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Punjab Ready For The Next Reform Movement-Naxals Are Welcome

Jan 6, 2005
Metro-Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Punjab ready for the next reform
movement-Naxals are welcome

Punjab Newsline Network
Monday, 06 September 2010

CHANDIGARH: Time is now ripe for another 'reform' movement in Punjab. Now it may be the turn of Naxals to take the command. The indications are that the influence of Naxals in the border state is gaining ground.

Indeed, all the gradients needed for building a mass movement against ruling system are in place. Naxals have a wide choice to exploit the rising lawlessness, casteism, poverty, injustice, economic imbalance, unemployment, political vendetta poor administration, crime against women, and lack of sensible leadership in Punjab.

Punjab Government has indeed triggered the panic button. Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and DGP P.S.Gill have expressed seriousness of the Naxal problem in the state and began steps to counter the threat of naxalite activities. The naxal threat extends to neighbouring Haryana also where recently some arrests were made in this regard.

Naxals understood to have already done the spade work in rural areas particularly the Malwa belt where maximum number of farmers have committed suicide due to poverty and debtness. Malwa in late 60's and early 70's had witnessed first wave of Naxal movement. In early 70's when present Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal was heading the government, he crushed the movement and eliminated most of the naxal modules. This was the first time, Punjab witnessed landless farmers fighting against the tyrant feudal land lords.

Unfortunately, the landlord system still exists in Malwa, the home region of Badal family. It is again an irony that except Partap Singh Kairon and Darbara Singh all the Chief Ministers belonged to Malwa, still the most backward region of "prosperous" Punjab.

Going by the history of mass movements in Punjab, the first terrorist movement after annexation of Punjab by the British was that led by Maharaj Singh during 1850's that failed and Maharaj Singh exiled. This was followed by Namdhari movement two decades later. Ghadar Party arrived in Punjab just before first world war in 1913 and soon failed resulting in total failure and hanging of large number of Punjabis mainly sikh. This was followed by the Babbar Akalis in the Doaba area and then Bhagat Singh's Hindostan Naujawan Sabha. Small scale violence in the Mansa area of Patiala state began in 1946 and lasted till 1956 led by the splinter group split from CPI in Punjab and was known as Lal Party led by Teja Singh Sutantar.

After Naxal movement in early 70's, Punjab went through a decade long spell of Sikh militancy beginning in early 80's. In the recent history, Sikh struggle was the longest separatist movement which had the support of large section rural peasantry who initially saw it as reform movement. The social code of conduct enforced by militants was welcomed by poor sections of society. The reasons responsible for the Sikh militancy may be different but the factors supporting any reform movement were the same as of today.

Punjab DGP has blamed the human rights organisations for funding the operational activities of Naxals. The human rights organisations were also blamed for supporting the Sikh militancy and as a matter of fact number of senior police officers who were involved in extra judicial killings were brought to book with the efforts of human rights activists. The cold blooded killing of human rights activist Jaswant Singh Khalra of Amritsar by Punjab police is a quoted case on role of police and human rights activists. Khlara had exposed the cremation of over 25,000 unidentified dead bodies by Punjab Police.

DGP is on record to say that said as many as 15 front organisations of Maoists, including the BKU (Ugraha) and the Pendu Mazdoor Union, are active in Punjab and the police is keeping a close eye on the activities of the leaders and members of these outfits. Gill said Maoist sympathisers were more active in Malwa and Majha as compared to the Doaba region. Pro-Naxalite posters found pasted in Dhuri, Barnala and other areas had been distributed at a meeting of Maoists in Jalandhar. Pro-Naxal movement posters have appeared during the past few days in various towns of Ferozepur, Mansa and Bathinda districts. To counter the Naxal movement, Punjab police has also set up a 'Naxal Cell' headed by an officer of SP rank.

The administrative failure in delivering the good governance by respective governments is seen as one major reason for Naxals gaining hold. According to Gill during various agitations by farmers, employees and students for their demands, the Naxals have made inroads into these sections.

The position of law and order in the state could be gauzed from the urgency shown by Punjab Chief Minister who recently met the Union Home minister P. Chidambram for release of Rs.120 crores as special package to maintain law and order in the state. He has mentioned the threat posed by Naxals and Sikh terrorists groups.

Naxal ideologue Kobad Gandhy, who is under arrest, had revealed during interrogation that Punjab was a fertile ground to start a struggle. Gandhy had told investigators that Punjab did not have the issues of tribal rights, use of state resources or forests. The only rallying point could be to create a divide to show that the poor landless were being crushed by the ruling class.

Famous Punjabi writer Jaswant Singh kanwal wrote a novel "Lahoo di Lo" based on naxalite movement in Punjab, which according to him was inspired by true events.Who at one point or another were attracted to Naxalite movement in Punjab saw it as an extension and inspiration of Sikh teachings.

Of fighting against tyrant feudal landlord and giving power to poor masses. This remains the driving point behind any successful movement in Punjab.

source: http://www.punjabnewsline.com/content/punjab-ready-next-reform-movement-naxals-are-welcome/23689


Apr 3, 2005
Naxals in India are only active where there are Jungles.Punjab don't have any Jungles
so there is hardly any chance that a full fledged naxal movement will take place



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