Internal Security Trends and Incidents

In 2024, Maoists suffer severe setbacks in Chhattisgarh  


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Mains level: In 2024, Maoists suffer severe setbacks in Chhattisgarh

Why in the news?

As of July 9, 2024, India has recorded a total of 162 Maoist fatalities this year, with Chhattisgarh alone reporting 141 deaths.

  • This marks one of the highest casualty figures for extremists in the predominantly tribal state since the establishment of the Communist Party of India (Maoist) in 2004.


 About Left-wing extremism in India

  • Origins and Ideology: LWE in India began with the 1967 Naxalbari uprising in West Bengal, advocating armed revolution for a Maoist communist state overthrowing the Indian government.
  • Modus Operandi: Naxalites engage in guerrilla warfare, attacking security forces, extorting, intimidating, and propagandizing. They target government, infrastructure, and economic interests, and run parallel governance in controlled areas.
  • Red corridor Areas: LWE affects several states in central and eastern India, including Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, Bihar, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala, although to varying degrees.
  • Factors Contributing to LWE: Socio-economic disparities, land alienation and displacement of local communities, and issues related to Adivasi rights have contributed to the proliferation of LWE. Left-wing extremist groups have capitalized on these grievances to gain support among marginalized communities.
  • Government Response: The Government of India has taken various measures to counter LWE, including security operations, development initiatives, and rehabilitation programs. Violence related to LWE has decreased by 76% in 2022 compared to 2010, and the geographical spread of violence has also reduced.

In 2024, Maoists suffer severe setbacks in Chhattisgarh 

  • Maoist Casualties in Chhattisgarh: In 2024, Chhattisgarh reported the highest number of Maoist deaths (141) since the formation of the Communist Party of India (Maoist) in 2004. This spike coincided with the return of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to power in December 2023.
  • Historical Context and Operations: The year 2009 saw the highest number of Maoist deaths (154) following the launch of ‘Operation Green Hunt’ by the Indian government, which included military offensives involving the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and Chhattisgarh police.
  • Security Forces and Civilian Casualties: While Maoist casualties have increased recently, the number of security force personnel deaths has decreased. Civilian casualties have also reduced since their peak in 2006.
  • District-Wise Insights: Bijapur district witnessed the highest number of clashes in 2024, resulting in significant Maoist casualties. This district, along with Sukma, hosts several Border Security Force (BSF) camps, indicating intense security operations.
  • Surrenders and Operations: Despite some districts being declared ‘Maoist-free’ in recent years, significant operations continue, such as the joint BSF and District Reserve Guard operation in Kanker district resulting in top Maoist commander Shankar Rao’s death.
  • Development and Insurgency: There is a correlation between the intensity of the insurgency and lower development indicators like sanitation and literacy in districts like Dantewada, Bijapur, Sukma, Bastar, and Kanker. These areas are heavily forested, complicating security operations.

Way forward: 

  • Integrated Development and Security Strategy: Implement a comprehensive strategy that integrates robust security measures with accelerated development initiatives in LWE-affected regions. This approach should prioritize improving socio-economic conditions, addressing land alienation, providing livelihood opportunities, and enhancing basic infrastructure like education and healthcare.
  • Enhanced Intelligence and Targeted Operations: Strengthen intelligence-gathering capabilities to preempt Maoist attacks and disrupt their operational networks effectively. This includes enhancing coordination among security forces, intelligence agencies, and local law enforcement to gather timely and actionable intelligence.

Mains PYQ: 

Q Left Wing Extremism (LWE) is showing a downward trend, but still affects many parts of the country. Briefly explain the Government of India’s approach to counter the challenges posed by LWE. (2018)

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