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India Timeline - Year 2017



January 1

In a joint operation, the AR and Ledo Police arrested two linkmen of ULFA-I, identified as Raktim Moran and Manab Moran from Itakhola Ledo in Tinsukia District. According to the report, the two linkmen were sending information to ULFA-I and were engaged in illegal coal mines of Ledo area.

Five FICNs of INR 2000 were recovered in Demow Kachumari Pathar in Sivasagar District.

A combined team of Imphal East District Police Commando and 21 Para (Special Force) conducted frisking and checking at the eastern side of Top Khongnangmakhong bridge in Imphal East District and arrested one ‘self styled captain’ of UNLF, identified as Magsatabam Gojendro Singh alias Telheiba  (45).

January 2

Two persons hailing from Kerala's Kasaragod District were arrested near Panaji, while canvassing for a convention of Salafi Muslims scheduled to be held in Karnataka's Mangalore later this month, and distributing Kannada language pamphlets which had Islamic State (IS) symbol and a message titled, “ISIS Shaitan”. The arrested persons have been identified as Ilyas and Abdul Nazir. According to Police sources, the pamphlet is being analysed by top Police officials as the content of the pamphlet canvasses for a convention of Salafi Muslims due to be held in Mangalore from January 9-16. Police is also checking the mobile number mentioned on these pamphlets. "They have been booked under sections 107 (breach of peace) and 151 (preventive arrest) of the Criminal Procedure Code. They have been sent for medical examination at the Goa Medical College”, Police official said.

The producers of an upcoming film have filed a complaint alleging that they have been receiving threat calls from Dawood Ibrahim. According to the Police complaint, the producers have been receiving threat calls for the past 10 days. The complaint registered at the Parliament Street Police Station (New Delhi) said that since January 1, the producers had received five calls from a Pakistan-based mobile number.

Indian Army Chief Bipin Rawat said that dynamics of terrorism is constantly changing, and that Army must think ahead in that direction. "The fact that terrorists infiltrating from adversary's side means that they are getting support from them (Pakistani forces)," the Army Chief said. "We also have to think ahead, and ball has already rolling in that direction," he further added.

On surgical strikes, Rawat said that it was well though through operation and India has sent across a message with the strikes that attacks won't be tolerated. He further said Indian Army will not shy away from a second surgical strike if peace in the region is disrupted. The Army Chief also lauded the soldiers and officers who serve in the most challenging terrains, including those who have fought insurgency.

A top operative of the Bangladesh-based terrorist outfit JMB, Mohammad Mosiuddin alias Musa has revealed that Islamic State (IS) is planning to carry out terror attacks in the eastern part of the country. Mosiuddin claimed that the IS want to establish an Islamic caliphate in India. The SFs and the intelligence agencies are now verifying the possibility of an IS attack from the east following the interrogation of Musa. During his interrogation, Musa has made revelations that terror groups now aim at targeting foreigners at Kolkata's Mother House and lone wolf attacks on foreign tourists in Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir).

The UAE Government had seized properties of Dawood Ibrahim worth INR 150 billion. Earlier in the day, Indian UHM Rajnath Singh had stated that the Government is continuing efforts to bring back Dawood Ibrahim, However, even last year the UHM had asserted that India’s most wanted mafia would soon be arrested and brought back to the country.

The slogans 'ISIS coming soon' were found painted on Mata Mansa Devi temple walls in Dharampur town of Solan District in Himachal Pradesh located on the Kalka-Shmla highway. A case has been registered by the local Police against unidentified persons. The IB officials visited the spot and were keeping an eye on the possible ISIS sympathiser in the area. The slogans painted in red colour, possibly with the help of a stencil, have been blackened by the local police following the panic spread by the writings. Confirming the development, Superintendent of Police, Solan, Anjum Ara, who also visited the spot, said the Police was investigating the case and will soon arrest the people involved in the mischief. "I cannot reveal the information at this stage as it is very sensitive. A forensic examination had been conducted and the report is awaited. The investigation is on," Anjum Ara told. Sources said the intelligence agencies were keeping an eye on migrant labourers besides suspicious people. Dharampur is surrounded by sensitive Army cantonments and the authorities do not want to take any chances.

Mohammad Faheem Ansari, LeT operative, is being tried for his role in the 2007 attack on CRPF camp in Rampur, (Uttar Pradesh) visited Pakistan and obtained a passport there on fake papers, Manpreet Singh Vohra, the then Deputy High Commissioner at Indian High Commission in Pakistan, told the court of additional district and sessions judge. Vohra, who is now Ambassador to Afghanistan, said he obtained this information with officials in Pakistan at that time. Public Prosecutor Dalwinder Singh told the court that Pakistan’s ISI had helped Ansari get the passport.

Additional District Government Counsel Dalwinder Singh said, “Manpreet Singh Vohra had carried out the investigation into a Pakistani passport recovered from Faheem Ansari at the time of his arrest by the ATS and the sleuths of the special task force on February 10, 2008. At that time, Vohra was the deputy high commissioner of India in Islamabad.”

According to Singh, after the Mumbai attack, both India and Pakistan governments had exchanged the information through dossiers where it was revealed that Faheem Ansari had managed to get the Pakistani passport on fake identities. Ansari had been earlier accused of conducting reconnaissance for the Mumbai terror attacks of 2008 but was subsequently acquitted of those charges.

Several Naxal groups in Jharkhand were reported to have incurred losses to the tune of INR 800 million said a top Police officer at Ranchi District. The Naxal groups are desperate ever since the Narendra Modi-led Government had decided to demonetize INR 500 and 1000 currency notes from the midnight of November 8, 2016, which had an adverse impact on the activities of Naxal groups in the State, said the ADG, Jharkhand, R K Mallick. Quoting an intelligence report, he added, at least INR 800 million cash of the Naxal groups has thus been destroyed due to demonetisation. The Naxal outfits have weakened as their major economic system was destroyed post-demonetisation, which prompted the Naxals to indulge in looting cash in desperation, going against the Maoist ideology, Mallick claimed. However, the State Police was prepared to foil all their nefarious design, he said.

Police have received evidence that the CPI-Maoist, with the support of tribal people, took control of forest land, along Kerala and Tamil Nadu border, by cutting down hundreds of trees. A series of video clip, released by Police, show that the armed CPI-Maoist and tribal people are jointly removing trees in forest and installing CPI-Maoist flag in the area. Police suspect that the area shown in the video is Agali forest region of Palakkad District. According to Police, the visuals were recovered from the digital documents that were seized after the recent Police encounter with CPI-Maoist in Nilambur forest in which two CPI-Maoist leaders, Kuppu Devaraj and Ajitha, were killed.

A self styled ‘platoon commander’ and a cadre of the NDFB-IKS, identified as Danial Muchahary and Rahen Muchahary were arrested after an encounter with a joint team comprising the Police and the Army from Lawdangi area under Dhekiajuli Police station in Sonitpur District. Police recovered one 7.65 pistol, three round live cartridges, three mobile phones along with six SIM cards from the militants. Police sources said that Danial was the self styled ‘platoon commander’ of NDFB –IKS of ‘38 battalion’ of the outfit.

