What is Maoism?
Maoism, also known as Mao Zedong Thought in China, is a communist political ideology based on the ideas of the Chinese political leader Mao Zedong, the followers of which are known as Maoists.
Maoism is a political ideology founded by Mao Zedong. Mao Zedong established a variant of Marxism–Leninism for realising a socialist revolution in the rural, pre-industrial society of the Republic of China, and subsequently the People’s Republic of China. The philosophical distinction between Maoism and classic Marxism–Leninism is that in pre-industrial countries, the peasants, rather than the proletariat, is the revolutionary vanguard.
Its primary principle is permanent revolution, with a focus on the peasantry, small-scale industries, and agricultural collectivization.
It is a strategy for seizing state power that combines military insurrection, public mobilisation, and strategic partnerships. As part of their insurgency strategy, the Maoists employ propaganda and deception against state institutions. Mao referred to this as the ‘Prolonged People’s War,’ with the emphasis on capturing power through a ‘military line.’
Who are the Indian Maoists?
The Communist Party of India (Maoist) is an Indian Maoist communist political party and militant group that seeks to destabilise the “semi-colonial and semi-feudal Indian state” through people’s war. On September 21, 2004, it was formed by the merging of the Communist Party of India (Marxist–Leninist) People’s War (People’s War Group) and the Maoist Communist Centre of India (MCCI). The CPI (Maoist) is sometimes referred to as the Naxalites, a reference to the Naxalbari insurgency led by hardline Maoists in West Bengal from 1967. Since 2009, the party has been listed as a terrorist organisation in India by the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
The ‘Red Corridor’
The Red Corridor is the region in the eastern, central and the southern parts of India that experience considerable Naxalite–Maoist insurgency. This includes Jharkhand, West Bengal, Orissa, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, and Andhra Pradesh, as well as Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka.
Which are the States considered to be LWE affected?
Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa, and Bihar are among the worst-affected states. West Bengal, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh are all deemed partly impacted. The states of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh are deemed marginally impacted. Andhra Pradesh, which was formerly deemed badly hit, has shown significant recovery. The CPI(Maoist) is making inroads into the southern states of Kerala, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu, with the goal of connecting the Western and Eastern Ghats. The CPI(Maoist) intends to broaden its efforts and establish a foundation in the tri-state region of Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu. They are trying incursions into Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, which might have major long-term strategic ramifications.
What are Front Organizations?
A front organisation is any institution that is set up and managed by another organisation, such as intelligence agencies, organised criminal groups, terrorist organisations, secret societies, banned organisations, religious or political organisations, advocacy groups, or companies. Front organisations can act on behalf of the parent group without the acts being ascribed to the parent group, allowing them to remain hidden from public scrutiny.
The Front Organizations are offshoots of the parent Maoist party that claim a distinct existence in order to avoid legal culpability. The Front groups carry out party propaganda/disinformation, recruit “professional revolutionaries” for the underground struggle, collect cash for the insurgency, aid cadres in legal difficulties, and offer safe homes and shelters to underground cadres. Front Organizations’ functionaries offer an academic gloss to the underlying brutality in Maoist philosophy. In other words, they whitewash the bloodshed in order to make the Maoist worldview more appealing to urban audiences and the media. There are Front organisations in 20 Indian states.
The “Urban Maoists”
The Maoist danger in metropolitan Maharashtra has been identified by the Intelligence Bureau (IB) as a severe security issue. According to Maharashtra Police, the caste violence sparked by a Dalit (backward caste) ceremony in Bhima-Koregaon, Maharashtra, on January 1 — which quickly spread to other parts of Maharashtra — was the result of a growing unholy nexus between Maoists on the one hand and disgruntled elements of the backward castes on the other.
The guidebook Strategy and Tactics of the Indian Revolution, released in 2007, by the Communist Party of India (Maoist), lays out a plan for overthrowing the Indian state, initially in rural regions and later in major cities. The IB warns against active Maoist forces and their sympathisers in India’s metropolitan centres stoking the embers of discontent among the backward classes in order to incite socio-political upheaval.
What is the policy of Government of India to combat LWE?
To tackle LWE, the Government of India believes in a comprehensive long-term policy that addresses security, development, safeguarding local populations’ rights and entitlements, enhancing governance, and managing perceptions. Aside from the deployment of CAPFs, the majority of security-related initiatives are geared at supporting state forces in capacity building. On the development front, an Integrated Action Plan (formerly known as Additional Central Assistance to LWE Impacted Districts) covering 88 affected districts has been in effect since 2010, with the goal of providing public infrastructure and services. In addition, a large-scale road development plan for LWE regions has been proposed. An Empowered Group of Officers keeps a close eye on the success of major initiatives. Particular focus is being placed on the execution of the Forest Rights Act and the assuring of entitlement.
The Union Home Minister has approved the National Policy and Action Plan to address the LWE problem, which has been distributed to states and other stakeholders for execution. To solve the LWE problem, the Central Government has taken an integrated strategy that includes security, development, upholding rights and entitlements of local immunities, public perception management, and good administration.
Before completing the National Policy and Action Plan, all stakeholders, including state governments, were consulted. The State Governments’ and other stakeholders’ perspectives/comments were included into the National Policy and Action Plan.
Currently, more than 100 Bns CAPFs and a number of CoBRA Teams are stationed in LWE-affected states. In the future years, the amount of deployment will gradually grow. Furthermore, the states have committed military in the LWE theatre. The government’s approach is to solve the security vacuum in LWE-affected areas.
What can an ordinary citizen do against Left Wing Extremism?
An ordinary citizen can do the following things;
a) Condemn the violent and brutal atrocities being perpetrated by the CPI (Maoist) and other LWE groups on innocent civilians in any available forum including the social media.
b) Sensitize fellow-countrymen to the dangers of outdated, failed and deeply flawed Maoist ideology to the nation-building process.
c) Learn to recognize the propaganda war unleashed against the Indian state by the Maoist Front Organizations and Maoist ideologues/sympathizers.
d) Cherish and nurture the democratic way of life deeply enshrined in our Constitution, as opposed to the totalitarian and oppressive nature of the Maoist ideology and percepts.