April 19, 2010


KOLKATA: Besides West Bengal, the joint action force is operating in Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Jharkhand, Chattisgarh, and Bihar to oust the ‘Maoist’ from this region.

To inspect this operation, readers will not fail to note, Chidambaram has chosen Lalgarh in Bengal as his place of visitation In relation to this it is to be noted that the now-hot-now-cold ‘ally’ of the central government the Trinamul Congress has been persistently condemning the role of the joint action forces’ drives.

On 3 April in Delhi, Trinamul Congress supremo Mamata had a half-an hour meeting with Chidambaram. According to the central home ministry, Lalgarh has been chosen for the visit mainly for ‘security-related’ [?] reasons.

It is important to note that Andhra Pradesh is greatly affected by the ‘Maoist’ predicament. Nevertheless, none from the central home ministry much less than the home minister, has visited that state. On Thursday the home ministry claimed, much to Didi’s chagrin, to have been a ‘success’ in bringing down ‘Maoist’ activities under control, especially at Lalgarh thanks to the ops of the joint action force.

From 18 June of last year onwards, in the western part of Bengal, the joint action force has begun its work. Before this operation in Bengal, the joint force has been in operation in Chattisgarh. Later on, the joint action force has been in operation in Orissa and Jharkhand against the ‘Maoist’ brutality. No visits from the home ministry were warranted in these instances.

We recall how, to combat the ‘Maoist’ force, there had been a meeting organized by the central home ministry with the chief ministers of West Bengal, Jharkhand, Orissa and Bihar. The meeting was conducted in absence of the chief ministers of Bihar and Jharkhand. Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee the chief minister of Bengal and the chief minister of Orissa Navin Pattanayak attended the meeting among others.

We note here how the state Left Front government came to know about this ‘surprise’ visit of the home minister at the last possible moment. The present call of Chidambaram is merely for political reasons and this is the view of the mass of the people of Bengal and beyond. Through this visit, the Pradesh Congress wants to gain electoral mileage before the next and upcoming civic election.

Nonetheless it is interesting that despite tall promises and much drumming up of the political kind by the rainbow opposition here in Bengal, Chidambaram has nay’ed visits to those villages of Mangolkote in Burdwan where Trinamulis and Congressites have jointly carried on bloody and murderous assaults on both the CPI (M) leadership and the CPI (M) workers. (B PRASANT)

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