Naxalite Movement Reaches Bihar

NK SINGH

AFTER the black years of famine the peasants of Bihar have learned a lesson. There is a ‘green-revolution’ here also. Food production is expected to increase by 7½ lakh tons this year.

But the ancient question remains: To whom does this crop belong? Who has the right to enjoy this paddy, this wheat, this maize, this arhar?

Of course those who work on the fields from dawn to dusk with their whole families, including their children — they should be the masters of this green treasure.

Now-a-days even the Anand-Margis are urging an end to exploitation. Doesn’t it show that everybody wants to end exploitation and is looking up to socialism?

And so everybody in India, from Acharya Vinoba Bhave to Kanu Sanyal, from Mrs Indira Gandhi to Miss K Ajitha are working, or at least seem to be working, for the same slogan ‘Land to the tiller.’

But then different people have different methods.

Sant Vinoba asks people to wait and not hurry and spoil all the things he has done for them. He assures the peasants that they will get their land after he has finished his various donation-programmes – Bhoodan, Gramdan, and so on.

But the Acharya is always a bit late. Things happen and then he appears on the scene with his pupils, who eat more but work less.

Was there no exploitation in Telengana before the revolt started there?  Did the exploitation of Naxalbari peasants start just a few months before their movement?

No, the roots are as old as history itself.

Where was the Acharya when the ‘bloody communists’ were creating a mess in those places?

The Dange-ites and the Marxists are said to be waiting for the day when they will capture power. Then they may be able to pass laws like the Bataidari (sharecropper) Bill, which is a step from feudalism to capitalism.

But as something is better than nothing, the peaceful ones are waiting for the day. For how long?

Twenty-two years have passed. For, long 22 years India has witnessed parliamentarian revolution, air-conditioned style.

Red Revolution in Green Fields

Here come the Naxalites, the so called extremists who say, “Down with votes, MLAs, MPs, Parliament and Assembly.”

Bihar is also moving. The progress is slow, but it does not matter. After all, things are in motion.

Once again after the elections the revolutionary peasants are taking their own crop from the zamindars with the help of arms.Police files are full of crop-looting cases. God knows how many — at least 400-500 cases.

In Bihar the main targets for ‘Red Revolution in Green fields’ are districts of Champaran, Munger and Purnea.

Bihar has got both the ‘Raja Press’ and the ‘Jute Press’. Both are busy reporting the setting up of so-called Kisan Sabhas to stop crop-looting.

The ‘Kisan Sabhas’ are working under the leadership of such well-known peasants like the Raja of Kuresela, the Raja of Ramgarh and the Raja of….. the peasants who own just a few hundred thousand acres of land.

Near Khagaria (North Bihar) a band of 100 people raided a land belonging to a Marwari who is a zamindar-cum-businessman.

The band cut the crop and then with patience heard a speech given by the group leader (a loudspeaker was provided on this occasion). The people were ‘unarmed’ except for a few hand-grenades.

This is just an example. Hundreds of cases like this are being filed in police stations in rural areas.

Papers publish these incidents with screaming headlines – ‘Naxalites Active Again.’

Three Naxalite Groups in Bihar

In Bihar three Naxalite groups are working.  Two of these are major groups.

One belongs to the Co-ordination Committee of Communist Revolutionaries, whose Bihar leader is Mr Satya Narayan Singh, known as SNS. Another is a guerrilla-type group under the leadership of Comrade BK Azad.

The two groups do not co-operate with each other. Comrade Azad suspects SN as an agent of the Dange-ites. He is against the manner in which the Co-ordination Committee was formed.

Both groups have got their own working fields.

Azad’s group is more active in his home area, Munger district, while the Co-ordination Committee has a good hold in Champaran district.

Ranchi has got tantalising possibilities for guerrilla war and training camps. But no move has been made by the Reds in Ranchi ever since the militant tribal movement of 1968.

A.K Roy, the famous and most popular non-tribal leader of the tribals, has now come out of jail. Birsa Seva Dal is again active.


At the moment there is no open conflict between the Azad group and the Co-ordination Committee, no leaflet war.

But the contrast is present because the two groups represent two different lines in the world revolutionary movement — the Che Guevara-type guerrilla warfare and the Maoist principle of base areas which teaches the Reds to be like fish in water.

Frontier 5 April 1969

Notes:

  • K. Ajitha – A Maoist active in Kerala, had captured popular imagination after the Naxalites attacked police stations in Kerala in the 60s. She was killed in a police encounter in 2016.
  • Dange-ites – CPI members.
  • Jute Press – Refers to connection between Jute Mill owners and newspapers
  • Raja Press – Darbhanga Maharaja’s newspapers.
Frontier 5 April 1969

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