A suspected Bangladeshi citizen, identified as Sohail Ahmed alias Omar Nasser Saju was arrested by Cachar District Police at Sadhinbazar area in Cachar District. However, in a reply to a question about Sohail’s link with terrorist outfit JMB and also about his possible links behind the Holey Artisan Bakery in Gulshan Police Station of Dhaka, the Police said that nothing conclusive could be arrived at so far and they were investigating all possible angles.

A militant of PREPAK-Pro, identified as Kangjam Premananda (40) was arrested by a team of Imphal West District Police at Thangmeiband Hijam Leikai in Imphal West District. Two hand grenade and two mobile phones were recovered from the arrested militant. According to the Police sources, the hand grenades were meant to be exploded at MPSC office and also at the residences of some of its top officials and the militant was operating under one Lamtakpa alias Langamba of PREPAK-Pro. 

A Chinese hand grenade was recovered by Imphal West District Police at Suraj Paint Centre at Nagamapal in Imphal West District. No one has claimed responsibility for the act so far.

Self styled ‘chairman’ Helun Haokip of the militant outfit, KNLF, announced that his ‘organisation’ KNLF had been merged with another militant group, the UKLF.

The Court of CJM, Imphal East District remanded the UNC President Gaidon Kamei and Information Secretary Shangkhel Stephen to Police custody till January 11.

Three militant outfits of North East, KLO, NLFT and PDCK had set March 31 as ‘deadline’ for ‘Hindi speakers’ and Bengalis to ‘quit Kamatapur, Karbi-Longri and Tripura’ in an statement. The statement was signed by KLO ‘chairman’ Jiban Singh Koch, NLFT ‘organising secretary’ Seng-phul Borok and PDCK ‘chairman’ JK Lijang. The statement also condemned the killing of suspected NDFB-IKS, Ratna Narzary of Khunguri village of Chirang District on December 29 by SFs. According to the report, all these three militant groups are mentored by the NSCN-K and ULFA-I.

One civilian, identified as Athari Samson (54) and an AR trooper, identified as Bhupal Singh (42) were killed in an encounter with suspected militants at Khunthak village of Kasom Khullen sub-division in Kamjong District. Troops of 27 AR were going on foot for an operation when they were attacked by militants who opened indiscriminate fire at around 10.30 am. The AR troops too retaliated. The encounter left one AR trooper and another man dead.

A team of Imphal West District Police arrested a militant of KCP, identified as Akoijam Khamba Singh (45) from Bamon Kampu Mayai Leikai in Imphal East District. Three hand grenades, four detonators and a .32 pistol along with 2 live rounds were recovered from his possession. According to Police he joined the outfit in 2008.

January 3

The probe carried out by NIA into the January 2, 2016 Pathankot attack finds out that JeM had plans to attack a local police station too. An intermittent delay in reaching the Pathankot Air Force in Punjab had almost prompted JeM to change their plans and attack a local Police Station instead of the air force base. The information is part of several other conversations, accessed by NIA, which took place between the JeM attackers and their handlers based in Pakistan. The conversations also include chats which took place during and after the attack between JeM handlers and other individuals based in Pakistan.

According to the probe conducted by NIA, four attackers, who belonged to Pakistan based JeM, grew weary due to a delay and had spoken about their concern to Kashif Jan, a senior JeM member through a telephonic conversation. The attackers, all of whom were Pakistani nationals, had made calls to their handler to update him about their movement once they had crossed the border. At around 3.31 am on January 1, 2016 the handler, identified as Kashif, referred as Ustadji by the attackers, made a call on a phone which the attackers had snatched from Ikagar Singh, a taxi driver who was killed by the Pakistani nationals.

A CPI-Maoist ‘area commander’ carrying a reward of INR 1.5 million on his head and wanted in three States was shot dead in an encounter with Police and CRPF at the Ramtandi forest under Ghorabandha Police Station in Ghatshila sub-division of East Singhbhum District of Jharkhand. Supai Tudu, an ‘area commander’ of a faction of the CPI-Maoist, was found dead after an exchange of fire between security personnel and the Maoists. Tudu’s wife, Sonali Tudu, was arrested at the site after the incident.

A DRG jawan was injured in an exchange of fire with CPI-Maoist cadres in Bijapur District of Chhattisgarh. The incident occurred in evening in Basaguda Police Station area when a joint team of SFs was out on a anti-Naxal operation. A composite squad of DRG, STF and CoBRA had launched the operation to the interiors of Basaguda, around 450 kilometres away from Raipur, Police said. While the SFs were cordoning off a forested patch close to Tarrem area, they came under heavy fire from a group of ultras that led to the gun-battle. "A DRG jawan sustained bullet injuries on his leg in the incident. However, ultras soon escaped from the spot," the Police added.

A LeT militant identified as Abu Umar Khitab of Pakistan was killed in an encounter with SFs in Sopore area in Baramulla District. SFs had laid an ambush at Haritar in Sopore during the intervening night following information about movement of militants through the area, a Police official said. He said SFs on noticing suspicious movement in the wee hours challenged the persons who opened fire. "In the retaliatory firing, one terrorist was killed," the official said. The militant affiliated with LeT and was active for last four years. He was believed to part of the militant group, which escaped from the SFs cordon several times last month in Hajjan area of North Kashmir. Sources said that the militant was operating in Sopore, Hajin, Gunde Jehanghir and Shah Gund areas of North Kashmir and SFs were tracking his movement for long. They said one AK 47 rifle, one hand grenade, three magazines, 70 AK ammunition rounds, one I-com set, one compass, one bag and one torch was recovered from his possession.

A CRPF ASI was critically injured in a militant attack in Murran Chowk in Pulwama town in Pulwama District. The ASI identified as BN Thakur was hit by a bullet in his back and was shifted to army hospital for treatment. The firing caused panic in the township and senior Police and CRPF officers reached the spot immediately cordoned off the area and searches were conducted in the area but the militants managed to flee after carrying out the attack.

A search operation was launched by SFs in Kuta Satri forest area of Bandipora District, following an input about the presence of militants. The operation was, however, later called off due to heavy snowfall.

Investigating Officers of nine Police Stations of Kashmir valley are yet to recover, 63 rifles and 186 magazines looted by the militants and mob from 16 different locations, despite lapse of considerable period of time. According to the official data provided by the Home Department in the Legislative Assembly, 16 incidents of looting/snatching of rifles and magazines besides huge number of rounds took place under the jurisdiction of nine Police Stations in Kashmir valley during the period between January 1, 2016 and December 31, 2016. Of these incidents, maximum four incidents took place under the jurisdiction of DH Pora Police Station followed by Pulwama (three) and Kulgam and Shopian (two each). The other incidents took place under the jurisdiction of Batamaloo, Anantnag, Dooru, Chadoora and Budgam Police Stations. Giving gist of the cases, the Home Department said that in some cases the militants fired upon the Police personnel deployed in the general areas and decamped with their service rifles after killing them while as in other cases they attached the Police deployed for the security of political workers and looted their service rifles after eliminating or injuring them. In some other cases the militants even entered the guarded places and snatched rifles, magazines and rounds from the Police. The incidents of militants forcibly snatching the weapons from the Police without harming them physically were also reported from some parts of Valley.

