Insight: On Naxalism in India

Bodies of suspected separatist militants and confiscated weapons are displayed after a gun battle at Loktak Lake in Manipur

The CRC-CPI (ML) was liquidated in 1991, resulting in the formation of new outfits like the Kerala Communist Party and the Maharashtra Communist Party.

Even while all these were happening, a powerful group was making its presence felt in Andhra Pradesh. In 1980, the legendary Naxalite leader Kondappally Seetharamaiah founded the CPI-(ML) Peoples War or the Peoples War Group. After the disappearance of CRC CPI-ML, the MCC and CPI-ML (Peoples War) remained the major groups upholding the idea of armed struggle.

For a long time, these two organizations, operating mainly in West Bengal, Bihar, Orissa and Andhra were engaged in bitter turf war. After the intervention of top leaders and a series of bilateral discussions, the two outfits decided to merge to become the entity called CPI (Maoist).

Muppala Lakshmana Rao alias Ganapathi, who replaced Kondappally as the general secretary of the Peoples War, was elected the general secretary of the CPI (Maoist). The politburo of the party include Mallojula Koteswara Rao alias Kishenji, Mallojula Venugopal alias Sonu alias Bhupathi, Prasantha Bose alias Nirbhoy, Nambala Keshava Rao, Katakam Sudershan, and Cherkuri Rajakumar alias Azad . Malla Raji Reddy, another politburo member, was arrested from Ankamali in Ernakulam in 2007. After jumping the bail, he rejoined the organization recently. Another politburo member Misir Besra was arrested by the police in Bihar last year, but the Maoists ambushed the police team while he was being taken to the court and forcibly released him.