Disbanded anti-Maoist front regroups in Bastar

first_imgA self-proclaimed anti-Maoist group in Maoist insurgency-hit Bastar region of Chhattisgarh, which was dissolved within hours after the removal of controversial police officer Mr.Shiv Ram Prasad Kalluri from Bastar earlier this year, has been formed again.The Action Group for National Integrity popularly known as “AGNI” came into existence for the second time during a recent meeting of “imminent citizens” of Bastar at Jagdalpur district headquarters of the region.“The former convener of the AGNI Mr.Anand Mohan Mishra and representatives from some other organizations like the Bastar chamber of commerce met at Jagdalpur on April 5. Many imminent citizens stressed on the need of the existence of AGNI during this meeting. After this meeting, Mr.Sampat Jha and Mr.Subba Rao (former members of the ANGI) have decided to announce that the AGNI has been regrouped again,” said a statement circulated by the AGNI.“With the regrouping, it has been decided to establish AGNI’s branches in other districts of Chhattisgarh and other states also. All the states, which are affected by Maoist violence, will be included in the AGNI,” the organization added.The AGNI was formed last year after the dissolution of notorious Samajik Ekta Manch, an anti-Maoist organization formed by the members of former anti-Maoist militia Salwa Judum with the support of a section of the then Bastar police top brass.Many members of the Samajik Ekta Manch were accused of an attack on the house of a freelance journalist in Bastar last year and in many other such incidents.The existence of Samajik Ekta Manch in Bastar coincided with many incidents of attacks on human rights activists and campaign against journalists covering this conflict-hit region.The new edition of the AGNI also involves many members of the Salwa Judum which was banned by Supreme Court in 2011.These anti-Maoist vigilante groups along with the then team of IPS officers in Bastar headed by Mr.Kalluri were in news for their controversial statements and their hostilities towards journalists covering the region and human rights activists.The AGNI members were disappointed with the removal of Mr.Kalluri from Bastar and had disbanded their group within hours. Other IPS officers were also removed from Bastar after a few days after Mr.Kalluri’s transfer.last_img

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