According to the official data, five incidents of mob attacking guard posts and decamping with the weapons and arms during the period of unrest in Kashmir valley were reported from five different places. In all these 16 incidents of weapon looting, FIR under different sections of RPC and Arms Act were registered but till date no major headway has been made by the concerned Police Stations as a result of which neither the accused could be arrested nor looted weapons recovered. AK-47s, SLRs, INSAS Rifles, Pistols and Carbines were among the weapons looted by the militants and mob, the Home Department said in reply to the question of independent MLA, Er Abdul Rashid. According to the data, a total of 2690 cases of stone pelting were also registered during the period between January 1, 2016 and December 31, 2016. The maximum cases were registered in Sopore (492) followed by Srinagar (339) and Baramulla (318). The other stone pelting incidents were reported from Ganderbal (65), Budgam (163), Anantnag (271), Shopian (173), Pulwama (143), Kulgam (167), Awantipora (121), Bandipora (109), Kupwara (218) and Handwara (111).

In reply to question of Hakeem Mohammad Yaseen, the Minister Incharge Home said that during the recent unrest 2632 FIRs were registered and almost all are still under investigation. “Besides, 463 persons were detained under Public Safety Act out of which 145 were released and presently 318 are under detention”, the Minister added.

Replying to question of NC MLA, Mubarak Gul, the Government said that a total of 59 youths joined militant ranks after the killing of HM militant Burhan Wani in an encounter with Security Forces on July 8 last year. “As reported by CID Headquarters, 59 youth have joined militant ranks after 8th July, 2016”, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said in a written reply, adding the Government has notified a Surrender Policy which was superseded by Rehabilitation Policy to encourage the misguided youths and militants to abjure violence and accept the integrity of India and the Constitution.

At least 14 people were injured when Police resorted to force while dispersing a mob picketing Manipur Government offices in Senapati District headquarters. The incident occurred when about 300 people gathered and marched towards the barricades put up across the road leading to the Senapati District Administration Office before being stopped by security personnel. Under the aegis of UNC, the picketing of Manipur Government Offices in Naga Districts began from midnight of December 31.

Gunfire erupted in Ukhrul District, near the District Mini-Secretariat. According to sources, armed gunmen exchanged fire with security personnel manning the Mini-Secretariat. The firing which started around 9:00 pm lasted around half an hour. Casualty is not reported so far. The persons responsible for the firing also remain unknown till now.

In a joint operation by AR and Tezpur Police, one suspected individual was arrested along with arms from Barchola village in Dhekiajuli in Sonitpur District. One AK series rifle, two magazines and 21 live rounds were recovered from the arrestee.

One person, identified as Rajiv Rajkhowa was arrested by Pengaree Police following a public chastisement at Dwarmara village in Pengaree in Tinsukia District. The arrested person, Rajiv Rajkhowa, shot a local VDP member, identified as Umesh Rai, at his residence who narrowly escaped death. Then he was caught by the son of the victim with the help of the villagers and later handed him over to Pengaree Police. Local sources said that Rajiv Rajkhowa had served an extortion letter to Rai last year in the name of the ULFA. The Police recovered two handmade revolvers and a writing pad belonging to the ULFA from the arrestee.

Unidentified assailants fired at the residence of Prashanta Gogoi, President OBC wing of BJP, located at Milan Nagar in Dibrugarh District. However, no one was injured in the firing incident. At the time of the incident, Prashanta Gogoi who had joined the BJP few months back was stated to be in Guwahati for some personal work. The Police immediately rushed to the spot and reviewed the situation. No one has been arrested till the filing of this report.

AR arrested a Myanmar-trained NSCN-R militant, identified as ‘self-styled corporal’ Pingwang Kanglom in Changlang town in Changlang District. The militant had been involved in extortion activities in the District, sources in the paramilitary force said. A pistol and five rounds of live ammunition were recovered from him.

January 4

A suspected Naxal was killed in an exchange of fire with SFs in dense forest of Bijapur District of Chhattisgarh. "The skirmish took place late in afternoon in forest between Puvarti (Sukma District) and Kondapalli villages under Basaguda Police Station limits of Bijapur," Bijapur SP, K L Dhruv said. A joint team of CoBRA – a CRPF specialised unit, DRG and local Police had launched the Counter-Insurgency Operation in the jungles of Basaguda and Awapalli, he said. While SFs were cordoning off a restive pocket on Bijapur-Sukma border, they came under heavy fire from a group of armed naxals leading to a heavy gun-battle, the SP added. SDG (Anti-Naxal Operations), D M Awasthi, said that the operation was “intelligence based” and the recovery of the INSAS LMG was very significant for the Chhattisgarh Police”. 

Two members of New SPM were allegedly killed by the CPI-Maoist cadres at Pathal village in Chatra District of Jharkhand. The bodies were found near the Gaya-Chatra border and the two men, identified as Sanjay Singh Bhokta and Vijay Singh Bhokta, who were abducted from their house. Chatra, SP, Anjani Jha said that a CPI-Maoist poster, in which the murderers claim to represent the banned LWE faction, was found on the site of the incident. A total of four shots were fired, two on each of the victims, Jha added. Jha said, "It has been verified that one of the victims, Sanjay Singh, was an active member of New SPM and was involved in activities which might have led to a fight with the Maoists." Sources indicate that the New SPM group recently started as an offshoot of the CPI-Maoist and have been growingly active in the last few days.

The Police Department is fortifying 24 Police Stations in the areas affected by Naxalism in Telangana. The Government machinery in Telangana, particularly the Police Department, is anticipating trouble from the CPI-Maoist cadres in the coming days. New state-of-the-art Police Stations is being constructed at a total cost of INR 500 million. Each of these 24 Police Stations will have impenetrable fencing and reinforced sentry points, both at the entry point and on the rooftop, where armed Police personnel would keep guard round the clock, sources said. Further, the Government is developing two state-of-the-art Police Training Centers – one in Karimnagar District at a cost of INR 480 million; and the other one at Medchal in Medchal–Malkajgiri District, at a cost of INR 300 million where Police recruits would be trained to be battle-ready. Also, the Government is raising two IRBs in the State, the sources said. This being so, recruitment has slowly begun among CPI-Maoist circles.  The recruits are being trained in what is considered a safe bastion: Chhattisgarh. This time, the CPI- Maoist cadres will have good firepower, since they are getting the support of CCOMPOSA, sources said. DGP, Anurag Sharma recently said that they would not allow the Maoists to make a comeback in the State.

SFs arrested a LeT militant from Handwara area of North Kashmir in Kupwara District, who was planning to carry out attack on security convoys in the area. Police said that on specific information one LeT militant identified as Ashiq Ahmed alias Abu Haider was arrested by Handwara Police and 21 RR of army near Fruit Mandi crossing in Handwara in the District. “On sustained interrogation he disclosed that he was a close associate of Abu Bakar a LeT ‘commander’ killed in Sopore few days back. On further discloser the arrested militant said that in near future he was planning to attack security forces convoy in Handwara area”, Police said. Police said that huge cache of arms and ammunition was recovered from him. These include one AK-47 rifle, 3 Magazines with live cartridges, one Chinese Pistol with one Magazine, three Hand Grenades, one Magazine Pouch, one Map and one Haversack.

