Terror strikes again, Maoist guerrilla ambush kills 27

A tribal woman (left) picks tomatoes lying scattered on a road as a security person looks on after suspected Maoists set on fire four trucks from Andhra Pradesh at Bundu, Jharkhand, on August 25, 2009.

Source: AP

On Saturday 25th of May a group of Naxalite Maoist guerrillas attacked a motorcade of important political leaders in the state of Chhattisgarh, India. Sources report that ambush has left at least 27 people dead and 32 injured.  No arrests have been made yet, however the government is conducting a thorough investigation to bring those responsible to justice. Included in the casualties were 3 members of the Indian National Congress Party, police officers and some villagers.

The conflict between the Maoists and Indian government, known as Naxalite-Maoist insurgency, takes over 40 years. “The Maoists frequently accuse activists of being informers and warn them against implementing government programs. The police demand that they serve as informers, and those that refuse risk being accused of being Maoists supporters and subject to arbitrary arrest and torture.”- released Human Rights Watch in their report. Naxalities want to make India a communist country. According to The economist, the main target of latest attack was Mahendra Karma, Congress parliamentarian, who was responsible for plundering the state’s tribal areas for their natural and mineral wealth. Moreover, he started vigilante force in 2005 and founded Salwa Judum militaria to combat the rabels. „We are devastated” – said Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, who claims assault of Maoists to be an attack on democracy. According to the Guardian, the attackers barred the road by using felled trees across the road. After that, the guerrillas launched a landmine and that blew up one of the stopped cars and opened the fire at Congress leaders and their supporters and ran into a forest. According to New York Times “Officials estimated that 200 to 300 guerrillas were involved

According to the BBC news the suspects are yet to be found, but investigations and lots of efforts are being organized by the government who have made a commitment to find the suspects; but what is clear is that the attack was perpetrated by the far-left wing lobby, the rebels. From the decade of 60s, the militants have said that they are fighting for the underdogs. The authorities suspect that the Maoists possess the support not only in the poorest areas and in the indigenous communities, but also among the young and the intellectuals.

A questioned to be posed now concerning the attacks regards the consequences on the upcoming elections, which will take place in November 2013. . According to The Economist the ruling party Bharatiya Janata Party or BJP was expected to keep its power. However now there is more sympathy for Congress, “which may field relatives of the slain as candidates, is quite possible”. Along with that there many doubts have raised about the effectiveness of the long-ruling government of the BJP. We will see the outcome of this event in the months to come.

For a visual report on this story by Al Jazeera click the play button:

Written by Emanuele del Tufo, Heli Haapanen, Maria Torres, Izabela Lowjeska and Dimitar Shadoura


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