Gov unlikely to win against Naxals: Mulford

Naxalism in India is unlikely to abate any time soon because the Indian government is not willing to take the tough steps to address the concerns of the poor and the marginalized, wrote the then US ambassador David Mulford in a 2005 cable released by Wikileaks.

“Indian economic development has missed large portions of the countryside. India’s scheduled tribes (STs), and scheduled castes (SCs) who live in these remote areas, often face lives of desperation and view Naxalites as the only groups willing to defend them,” he explained.

To control the phenomenon, Indian government would have to “enact comprehensive land reform and other measures aimed at dismantling the rural feudal power structure than oppresses India’s poorest citizen,” he added.

There is, however, little sign that the GOI is willing to take such steps, he added.

“The Government of India is unlikely to eradicate Naxalism, as the crushing poverty, lingering feudalism and inherent discrimination of Indian society has nurtured desperation that finds its only outlet through violence.

“ The onus is on the Government to demonstrate to India’s have-nots that it is crafting an economic development program that is genuinely aimed at alleviating this desperate situation.

“As long as India’s political parties and elites are willing to accept the status quo and not take on feudal interests, the stalemate and the violence will continue,” he predicted.

Mulford, however, was also certain that Maoists will never rise to threaten the Indian state as a whole, though they were interested in creating a “revolutionary corridor” from Andhra Pradesh to Nepal.