Bloodbath in Chattisgarh
In any other country in the world, this would have been the number one headline for atleast two weeks.
Should we talk about the killing of 11 unarmed protestors in Nandigram by police fire (or) the killing of 49 policemen by naxal fire ?
Reality Check thinks that the killings of the policemen are more shocking because the police represent the states’ monopoly over the use of violence (or in this case, the lack thereof). The monopoly over the use of force is the bedrock on which countries are built. India cannot progress beyond the kindergarten stage unless this monopoly is assured and enforced. In fact, Max Weber even went to the extent of defining a state as an organization that has the legal monopoly over the use of physical force.
In the latest attack Naxalites attacked a police camp in Chattisgarhs Bijapur district killing 49 policemen. You would expect that the sheer magnitude of this attack and the fact that policemen were killed would be enough to make headlines for days on end. Not. Not in India.
Sahara Samay reports that the Naxals even shot those who ran to save their lives.
Raipur, March 15: As many as 49 security force personnel were killed on Thursday morning in a major attack by Maoists in Chhattisgarh’s Bijapur area.
The personnel of the Chhattisgarh Armed Force (CAF) and Special Police Officers (SPOs) were killed when Maoists attacked their Rani Bodali camp located in the interior of Bastar region, around 510 km south of capital Raipur.
The naxals set ablaze the police post and shot those running to save their life.
74 policemen, including 24 personnel of CAF 9th battalion and 50 SPOs deployed at the camp when the rebels attacked it.
Source : Sahara Samay
The time has come for Indians to accept the possibility that there need not be a non-violent solution to every violent problem. Policies like “Naxals can claim their own bounty” will not help. The earlier attack on the Salwa Judum camp must have led to the policemen being better prepared to repulse a flash attack. What happened ? Can funds and lack of technology be any restriction here ? What are the issues here ?
Does the Indian state have the will and the resources to demonstrate to the Naxalites that violence will be met with even more furious violence ? A disproportionate use of force is a well known deterrent. Talk to the American police about it. We have all seen on COPS how SWAT teams demonstrate their “macho power” even when the suspect is a 70 year old lunatic. I am not advocating airstrikes but something along the lines of “You hit me with a stone, I put a rocket launcher in your mouth and then hit you back with a stone“.
Does the Indian state, at the same time, have the will to define and address their social justice concerns ? Do they see any space for themselves on any of the social justice platforms in India (SC – ST – OBC – or minority) ? What is the way out for them ?
Does the Indian state have the will to hold political parties like the AP Congress accountable for its Naxal policy ? Is it okay to make temporary policies based on electoral interests rather than national interest ?