Targeting senior terrorists of the outlawed Communist Party of India (Maoist) group, the Andhra Pradesh police have managed to make tactical gains on Naxalism seizing sophisticated weapons and cash from the encounter. In recent encounters, they managed to neutralize gang leaders in several districts.
Recent spate of tactical success has been mainly through better intelligence and operations planning prompting police officials to claim that the Naxals are "more or less neutralized" in the "Kadapa and its nearby areas" whittling down the "membership" to be "around 600."
Police say that they will now focus "on Nallamala area" where many of the Naxals "managed to escape" but discount them saying that they "are not senior cadres and are likely to surrender in the next few days." However, officials say that the Naxals were "planning something serious" and their movement was known for more than 10 days but were unable to confront them due to "heavy rain." The police still do not know the sources of money but suspect that they got it from extortion.
In neighboring Chhattisgarh and Orissa, Naxals managed to attack police patrols and target senior officers making off with weapons and significantly weakening the morale of the police. Even in those states, many "senior" cadre have surrendered because of relentless pursuit or fatigue.
Despite such tactical successes, it is important that there is continued focus on Naxalism and coordination of police action. The Government must also study symptoms that continue to feed such movements with cadre.