Appeal to Political Parties, Visit Bastar, Initiate a Dialogue, Restore Fundamental Rights

Published on: July 11, 2016
establishments like police stations/ outposts/ border outposts/ watch towers in sensitive area” as well as two lane roads. It is not clear that this blanket permission is entitled to ride over the requirements of PESA and FRA. Just as irrigation facilities, schools, dispensaries etc. must be built in consultation with the villagers, so should police outposts.

What the villagers across the district reported was that camps come up at night, and people’s land is taken over, without their rights being settled. In HP village in Kanker district, three people lost marhan[2] land they had been cultivating for several years, and to which they should have been given title under FRA. They are unable to say anything to the camp authorities. There is visible and massive destruction to the environment, with trees along the roads also being cleared for security purposes.

In the Raoghat area, where the camps are very frequent, the villagers reported that the Maoists had ceased visiting the villages about 2-4 years ago. They said that earlier the security forces used to pick up chickens and steal money from the villagers but that has also ceased. In some places, we also got the impression that the villagers were scared to report rapes or other abuse by the security forces to avoid further trouble. There has been no visible developmental benefit of having camps in terms of land pattas, irrigation facilities etc. As one villager said: “Earlier the Naxalites stopped road building. Now that they have gone, the government pays us no attention.”

The expansion of the camps has also exacerbated the tensions between villagers and Maoists, as we discovered in Soutnar and Koleng villages of Bastar district, with a chain of police arrests leading to Maoist retaliation on those surrendering which in turn leads to villagers demanding camps, which in turn invites more Maoist retaliation. All of this has heightened the insecurity of the villagers, caused divisions within the villages and created the potential for a new Salwa Judum type of displacement and division.
As we note below, the camps have also led to greater insecurity for women.
Specific Instances of Atrocities and Repression
Marjum fake encounter:

In first week of May, 2016 one police personnel died and one got injured in a cross firing between Police/Paramilitary forces and the Maoists near Marjum village in Dantewada district. After a few days, on 7thMay, 2016, the villagers of Junglepara went to Bheemapara to celebrate Beej Pandum, a traditional festival of the villagers. The village has two paras: Junglepara and Bheemapara (para is a local term for hamlets, elsewhere known as mohalla or tola). Singing, dancing and hunting which are parts of the festivalbegan at around 9 am in the morning. At around 12 noon, they were informed by the villagers of the neighboring village Chitrapal that there was a firing in the forest and two boys were shot. Two boys aged around 17-18 years, namely Markam Mangloo and Podiyam  Vijja, who went to bathe in the nearby stream, were found missing from the group of the Junglepara villagers. According to the villagers, the patrolling force found them alone, shot them there and declared them Maoists. The newspapers were informed by the policethat both the boys were Maoists and they were killed in an encounter.
As soon as we reached Dantewada, we got to know that there was a press conference called on 12th May, 2016 evening by ex MLAs of CPI Nanda Sori and Manish Kunjam.[3] Their sources told them that the killed boys were innocent tribals. They brought the villagers to Dantewada and in the press conference, villagers accused the police of the fake encounter. Villagers said that both the boys had no connection with Maoists at all. Ms. Balmati, the Sarpanch of the village and the Anganwadi helper Aaiti were also present along with the family members, relatives and other villagers in the press conference who also confirmed that the police was making false allegations. The deceased boys and their families were well known to them and these were nothing else but the murders of innocent tribal boys.  They also said that later that day, two more boys namely, Dewa and Podiyam were