IG of CRPF, Zulfikar Hassan, said that militants take advantage of presence of common people on NH and at times escape after carrying out the attack. Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a function in South Kashmir, Hassan said that at times militants flee after carrying out an attack on the NH by taking advantage of common people and SFs avoid collateral damage. “The attacks on National Highway occur many times during a year. Many-a-times we are successful in killing those who attack. Sometimes due to presence of common people we don’t fire because that can result in collateral damage and we restrain ourselves. The militants sometimes take advantage of crowd and escape”, he said. Hassan said that at times militants manage to escape from the security but SFs make their efforts to prevent them from fleeing. “Sometimes the stone-pelting takes place so that militants manage to escape. But security forces, CRPF, Jammu and Kashmir Police try not to make it successful and sometimes we do manage to stop militants from escaping”, he said.

Manipur CM Okram Ibobi Singh met President Pranab Mukherjee to discuss the UMHA report to the EC that termed the law-and-order situation in the state as “grave”. Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Singh rubbished the report saying it “wrongly” concluded that the prevailing situation was “not conducive” to conduct free-and-fair polls there. However, just ahead of Ibobi’s meeting with the President, the EC declared that the Assembly election will be held in two phases — on March 4 and 8 — in Manipur. Ibobi, later, welcomed the decision. The CM said issues such as insurgency, blockades, strikes are not unique to Manipur but they affect the entire north-east and that even in 2012, the state Assembly polls were boycotted by hill and valley-based underground organisations including the PLA and the UNLF.

UNC- the apex body of the Nagas based in Manipur- said they would continue with the economic blockade despite the announcement of Manipur assembly elections by the EC. According to the UNC, elections cannot be held peacefully in the Naga-inhabited areas of Manipur until the prevailing problems are resolved. “The blockade will continue. Solving of Manipur’s problems has to be done through dialogue between the parties in conflict. So far, the government of Manipur has failed to respond politically. We have no other option but to intensify the blockade, no matter what the EC has announced regarding the polls in the state,” K.S. Paul, former President of the UNC, said. Paul - an active member of the UNC -said the Manipur Government has betrayed the Nagas of Manipur. “We have been betrayed by the Manipur government, as it did not consult us on the creation of seven new Districts out of our ancestral land. We do not know whether the situation will be conducive for holding free and fair elections in the Naga areas of the state,” said Paul.

Belagavi Police along with Assam Police arrested a suspected militant associated with NDFB at a sugar company in Belgaum District of Karnataka.

January 5

China dismissed as “untrue” allegations of double standards by India by blocking its bid to list JeM leader Masood Azhar as global terrorist by the UN, claiming that it had adopted a “just, objective and professional” attitude in deciding the matter. “With regard to the listing matter of the Security Council 1267 committee the so called double standards adopted by China on this relevant issue is not true. We take action based on solid evidence that is the standard upheld by us,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said.

Intelligence agencies are weighing inputs indicating the radical elements within the proscribed SIMI are forging links with similarly minded groups within the recently banned IRF and may lead to the birth of a new radical outfit. Such inputs, described by sources as “very disturbing”, have been pouring in for more than a month ever since the Central Government banned IRF led by controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik. The IB is likely to issue a note to State intelligence agencies regarding these developments shortly. Top sources disclosed that over the past couple of months, person-to-person contact and group interactions between members of the banned groups have been taking place lately. ''Similar inputs have been coming from certain areas that are known to be breeding grounds for militants in different states. Some political parties, which used to sympathise with SIMI, are now sympathising with IRF too,'' said one senior official.

While IRF, an NGO run by Salafist preacher Zakir Naik, was banned for five years in November 2016, SIMI was 16 years ago and still has a large number of supporters. Sources in the intelligence agencies said they consider SIMI as a ''very active'' group despite the ban. Though SIMI members attending the taqreer (speeches) of Zakir Naik is nothing new, intelligence sources say there is electronic evidence of increasing interaction between members of these two groups, especially since the IRF ban.

Interestingly, just days after IRF was banned, the Kerala-based Islamic fundamentalist organisation PFI organized massive rallies in different parts of the country in support of Zakir Naik. A majority of PFI members are actually from SIMI. “Since SIMI is banned, the members work in different outfits. But SIMI is alive and kicking,'' said a senior official. Sources said inputs indicate that these radical interactions could lead to the formation of a new radical outfit similar to IM which was involved in a series of bomb blasts across the country since it was founded by Abdus Subhan Qureshi in 2010. IM mostly comprised of lower-tier SIMI members.  The change in name was widely seen as a change in tactics by SIMI members. Till date, while senior SIMI leaders are still available, there are minimal inputs about the cadres. “The same tactic is being used again. Only this time, SIMI has IRF to look to. IRF has dedicated members across the length and breadth of the country, which will come in handy and this is enough for extremist elements in both groups to form a new group and continue with their subversive activities,'' another official said.

Members of NOJ, left a note threatening to kill Pipra (Supaul District) of Bihar, MLA, Shyam Babu Prasad Yadav if he did not quit the BJP by FebruaryNOJ is a splinter group of the CPI-Maoist. The group has sought an extortion of INR 500,000 from Yadav.

The ‘deputy commander’ of Kasansur Dalam Jyoti Gawade was killed by Gadchiroli District Police's C-60 Commandos at Boteyjhari and Badhgaon forest in Gadchiroli District of Maharashtra. Jyoti is alleged to have led the arson attack at Surjagarh on December 23, 2016. 76 trucks, 3 JCBs and 1 motorcycle were burnt by the Naxals. Shivaji Bodkhe, IG of State ANO, said that Jyoti was trying to break through the Police cordon when she received bullet injuries in retaliatory fire. "Police have also seized Jyoti's .303 rifles," he added. On January 4, the Police had cornered Naxals at Nihalkai forest near Gyarapati from where two .12 bore rifles were seized. After intensifying the search operations, the Police spotted Jyoti's Dalam following which a battled ensued. Jyoti alias Sagobai Narsingh, was earlier ‘commander’ of Surjagarh LGS which was later amalgamated with Kasansur Dalam.

A surrendered Naxalite was allegedly killed by CPI-Maoist cadres in Dhanora Tehsil of Gadchiroli District of Maharashtra. The victim Sukhram Lalchu Wadde (35) was a member of Naxal militia, who had surrendered before the Police in July 2016, a senior Police official said. The Naxals attacked Sukhram at Kehakavi village and murdered him using an axe, he said. "The CPI-Maoist cadres were angry as Sukhram had turned himself in before the police," the official added. Further the officials said last week (December 29, 2016) three villagers were killed allegedly by Naxalites in Aheri and Korchi tehsils in Gadchiroli on the suspicion of they being ‘informers’. The victims were identified as Laccha Bande Madavi (36) resident of Rumalkasa, Patali Doge Atram (36), resident of Gurja, and Talwarsha Kunjram, resident of Korchi.

