Dutta the Naxals with the support of tribals hijacked the Delhi bound Rajdhani Express in the dense forest area of Jhargram demanding the release of their leader Chattrodhar Mahato.

The trade done by the West Bengal government was uncalled for and now the consequences are here for us to see. It was quite absurd to hear the WB Chief Minister assure no further trades would take place after Athindranath case. The Government's bowing down in front of them gave a huge moral victory to the left wing extremists who may now regularly kidnap government officials to ask for the release of their comrades.

The Left Front Government in West Bengal is in dilemma about dealing with the Naxals. While Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee is firm on dealing it as a law and order problem many in his party want to approach it through socio economic means. Also the fact that Trinamool Congress is just interested in scoring political points instead of behaving as a responsible opposition is not helping the West Bengal Government.

Another major factor that Government seems to be ignoring is the ever increasing support base of the Naxals. The Rajdhani Express was hijacked by a few Naxals with the support of ordinary tribals. Now if this becomes a mass moment in the rural parts of the country it will bring down the administration to its knees. The government has to make every effort that the Naxals do not make it a mass moment with the support of the villagers across the dreaded Red Corridor which stretches from Andhra to Himachal.

The administration has to first cut the ground support that the Left wing terrorists have before taking them on. The government should stop bowing down to Naxal pressure in the near future and never get into a trade off deal with these extremists. The West Bengal government has to accept openly that it made a mistake by having a deal with the Naxals. No such deal should be allowed to take place in the future no mater what ever may be at stake.


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