Ke­shava as new Maoist chief may mean more vi­o­lence

The Sunday Guardian - - Front Page - S. RAMA KR­ISHNA HY­DER­ABAD

The el­e­va­tion of Nam­bala Ke­shava Rao, alias Baswaraj, 63, a hard­liner, as the new sec­re­tary of the Com­mu­nist Party of In­dia (CPI) Maoists, is sure to spell more vi­o­lence in the red cor­ri­dor which tra­verses the cen­tral and eastern parts of the coun­try. Ke­shava Rao re­placed the age­ing Mup­pala Lak­sh­man Rao, alias Gana­p­athi, 69, a mod­er­ate in the ranks of the Maoist/Nax­alite lead­er­ship.

Un­til now, Ke­shava Rao was look­ing af­ter the cen­tral mil­i­tary com­mis­sion that car­ries out armed at­tacks on para­mil­i­tary and po­lice forces, apart from ne­go­ti­at­ing arms deals and im­part­ing train­ing to armed squads, etc. He is said to be be­hind many ma­jor land­mine blasts and raids on the Cen­tral forces in Ch­hat­tis­garh in the last four years.

Ke­shava Rao’s ap­point­ment as sec­re­tary, a post in the Maoist party equiv­a­lent to the supreme com­man­der of the armed squads, as well as iso­lated mil­i­tants and ac­tive and sym­pa­thetic party mem­bers and af­fil­i­ate units, is aimed at restor­ing the Nax­als’ lost ground in the Dan­dakaranya for­est belt and out­side, say po­lice soources.

Ke­shava Rao, who dis­con-

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