February 6, 2009


KOLKATA: A local committee member of the CPI (M) comrade Haradhan Majhi, his son Ravi Majhi, and a Party worker Chandrasekhar Majhi have become the latest victims of Maoist violence. Comrade Haradhan died from a massive head wound for he had been shot on the forehead at point blank range from a pistol by the Maoist killers. Chandrasekhar and Ravi are recuperating at a hospital near the Bersa locality of Balarampur at Purulia where the attack took place in the late evening.

Comrade Haradhan had long been on the hit list of the Maoist killers. Of late, he had forsaken his ancient bicycle to move around in an equally rickety motorbike. This could not save him. Comrade Haradhan (50) was on his way back from the bi-weekly haat and he had made purchases of some essential commodities for the week. The two other comrades were riding pillion.

The killers waited near a culvert where the road bends sharply and vehicles have to slow down. As soon as comrade Haradhan throttled down the motorbike and ‘walked’ the vehicle to negotiate the hard bend, the Maoist villain, there were seven of them, all clad in olive green camouflage fatigues and wearing Army-style peaked caps, came forward, pressed a pistol on his forehead and fired twice. The CPI (M) leader died on the spot, and the two other comrades received gunshot wound as the Maoists made good their escape.

Biman Basu has condemned the killing and said that there was a plan foot by the Maoists to create anarchy if they could in the western districts of Bengal. He called upon the mass of the people to remain vigilant. Elsewhere, on 3 February, a Maoist leader addressing the media at the press club in Kolkata responded to a query to say that the ultimate plan of their outfit was to create an autonomous jungle mahal area comprising Bankura, Purulia, and Midnapore west.(INN)


KOLKATA: An act of unimagined inhumanity unfolded before my eyes, deep into the evening of 2 February at Lalgarh. The cortege carrying the mortal remains of the martyr comrade Nandalal draped in a large Red flag was on its way towards the designated place for the last rites deep in the afforested area of Ramgarh. The procession comprised several thousand villagers and was led by the local committee members of the CP (M). The villagers wept angrily for, comrade Nanda had been a household name, always available by their side, rain nor shine. The entire ambience was a mix of rousing slogans and bitter tears.

As the cortege took the final bridle path that would lead to Ramgarh, the marchers found themselves confronted by a dozen-odd heavily armed, masked men and women who rudely declared that the cortege must not proceed farther, the body must be left behind and the marchers gone. A veritable thunderclap of a sound wave hit the accosters as rousing slogans rent the air. The Maoists made a temporary, as it turned out, retreat.

They came back with guns blazing. A very unequal mêlée ensued before our eyes. The CPI (M) workers threw a ring around comrade Nanda’s body while the villagers started to pelt the shooters with brickbats and stones. Palestine and Lebanon have shown that stones are no match for bullets raining death from automatic weapons. Three CPI (M) workers fell.10 were carried off with severe wounds to the chest and abdomen. Yet, the CPI (M) wouldn’t give an inch of the forest land to the craven Maoists who finally chose discretion as the better part of valour and ran away. The last remains of comrade Nandalal were subsequently carried to his native village where they were consigned to flames.

The next morning we met up, at the Lalgarh bazaar, with a self-proclaimed ‘Maoist’ supremo who spoke to us on conditions of anonymity although he his name frequently appears in the corporate newspapers. Openly acceding and maybe with a touch of cravenly boast the shoddy fact that he worked as a leader of the local Trinamul Congress unit during the day while taking on the persona of a Maoist killer when daylight has faded from the jungle mahal of the Santhal Pargana, the double-faced goon freely noted that a spree of killing of CPI (M leaders and workers ‘has been decided on,’ by the ‘joint command’ to work back a terror and abject fear in to the hearts often villagers, and thus also gaining the 'ground lost politically,' of recent yore. He also boasted of the publicity that the killings received in the right manner in the big media. How right the man was. Coming back t the city, I note every one of the corporate media organ, print or audio-visual deep in thought abut ‘who fired the shots at Lalgarh and Ramgarh....(INN)


KOLKATA: Mass resistance had made the craven Maoists and their running lackeys in the Jharkhand Party and the Trinamul Congress lie low for seven weeks now. In between, internecine struggle amongst their cowardly ranks resulted in the killing of a Maoist followed by that of a Trinamul goon with an ill-reputable history sheet of considerable proportions in the police dastabej (documented records.)

Mass resistance and revolutionary discretion, as Biman Basu, state secretary, Bengal CPI (M) has hammered repeatedly into the hearts-and-minds of the CPI (M) workers, however, cannot match upto a well-planned, swift, secretive, spineless, and evil attack on CPI (M) comrades, bold and resilient as they are, especially when the assailants are using superior attacking strength in the shape of heavy and sophisticated firearms, ferried from across the border from Jharkhand and Bihar, especially the former.

As I move around the spot at Lalgarh, in the descending darkness and amidst the shiver of a clammy cold on 2 February, in what is commonly cited on both sides of the border as the Santhal Parganas, where the comrade had fallen in pool of blood, I note the extreme unfriendliness of the terrain. There are innumerable hillocks, there are clumps of thick, dense growths, there are, also large thickets of tall and imposing and leafy and evergreen sal and piyal trees. The border is just a stone’s throw away. The paths are narrow and set on an extreme rolling terrain. The attackers had their route in and out, well-planned, the villains.

I learn that the slain comrade, Nandalal Pal (52), a member of the Binpur-1 zonal committee of the CPI (M) was that bit out of sorts and out of mind following the sudden demise of his mother. On 1 February, comrade Nandalal wandered slightly off the beaten track following the cremation of his mother’s last remains by the side of a narrow, dried-up-in-the-winter stream. He would not know that he had been kept under sharp focus by the Maoists and their adjutants for a long time. After all, he was one of the best organisers that the local CPI (M) unit has thrown up over the years and the decades through struggles and movements.

The moment comrade Nandalal became alone and entered a lonely stretch – it was about mid-day – some distance away from the nearest village cluster, five men, faces swathed in head scarves swooped on him, hit him hard, twice, on the head, with pistol butts, and then systematically, cruelly shot him along his thin body from the head to the stomach five times with what were foreign-manufactured, most probably Bulgarian-made 9mm pistols.

Biman Basu and Midnapore west secretary of the CPI (M) Prof Dipak sarkar have condoled comrade Nandalal’ s dastardly killing and have called upon the police and the administration to bring the assailants to book as quickly as possible. In the meantime, the CPI (M) stands to lose one of its warriors for the cause of farther social changes.

Te entire Lalgarh area displayed its solidarity for the fallen comrade by taking out numerous marches and rallies. A bandh was observed. The CPI (M) units of the Lalgarh area have decided to attend the Brigade rally come 8 February carrying large Red banners, and wearing Red headbands, in their rousing thousands. (INN)