A militia member of the CPI-Maoist, who was involved in the Chamundia beat-house torching case in July 2016, was arrested by Police in Senepuri forest near Badasilinga in Nayagarh District of Odisha. The arrested Maoist, Santosh Majhi (35), had been working with the Kalahandi-Kandhamal-Boudh-Nayagarh (KKBN) division of the CPI-Maoist for the past three years. Two associates of Majhi escaped during the raid. One of them has been identified as Bipin, while the other’s identity is yet to be established. Majhi and a dozen of his associates had damaged the beat house and set fire to a jeep which was being used for anti-poaching operations in Nayagarh Forest Division (NFD).

The UKLF categorically stated that it was not involved in any manner in the ambush against State Police ahead of CM Okram Ibobi Singh’s visit to Tengnoupal (Tengnoupal District) near Lokchao along Imphal-Moreh highway on December 15. Speaking to a team of media persons at an undisclosed location in Chandel district, UKLF ‘home secretary’ Daniel Thadou said that the KNLF ‘chairman’ had merged with the UNLF on his own volition. Daniel contended that the UKLF was not involved in the Lokchao ambush, and the State Police and its intelligence agencies would know the truth.

Earlier KNLF ‘general secretary’ Lalmoi Haokip alleged that the Lokchao ambush was carried out by UKLF at the instruction of NSCN-IM. Flatly rejecting Lalmoi’s allegation, Daniel said that the same allegation was baseless and fabricated. The UKLF has a suspicion that the Lokchao ambush was carried out by a gang of criminals led by Lalmoi, Daniel said.

January 6

As many as nine vehicles were set on fire by about 30 cadres of the CPI-Maoist in Gondahur Police Station limits in Kanker District of Chhattisgarh. SP, ML Kotwani said the Maoists set ablaze eight tractors and one excavator. He said the Maoists had threatened to stop the road laying work in between Maharashtra’s Pendi village to Chhattisgarh's border. After the threat, the contractors from Maharashtra had parked their vehicles in the territory of Chhattisgarh, Kotwani said, adding that Police force was sent to the place of occurrence.

Five Naxals were arrested with arms and ammunition from Gumla and Garhwa Districts of Jharkhand. Two cadres of the PLFI were arrested from Palkot in Gumla District while three cadres of the TPC were arrested in Ranka, Garhwa District. A country made gun, bullets and mobile phones were found on PLFI cadres Vinay Gope and Ravi Gope while Police recovered 25 kilograms explosive from TPC cadres Rajesh Yadav and his aides Sunil Singh Kharwar and Mehboob Alam. Gumla SP, Chandan Kumar Jha said Vinay and Ravi had demanded INR 300,000 levy from a petrol bunk owner on December 30, 2016. In Garhwa, Police first arrested Rajesh. During interrogation, he revealed about his aides who were arrested from Ramkanda village. Police seized mobile phones, pamphlets and posters. TPC and PLFI are splinter groups of the CPI-Maoist.

The UMHA flagged the operational efficiency of SFs in the Naxal-affected areas as one of its biggest achievements during a presentation before PM Narendra Modi. The Ministry informed Modi that since the NDA Government came to power in May 2014, there had been a 45 per cent increase in the efficiency of Central Forces (CFs) in operations against the Naxals. In a presentation made by Home Secretary, Rajiv Mehrishi, Modi and other officials were informed that the number of Naxal cadres killed in 2016 had been the highest ever in six years. Eighty-Four cadres of the CPI-Maoist were killed in 2015 and in 2016, the number swelled to 218, which was an increase of 160 per cent. There was also an increase in the number of Police encounter from 237 in 2015 to 316 in 2016. UHM Rajnath Singh told in a press conference earlier this week that demonetization had increased the problems of CPI-Maoist and that they had weakened. The EFC has already given the go-ahead for an ambitious road project in the 44 worst Naxal-affected Districts. Under this project, the Government proposes to construct 5,412 km of roads and 126 bridges and it would cost INR 117.25 million. The Government is redrawing the ‘Red Corridor’ — the area affected by LWE — and may soon take off 20 Districts from the list of Naxal-affected areas. The 106 Districts which span 10 States — Bihar, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Telangana, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh — constitute the Red Corridor. Of these, 44 Districts are said to be the worst affected. India has a total of 683 Districts.

Al-Badr terrorist Muzzafar Ahmed, who had links with LeT, was gunned down by the SFs after heavy exchange of fire in Budgam District. Ahmed, who was wanted in several cases, was earlier associated with LeT. Also, a Policeman sustained critical injuries during the encounter.

The call traffic between hawala agents in India dropped almost by half post demonetisation, says a recent assessment by the central intelligence agencies. Payments to the end beneficiary of hawala deals are traditionally in cash, with INR 500 and INR 1,000 being the favoured denominations. The demonetisation of these high-value notes on November 9 severely affected hawala operators, and going solely by call traffic, their business may be down by 50%, said an intelligence source. Terror funds are mostly sourced in counterfeit currency, comprising high-quality fake notes that Indian agencies suspect are printed at the Pakistan government printing press in Quetta and its security press at Karachi. Given this fact and the drop in hawala transactions, demonetisation has dried up funds used for organised stone-pelting in J&K and paying overground terror supporters in the State. Intelligence officials claim that terrorism-related violence in J&K dipped by 60% post the cash ban, with only one major blast reported from the valley in December. An intelligence official claimed that apart from organised stone-pelting, a direct casualty of demonetisation in J&K was the overground network of terror facilitators. "The overground support base of terrorists depends on instant cash payments. A weakened OGW network due to demonetisation has resulted in several successful counterterrorist operations in the Valley over the past several weeks," said the officer.

A Field Assistant of Veterinary Department, identified as Ds Stephen (45) was shot by one unidentified assailant at Maringphai village, near Pallel in Tengnoupal District. Stephen who sustained bullet injuries on the calf and thigh had been taken to Jeevan Hospital, Kakching, and then shifted to a hospital of Imphal. According to the sources, it is not clear who the assailants are and what is the motive so far.

The ‘chairman’ of the KNLF wrote to the chairman of the JMG of the SoO, to delist the outfit from the KNO as it had merged with the UKLF. In the written communication sent to the chairman of the JMG, the ‘chairman’ of the KNLF said that all former members of the KNLF including the 'c in c’ had already been absorbed by the UKLF and hence to instruct the KNO not to mention KNLF or use the name of KNLF.

One militant of ULFA-I, identified as Lakheswar Baruah alias Lavang Axom was arrested by Bordumsa Police in association with Indian Army at Kathgalguri near Bordumsa in Tinsukia District. 

In a statement, the NSCN-IM strongly objected to India's decision to fence the borders between Myanmar and Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram. In the statement, NSCN-IM said that such ‘artificial boundary fencing imposed upon the Naga people’ was against the will of the people and was gross violation of human rights. Other Naga groups like, NNC and ENDO were also against the fencing.

Combined team of Bishnupur District Police commandos and AR troopers recovered a 9 mm carbine machine gun along with one magazine from an abandoned Bajaj Discover bike at Torbung in Bishnupur District. However, the assailant, who was seen coming out from Torbung bazar Mamang Leikai with that bike and abandoned it at Torbung auto shed managed to escape.

