Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Naxalite rebels ambush Indian troops

NAXALITE rebels in India have struck a stunning blow against the armed government forces sent to crush them.

Reports Al Jazeera: "Authorities say hundreds of fighters ambushed a bus carrying Indian police officers, killing at least 70 paramilitary personnel in the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh.

"In October, Al Jazeera interviewed 'Kishan-ji', commander of the group's armed wing, who said such attacks were 'directly related to the power of the state'. 'Eighty-five to 90 per cent of India's population lives under a dictatorship, it is not really a democracy,' he said.

"'The state is running a terror campaign against the people, and we fight against anyone who is perpetrating terror against the common population, be it any political party or the armed forces.'

Referring to the Chhattisgarh raid, Rubina Khan Shapoo, a senior correspondent for the private NDTV television station, said: "This is the deadliest attack so far and the biggest setback for Indian security forces'."

A superb first-hand account of the strengthening Naxalite uprising in India by author Arundhati Roy was recently published by The Guardian.