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Crackdown in Sukma vital for police to combat Naxal menace

Crackdown in Sukma vital for police to combat Naxal menace Security forces need to make significant inroads into Sukma, considered the strongest military base of the outlawed movement in the country, to win the “war” against Maoists, experts and police officials feel.

The Sukma district in extreme south Bastar of Chhattisgarh lies on the tri-junction of three states- Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra – with the Maoists dominating the region through an extensive network of ‘Janatana Sarkar’ units coupled with dreaded guerrilla fighter battalions.

“The Naxals have inflicted maximum causalities on security forces in Sukma region only, including the killing of 76 security personnel in Tadmetla in 2010, which clearly shows the intensity of their dominance in the region,” Professor Girishkant Pandey, Head, Department of Defence Studies at Government Science College here, told PTI.

“Unless and until security forces don’t gain control over south Sukma forests, it would not be easy for them to win the war against Naxals in Bastar,” he said.

The three insurgency-riddled areas — Jharkhand-Bihar border, Abhujmad and Sukma region of Dandakaranya — in Chhattisgarh have been consistently claimed by Maoists as their base points.

Though the CRPF and local police achieved success in weakening the rebels on Bihar-Jharkhand border, in the other two areas it appears they still need to make effective incursions, he said.

The quadrilateral patch of Sukma, from Dornapal to Kistaram and Bhejji to Jagargunda on?Golappalli?track (spread in area of 4000 sq km in South Bastar), serves as heaven for the Naxals as it not only helps them in movement across Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Maharashtra through Chhattisgarh, but also for guerrilla warfare training amid dense forests and inaccessible terrain, Pandey said.

The killing of seven Special Task Force men in Pidmel (Polampalli) early this month and 14 CRPF men in Kasalpada (Chintagufa) in December last year have once again raised questions over the police plan and action in this area which had earlier also witnessed number of Naxal ambushes, he said.