January 7

Describing the counter-terrorism cooperation between India and the US under the eight years of Barack Obama administration as “incredibly successful”, Peter Lavoy, Senior Director for South Asian Affairs at the National Security Council, White House, has said this has not only “diminished the threat” of terrorism in the two countries, but also foiled several terror plots. “I can tell you quite definitively that due to our partnerships, several terrorism plots were foiled. Indian lives and American lives were saved because of this partnership,” said Peter Lavoy. “So it’s a very significant development and I think, it can continue,” he added.

International radical outfit Street Daawah has opened offices in Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Chennai to recruit non-Muslims, including those from the IT hubs in these cities, for enlisting them into suicide missions. The outfit had begun its operations in the UK and Australia in 2012 following which a number of youths were radicalised with presentation of concocted forms of Islam. In the wake of the outfit’s activities, a few Indians, including Indian- origin British national Siddarth Dhar, joined the Islamic State (IS). Dhar is also believed to be the new Jihadi John, a masked executioner for the IS whose videos relating to mass executions have been released by the Caliphate-seeking terror outfit after the liquidation of the original Jihadi John whose real name was Mohammad Emwazi, a British origin IS executioner. Many of the Street Daawah cadres have been known to have either joined the IS ranks or emerged as suicide bombers for them. As many as 25 suicide bombings have been committed globally by the Street Daawah cadres during the last few years.

India and Portugal called upon the global community to avoid double standards in addressing terror and to strengthen cooperation in combating international terrorism with zero tolerance towards it. “They underlined that states should not support any terror entity including ‘non-state actors’ on any grounds and that violent extremism fueled by misuse of internet and the social media needs to be countered. Similarly, networks of terrorist financing and terrorist infrastructure should be dismantled,” said a joint statement issued after talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Portuguese counterpart, Antonio Costa.

Three Maoists, two of them carrying cash reward on their heads, were arrested from separate places in Dantewada District of Chhattisgarh. While a ‘commander’ rank cadre identified as Vetti Varsa was arrested from Katekalyan Police Station limits, two others were arrested from Kotwali Police Station area. Of them, Varsa was active as Jan militia ‘commander’ under Katekalyan area committee of Maoists, he said, adding that the rebel was carrying a reward of INR 100,000 on his head. Two others arrested were identified as Masa alias Kumma Madvi, head of Janatana Sarkar group and Panda, a member of the same group, he added. The two were tasked with the recruitment of fresh cadres for the banned outfit, the official said, adding Masa was also carrying a reward of INR 100,000 on his head.

Suspected cadres of the CPI-Maoist set ablaze three construction vehicles at Ruam village near Chaibasa in East Singhbhum District of Jharkhand. The attack was a reaction to the construction company's failure in paying levy. The damaged vehicles included two bulldozers and a mixer owned by RKS constructions. SP, Anish Gupta said, "We are tracing the rebels involved in the incident. The construction of this road, which had begun in 2014, has suffered repeated setbacks due to Maoist activities. Last year, Maoists had burnt vehicles involved in the construction of the same road after the company refused to pay levy."

Khunti Police conducted an operation, led by SP, Ashwini Jha, at Kuisar village forest in Khunti District of Jharkhand. Police had got a tip-off about a meeting of the PLFI in the forest, 25 kilometres from Khunti. Three country-made carbines, one regular carbine, two double barrel breach loading guns, three magazines and two haversacks were seized in the raid. Jha said, "We reached the location at 3:30 am and discovered a rebel camp. However, the rebels escaped by the time we reached the camp. We chased them for half a kilometer but failed to catch them. Maoists Jidan Gudiya, Prabhu Sahai Bodra, Bagrai Champiya, Pattu Naag and others were among those who fled.'' PLFI is a splinter group of the CPI-Maoist.

Maoist ‘zonal commander’ Dimba Pahan (58), who carried INR 1.5 million reward on his head, surrendered before Khunti SP, Ashwini Kumar Sinha at his office. A native of Barigarha village in Arki area of Khunti of Jharkhand, Dimba joined the Maoists in 1998. He was involved in several cases of Ranchi, Khunti, Saraikela-Kharsawan and West Singhbhum Districts, including the killing of former Tamar MLA, Ramesh Singh Munda, Bundu DSP, Pramod Kumar Gupta and special branch inspector Francis Indewar. He also robbed an ICICI Bank cash van of over INR 50.7 million and 1.2 kilograms gold in May, 2008.

East Singhbhum District (Jharkhand) Police have intensified search operations at Ghurabandha and Dumaria in Ghatshila and deployed SFs along NH-33 in wake of a bandh call by Maoists on January 10 to protest killing of Supaye Tuddu on January 3.

Normal life in Jammu and Kashmir was affected due to shutdown called by separatists. Shops and commercial establishments remained closed across Srinagar and public transport was partially off the roads. The private vehicles were, however, plying normally. Street vendors had set-up their stalls at multiple places in the city’s civil line areas.

A complete shutdown was observed in Sopore town of Baramulla District, to mourn the killing of senior militant ‘commander’ associated with Al Badr Mujahideen, Muzzafar Ahmad Naiko alias Muz Molvi, who was killed on January 6 in an encounter. During the shutdown, hundreds of security men were deployed to prevent outbreak of protests across the Sopore town.

Two CRPF jawans, identified as constables Visvendar Jat and Brajesh Singh, were injured one of them seriously, in a powerful blast in Imphal West District. Police said the two constables were passing by in a bicycle when an IED planted by the wayside at Naoremthong Khullem Leikai under Lamphel Police Station exploded. The IED was detonated by suspected militants using a remote control device, they added. No outfit has claimed responsibility so far.

The UNC decided to continue its economic blockade during Manipur polls which will be held in the first week of March. The UNC also decided to ‘intensify’ the economic blockade in the meeting held at Senapati Town in Senapati District. 

January 8

The Q Branch of CID Police arrested an advocate from S. Alangulam village in Madurai District of Tamil Nadu on the charge of having links with CPI-MaoistThe Q Branch CID Police had been conducting surveillance on advocate A. Murugan ever since the two alleged CPI-Maoist cadres – Kala (53) and Chandra (51) – were arrested in Karur District on July 2016. Sources said that Murugan’s younger brother, Velmurugan (35), an active CPI-Maoist cadre, was accused in two naxal cases in Varushanadu in Theni District and Uthankarai in Coimbatore District. The advocate used to appear for CPI-Maoist in court. The Q Branch CID team seized a huge quantity of homeopathic medicines allegedly in possession of the advocate, which, sources claimed, were being supplied to some Maoists. A few printed literatures relating to Maoists were also alleged to have been recovered.

The Jharkhand Police are now concentrating their offensive on the CPI-Maoist ‘area commander’ Kanhu Munda in East Singhbhum District of Jharkhand. To revive people's confidence in the administration, Police have decided to hold a crime meeting at Gian village in Ghatshila subdivision. East Singhbhum Rural SP, Shailendra Burnwal said they had chosen Naxal-hit Gian for the meeting because Kanhu Munda hailed from the village. He added, "We are already carrying out anti-insurgency operations in Ghurabandha and Gian. The crime meeting at Kanhu Munda's village will surely make a difference among people who may have been associated with the Naxalites because they are petrified of Munda”. Police sources said there were four to five armed naxals in Munda's squad. "We are working on a plan in which villagers will no longer co-operate with the CPI-Maoist like they have been doing so far," SP Burnwal said. Munda's squad is active in the Ghurabandha region, which shares border with Mayurbhanj District of Odisha. Police will also hold a janata durbar for villagers of Gian. "At the durbar, local problems - including the ones that have cropped up owing to Naxalite activities - will be heard and resolved, if possible," the SP said.

