Thursday, November 30, 2006

Naxal group behind Kherlanji protests

Jaideep Hardikar

NAGPUR: An outlawed naxal organisation has admitted to its involvement in the current struggle against the September 29 Kherlanji Dalit massacre for the first time.
“We have nothing to hide about this association. We pledge to stand by the Dalit masses and help them punish the real culprits,” Maharashtra State Committee General Secretary of the Communist Party of India (Maoists), Chandrakanth, has said in a letter drafted in English but signed in Hindi. The letter, dated November 18, has been circulated to a few local dailies and correspondents of national dailies based in Nagpur.
The letter has hailed "the heroic militant struggle" of Dalit masses against the Kherlanji killings and dared the Dalit leaders “to resign from their parliament and assembly seats if they were sincere to the Dalit cause.”
“Traditional Dailt leadership has sold itself in service of Brahminical upper castes and the reactionary classes. These leaders are ‘subhedars’ of the ruling elite,” the letter said. It has warned of intensifying the struggle to punish the political leaders behind the Kherlanji incident.
The chief of Anti-Naxal Operation Pankaj Gupta, told DNA on Tuesday that his office is examining the veracity of letter but “from the style and content the letter looks authentic.”The open admission by the naxals vindicates deputy chief minister R R Patil's statement when he linked the protests to a naxal hand. Patil had later retracted his statement.


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