Toll rises to 22 as bodies of 17 more jawans recovered at Maoist encounter site in Chhattisgarh

Express News Service
NEW DELHI: When Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday said that the Maoists attacked out of desperation to counter new security camps opened in their core areas, he described the possibility that many security experts were apprehending for the past few months.

After the 2017 Burkapal encounter, security forces are employing various strategies to counter the influence and movement of Maoists.

A remarkable attempt was to slowly increase the penetration of the security forces in LWE areas by gradually opening up new police and paramilitary camps.

This was done mainly to cut down the area of Maoist influence gradually to a minimum. 

By expanding the network of security camps around the Sukma-Bijapur border, paramilitary forces in conjuction with the police are slowly tightening the noose around the Maoists.

From 2017, 24 new camps were opened up in core Maoist areas such as Pamed, Minpa, Galgam, Tarrem, Tippapuram, Usoor. Of these 24 camps, four camps were opened in February  at Tarrem, Mukram Nala, Elarmadgu and Galgam.

“What we are doing is bifurcating and then trifurcating Maoist areas. Being able to have camps in forward areas such as Galgam, Tarrem and Minpa, allows us to launch area domination exercises in places we have never been to in such strong numbers. This is hurting the Maoists as they are being confined in increasingly smaller sectors. Saturday’s encounter is a pushback against this lasso that we have been tightening around them,” a source in the state’s intelligence department said.

Another official said government’s decision to make transfer of tendu patta  online has hurt their ability to make essential purchases.

“All such measures have dealt a serious blow to the Maoists, which are already grappling with an aging leadership and drying up reserves of recruits.”