UHM Rajnath Singh held a review meeting on Naxalism situation in Jharkhand with senior Police officials of CRPF and the State Police at Eastern Sector Headquarters of CRPF in Ranchi District of Jharkhand. A senior Police official told, “A demand was raised before the UMHA to increase the strength of SFs in the state to carry out anti-Naxal operations in the state, replying to which, he said that the demand will be taken up only after UP Election.” The State Police also requested the UHM to recommence the fund allocation for setting up of STF against terrorism which has been discontinued for quite some time. With security advisor K Vijay Kumar and CM Raghubar Das in tow, Singh claimed that the Centre's demonetization move has broken the backs of banned LWE organizations like PLFI and CPI-Maoist. Maintaining that dialogue was the only means to resolve differences, the minister urged armed groups to come to the discussion table and place their demands instead of 'stopping the development of the poor'. Singh, who inaugurated the Eastern Sector Headquarters of CISF in the state capital, said increasing the 'technological and core competence' of the forces is the need of the hour. The new Eastern Sector Headquarters in Ranchi's Tiril spreads over 158 acres. This new headquarters has been relocated from Bihar for better synergy, CISF Director General OP Singh said.

The dead bodies of the abducted civilians identified as, the village chief of N-Gamnom village S Otkhomang (57) and church chairman Tilpao Haokip (51) were found in Nungkham Gamnom Village in Manipur’s newly-created Tengnoupal District. Earlier, on January 6, these two civilians were abducted by some unidentified assailants and they were taken toward Indo-Myanmar border. According to the sources, the assailants also fired some rounds while taking away the duo. The sources also added that fatal bullet injuries were seen on the dead bodies. Regarding this sensitive issue, a joint meeting attended by members of various organisations including Hill Tribal Council, Meitei Council Moreh, Kuki Chiefs Association (Moreh Block) and women leaders was held and the meeting resolved to impose a bandh along Moreh road on January 9.

A hand grenade planted by unidentified assailants was recovered at the residence of Bishnupur DSP, Y Sushil’s wife at Thangmeiband Hijam Dewan Leikai in Imphal West District. After recovering the grenade, the bomb disposal squad of Manipur Police exploded it safely at a dumping site at Lamphelpat,

The Additional Secretary for Mizoram’s Home department Lalbiakzama said that the proposed repatriation of over 32,800 Brus lodged in six relief camps in Tripura was scheduled to begin from the second week of February, 2017. Lalbiakzama attended a meeting between the UMHA and Mizoram Government in New Delhi over the issue of the repatriation of the 5,413 Bru families.

One cadre of the Lamyanba Khuman faction of KCP-MC militant, identified as Kangabam Chaoba alias Mohen (63), who was involved in placing a hand grenade at the office of Pandam, an evening daily on December 26, 2016 was arrested by Imphal West District Police at Sagolband Kangabam Leikai area in Imphal West District. One Chinese hand grenade along with detonator and three demand letters were recovered from the arrested militant. The militant disclosed that he had been working under the command of self styled ‘commander’ Laishram Mangoljao alias Lamyanba Khuman of the militant group who was staying in Nepal. He also disclosed that he collected one Chinese hand grenade from another militant, AK Khamba (48) who was recently arrested by Imphal East District commandos.

A militant of NDFB-IKS, identified as Dhananjay Boro alias B.Dahal Thungri (32) was arrested by the Police along with Indian Army at Shantipur area under Runikhata Police Station in Chirang District. One 9mm Pistol, one magazine and 4 rounds of ammunition were recovered from the arrestee. The Chirang District SP Shankar Raimedhi said that the militant was a trained NDFB-IKS cadre of 38th batch and after training he had been operating in Baksa District. But he was on the run after anti-militancy operation was intensified in the state.

January 9

Three civilians working as labourers were killed in a pre-dawn terror attack by militants on a GREF camp near LoC in Akhnoor sector of Jammu District. Two or more militants attacked the GREF camp around 1 AM near LoC in Battal village, sources said. Militants likely infiltrated from across the border to carry out the terror attack, sources said. In the attack, three civilians were killed, they said, adding that the victims were working as labourers with GREF.

Four persons, including a woman, were arrested along with FICNs with a face value of INR 41,000 in Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh. The four came under Police scanner when their vehicle was checked, SP (Rural) Vinit Bhatnagar said. "Twenty fake notes in denomination of 2,000, a Rs 100 note, two pistols and a car have been seized from them," he added.

The UMHA reviewed the security situation in poll-bound Punjab and alerted the state Police on possible attempts by Pakistan’s ISI to foment trouble. Punjab will also see the largest deployment of SFs out of the 85000 Central Armed Police Forces personnel sanctioned by the UMHA for Assembly polls in five states. The UMHA asked the state Police to be on alert for communal incidents triggered by desecration of religious books, as had happened in 2015. The role of Pakistan was suspected in the incident. The BSF has been asked to step up vigil and keep a close tab on the activities along the border with Pakistan.

Islamic State (IS) is spreading its activities to Andhra Pradesh, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu said. "ISIS..Slowly it is establishing its activities. If you sanction Rapid Action Force, it will go a long way to control ISIS," Chandrababu told UHM Rajnath Singh. Chandrababu also wanted an additional battalion of CRPF for the state "to face Left Wing Extremism".

Two persons, identified as Ashish (23) and Krishan Bhardwaj (25) were arrested on January 9 for allegedly printing FICNs of INR 500 and INR 2000 denominations and circulating them in weekly markets in southwest Delhi. Police also recovered FICNs worth of INR 6,10,500 from them. The team probing the matter found that a syndicate, operating in Uttam Nagar, Dwarka among others, is involved in printing and circulating fake currency in the market to hamper country’s economy, DCP-(Southwest), Surender Kumar said.

The UMHA reviewed the security situation in poll-bound Punjab and alerted the State Police on possible attempts by Pakistan’s ISI to foment trouble. UMHA asked the State Police to be on alert for communal incidents triggered by desecration of religious books, as had happened in 2015. The role of Pakistan was suspected in the incident. The BSF has been asked to step up vigil and keep a close tab on the activities along the border with Pakistan. The meeting at UMHA was attended by Punjab DGP Suresh Arora. Punjab will also see the largest deployment of Security Forces out of the 85000 CAPF personnel sanctioned by the UMHA for Assembly polls in five states. “We expect violence only in Punjab and Manipur and are taking adequate measures,” said a senior UMHA official.

Even as Andhra Pradesh DGP, N Sambasiva Rao, recently claimed that the CPI-Maoist numbers have dwindled specially after the major encounter at Ramaguda in Bejjangi area in Odisha in October 2016, the CPI-Maoist is reportedly planning to set up a 'Janatana Sarkar' in the AOB. Despite losing ground in places like Palnadu and the South Andhra Districts like Krishna and West Godavari in the last two decades, Maoists have till date managed to retain their hold in the AOB Districts like East Godavari and Visakhapatnam. According to sources, members of the division committee and red guerrillas have been continuously conducting meetings in the AOB villages. 

