The Balaghat Police acting late on Wednesday (August 10) night, had arrested a prominent Maoist after an intense gunfight.
In the Balaghat and Mandla districts of Madhya Pradesh adjoining the border of Chhattisgarh, the activities of Naxalites have increased abruptly. Apart from these two districts, the administration has also included the Dindori district in the list of Maoist-affected districts, where the shadow of red terror is disseminating briskly in recent times.
While the Maoists want to increase their penetration in these areas, on the other hand, due to the relentless campaign of the Madhya Pradesh Police, their plans seem to be floundering.
The Madhya Pradesh Police and the Maoists have been playing cat and mouse games in recent times. In this connection, the Balaghat Police acting late on Wednesday (August 10) night, had arrested a prominent Maoist after an intense gunfight.
Balaghat police, on the tip of an informer, arrested Hardcore Maoist Sandeep alias Lakhu Kunjam of Khatiya Mocha Dalam by laying siege in Jairasi village of Birsa police station area. At the same time, his four other Maoist accomplices managed to escape from the spot amid police firing.
In the late-night operation, a gunfight broke between the police and Maoists near Jairasi village, where four Maoists escaped under cover of firing. The police caught the infamous Maoist Sandeep Kunjam. It is being told that Sandeep Kunjam is a resident of village Kuwakonda in Bastar, who is a member of the Khatiya Mocha Committee. Sandeep was nabbed by the police when he ran out of bullets during the encounter.
According to the police, the police arrested Maoist Sandeep Kunjam was being sought by Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh for a long time. There are 18 cases registered against him in Madhya Pradesh and 4 in Chhattisgarh. Due to which the Government of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh had announced a reward of Rs 3 and 5 lakh on him, respectively.
For the past few years, the tribal-dominated areas of Mandla and Balaghat have emerged as Maoist strongholds in Madhya Pradesh. In January itself, security agencies had confirmed that around 100 Maoists from Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra had sneaked into Balaghat and Mandla forests of Madhya Pradesh. Apart from this, if sources are to be believed, Maoists in smaller groups are continuously sneaking into Balaghat from the Dandakaranya area.
It should be noted that Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Shri Narottam Mishra, realizing the danger in his last visit to Balaghat, had demanded the Central Government to deploy six companies of paramilitary forces in Balaghat.
Indeed, there is an apprehension that the Maoists may need a bastion to revive their marginalized organization so that they can breathe a new life into it. Before the Maoists establish Balaghat and its surrounding areas as the new bastion of red terror, the security forces and the government must curb this red terror by showing vigilance.