Tribals caught between devil and deep sea

VISAKAPATNAM: The tribals of the agency areas of the district are caught between the devil and the deep sea and are spending sleepless nights.

While on the one hand Naxalites are harassing them if they refuse to provide shelter, on the other the policemen are driving them to despair by causing problems to them, if they do not reveal the whereabouts of the Naxalites.

A war-like situation is prevailing in the agency areas and this has made the lives of the tribals miserable.

The tribals living in the Naxalite-dominated - Chintapalli, Koyyuru and GK Veedhi mandals - are living in a state of constant fear.

The tribals run the risk of being eliminated by the Naxalites, if they do not allow them into the village or provide shelter.

The Naxalites may dub them as ‘‘police informers’’ and make them target of their attacks.

The police are harassing the tribals, if they allow Naxalites into the village.

The sound of firing at some place or the other in the agency has become common. The Naxalites are full of vengeance against the cops for the killing of two of their colleagues in the recent past.

Interestingly, while the police have intensified their combing operations in the agency, the Naxalites have also intensified their activities.

The cops killed two Naxalites in an encounter at Pedhavalasa village of Chintapalli mandal on March 17. The Naxalites are believed to be waiting for an opportune time to avenge their deaths. It may be recalled that women Naxalites of the Galikonda Dalam fired at an AR constable G. Anand at Chamagadda village and injured him.

The police and Naxalites are after each other eversince. Meanwhile, the policemen are said to be raiding the houses of tribals who had provided shelter to Naxalites in the past and those who had worked as militants in the past.

The tribals allege that the policemen are harassing them wantonly.

However, police officials deny the charge saying that the Special Police parties were only inquiring about the whereabouts of Naxalites, whenever they go for combing operations. They say that the tribals can lodge a complaint with the officials, if the cops resort to excesses.

Referred by: Mukundan CM
Published on: April 5, 2001
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