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Naxals gaining foothold in Nagpur

NAGPUR: Santra, Peepal, Aam, Khajur and Bar. It may sound like the recipe of a fruit salad, but is much more sinister than that. These are some codes by which Naxalites reportedly refer to cities in Maharashtra.

The city police are now trying to decipher such codes that have been found in the documents seized from the four naxals, who were arrested near Deekshabhoomi on Tuesday.

While the police conjecture that 'santra' refers to Orange city Nagpur and 'aam' is another name for Amravati, the meaning of other monickers has yet to be established. These codes hint at a deep-rooted network of Maoists in the state, especially cities like Nagpur and Mumbai, sources said.

The arrest of Mumbai resident Arun Thomas Pereira alias Sanjay Choudhary also hints that Maoist activities may have started striking roots in the commercial capital of India. "Maoists are aiming to consolidate their operations in at least two cities in Maharashtra. Although we aren't sure about one of them, the other is Nagpur," said commissioner of police SPS Yadav during a media briefing on Wednesday.

"In Mumbai, Naxal activities might be very low-key but their existence cannot be denied," Yadav added. "Naxalites might be present in Mumbai, but in lesser numbers than in Nagpur," he conjectured.

The copy of a letter written by Maoist leader Sushil Roy, presently lodged in Kolkata jail, addressed to the West Bengal chief minister was also found from the possession of the arrested naxals.

Several translated documents related to the violence in Nandigram in West Bengal found in the seized documents hinted that apart from Dalit sentiments and farmers' suicides in Vidarbha, Maoists are also looking at a broader horizon for support.

The police chief said the naxals probably chose Deekshabhoomi to meet, discuss and exchange materials to fan communal violence based on Dalit sentiments in near future. Apart from a convenient meeting point, Nagpur could be a place for treatment of injured cadres or their family members, rehabilitation and shelter, stated Yadav.

The Times of India

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posted by Resistance 5/10/2007 10:48:00 AM,

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