Prof. G. Hargopal (Centre for Human Rights, University of Hyderabad)
Prof. Hargopal emphasised on critical role of civil society in stopping Naxal violence by empowering civil society and tribal people of Naxal affected area. The greater importance to Indian constitution is of prime importance.
He narrated incidents of interaction with Naxal in Andhra Pradesh. He said that Naxal are not at all interested in revolution by gun and they don’t support violence. Weapon is their last concern for Naxals. But they want transformation of the society, and their concern is for rural and tribal India long exploited and ignored by Government by not implementing constitutional mandates. Hence it is essential to make voice of people heard and to bring change in current system (of not listening to people and their aspiration). So for such thing radical changes are necessary. The use of force by Government leaves Naxals with no option but to use similar force. If Government don’t use force against Naxals, there will not be any need for Naxals to use the force.
In an effort to resolve this issue, Government of Andhra nominated two ministers for dialogue with Naxal. But every time when meeting was held in secretariat, there was an encounter and bombing from both sides. As a result talks came to stalemate. At the same time top three Naxal leaders were killed in Bangalore. That was when Peoples’ Liberation Gorilla army was formed. Till then, Naxals did not have organized army.
After efforts were made by subsequent Governments to resolve issues by discussion with Naxal. Naxals put forward demands for land reform. Naxal provided statistics on disparity in land distribution.
Second was self reliance and independence from foreign investment. As it is mortgaging the nation to multinationals and foreign banks. World Bank is binding government not to support farmers through subsidies, and later World Bank withdrew the loan from Andhra Pradesh stating that Government has not privatized entire rice procurement; they have not privatized Food Corporation of India. They continue to give subsidy to agriculture. Government has not sold 32 PSU undertaking, which World Bank wanted to be sold to private multinationals. Those were the conditions placed by World Bank for giving loan.
He also stated that 40% recruits are girls in Naxal. Moral collapse of cultural industries and insecurity for females in the country is making them an important source of recruitment for Naxal movement.
What perhaps we need to reflect is that Naxal movement has several sources of recruitment without our knowledge as things are going wrong in our society.
Naxal movement will not have any recruit if socio-economic condition of people improves. In developed area, no one will vote for Naxal movement. Today entire movement is in tribal belt of the nation, in states like Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Central Bihar, Gadchiroli, Orissa, Part of West Bengal and Andhra.
A movement once considered negligible has grown to great extend? The ignorance and negligence of Government is the only reason for problems to grow out of its proportion.
He concluded that we have to apply a legal check on Indian state and moral check on these (Naxal) movements to preserve vibrancy of the civil society. Hence, state and all such movements should be accountable to civil society of India.
Shri. E. N. Rammohan, IPS, (Former Director General, BSF)
Shri. Rammohan emphasized on separate role of administration and politician/political parties. Interference of politicians in the work of administration and committed bureaucracy is responsible for lack of governance, injustice and corruption problem.
He talked for protection of civilians in Naxal hit areas. He emphasized that the armed forces should be critically legal in their action when acting in counter insurgency operations in the homeland. Negligence, exploitation of resources in tribal areas is the core reason for Naxal violence. He further emphasized on tackling the social and structural problem in Indian society and unifying every Indian under one norm of Indian constitution with equality and opportunity.