UHM Rajnath Singh has said the Centre would establish Greyhounds Centre, sanction RAF and give one more CRPF battalion to curb terrorist and Naxal activities in Andhra Pradesh. UHM Singh laying the foundation stone for the construction of the campus for the NDRF 10th Battalion, at Kondapavuluru village in Gannavaram mandal, at a cost of INR 2 billion, said: “The Home Ministry has sanctioned more CRPF personnel for Andhra Pradesh and instructions have been given in this regard. Once elections are over in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and three other States the force will come to the State. The AP Government has sent a requisition for RAF and for setting up of Greyhounds, and we will look into the matter.” The Greyhounds was doing good work in Telangana State (TS) in controlling the LWE, and the Greyhounds Centre would be on par with TS, UHM Singh said. 

UHM Rajnath Singh has said that the menace of CPI-Maoist activities and infiltration into northeastern States came down drastically. Further he said that LWE declined by 55 per cent. Infiltration to northeastern States also decreased by over 70 per cent, he asserted.

A highly volatile situation was witnessed in the whole of Senapati town in Senapati District, following the arrest of leaders of ANSAM by AR. According to the report, ANSAM President Seth Shatsang, Finance Secretary of the association Joseph Adani and Executive Secretary AC Thotso were arrested by the AR personnel from Taphou area of Senapati town while they were enforcing the economic blockade. However they were released after the intervention of the Naga people.

After the arrest of the militant of Lamyanba Khuman faction of KCP-MC on January 8 by Manipur Police, who suspected to be involved in planting a hand grenade at the office of Pandam, an evening daily on December 26, 2016, a spokesperson of AR claimed that CorCom, an apex body of six outfits of Manipur responsible for the threatening of the local editors.

Sources in Assam Police said that at a time when majority of Karbi militant outfits were joining the peace process, PDCK was trying to spread its tentacles in the hill District. The source said that formed under the guidance of I.K. Songbijit, who was earlier the hardliner leader of NDFB-IKS, PDCK has reportedly launched a recruitment drive in the region. The source said, "Ever since the genocide of Adivasis in 2014, Songbijit got reportedly unpopular among the Bodos for his barbaric ways. Sidelined and pushed to Myanmar, the rebel leader formed PDCK with Karbi youths drawn from the NDFB faction." Many Karbi youths were recruited in the NDFB-IKS faction when Songbijit was heading it and Police suspect that these youths helped him to form the new outfit. According to the source, there are around 60 cadres under IK Songbijit in Myanmar training camps. The PDCK is talking about ‘sovereignty’ and it is backed by NSCN-K and ULFA-I, the source added.

The militant group, NSCN-R, in a statement, opposed the proposed Pangsha fencing (in the border of India and Myanmar) by India and Myanmar Government in the Nagaland. The statement said that ‘dividing the Nagas’ is ‘highly questionable and unacceptable.’

January 10

A special MCOCA court issued a production warrant against IM ‘co-founder’ Yasin Bhatkal and six others in connection with the July 13, 2011 Mumbai triple blasts case. “The court issued a production warrant against Yasin Bhatkal, who is presently lodged in Cherlapally central prison in Hyderabad,” an ATS official said. The official added that the court also issued warrants against three other accused lodged in the same jail. “Apart from them, production warrants were also issued for an accused lodged in Tihar jail in New Delhi and two others in Parappana Agrahara central jail in Bangalore,” the official added. Special MCOCA judge V V Patil directed that all the seven accused be brought before him on January 27.

Five CPI-Maoist cadres, including two ‘commander-level’ cadres, were killed in two separate exchanges of fire during an operation launched by Chhattisgarh Police in Narayanpur District of Chhattisgarh. Senior officials, however, said that one DRG trooper was killed in the first exchange of fire with the Maoist cadres. Teams with close to 400 SFs entered the jungles in an area that is home to CPI-Maoist military company number two. D M Awasthi, Special Director General, anti-Maoist operations, “The operation was launched on a specific intelligence input about the presence of CPI-Maoist cadres in the area. In the first exchange of fire in the morning in Irpenar, four CPI-Maoist cadres were killed. One trooper was also hurt and evacuated, but he unfortunately passed away.” Intermittent firing continued. In the second exchange of fire, this time in the adjoining Kanker District’s Koylibeda area, one CPI-Maoist cadre was killed and an AK-47 recovered from his possession. The CPI-Maoist cadres killed in the first exchange of fire have been identified as Tirupati, ‘Divisional Commander’, East Bastar division, Ratna Markam, ‘medical in-charge’, company number 6, Shyamu Yadav of company number 6 and Mangalram Salam, a Janmilitia member from Irpenar. The body recovered in the second encounter has been identified as that of Roshan, ‘divisional commander’ of the North Bastar division. “It is clear that there has been a big loss to the CPI-Maoist cadres in this encounter. We have recovered the bodies, but our personnel have narrated stories of the CPI-Maoist cadres dragging away other members of their party under the cover of LMG fire. This indicates that these could be senior cadre,” Awasthi added.

SFs have recovered and defused as many as nine IEDs allegedly planted by CPI-Maoist in restive Sukma District of Chhattisgarh. The explosives were planted near a culvert on a kuccha road between Bhejji and Injram villages under Bhejji Police Station limits, according to Sukma SP, Indira Kalyan Elesela.

Cadres of the PLFI attacked workers and set ablaze equipment at a pipeline laying site of IOC in Khunti District of Jharkhand. PLFI is a splinter group the CPI-Maoist. Armed PLFI cadres arrived at the site near Karo River on Tapkara-Rania Road under Tapkarao outpost late last night, beat up some labourers and set the equipment on fire. Two tractors, a dumper, an earth moving machine, two generator sets and a jointer machine used by a Bengaluru-based company hired by IOC were set ablaze.  SFs have launched a search operation to track down the Naxals. DGP, D K Pandey directed the Police to provide security to ensure completion of the work as well as other development works in Naxal-affected areas after he had a meeting with the District Armed Police, CRPF and Intelligence officials. Pandey said that Naxal and extremist activities would be wiped out from the state in 2017.

Five Naxals from different outfits were arrested along with arms and ammunition from Palamau and Garhwa Districts of Jharkhand. Umesh Paswan and Shyamdeo Singh Kharwar, and TPC-II member Satyendra Singh were arrested from different parts of Palamau. Shiv Kumar Korba and Mukhdeo Choudhary were arrested from Ramkanda area in Garhwa. TPC is a splinter group of the CPI-Maoist while TPC-II, a splinter group of TPC. SFs have recovered a country made pistol, cartridges, five sets of camouflaged uniforms, mobile phones, TPC pamphlets and a motorcycle from their possession. 

Naxals belonging to JSJMM attacked a road construction site in Bharno, Gumla District of Jharkhand.

Ahead of the process of filing of nomination papers for the three-tier panchayat elections, the CPI-Maoist has warned the tribals of Malkangiri District of Odisha, to abstain from the poll. More than 500 tribal residents of Ralegada panchayat, on the other side of cut-off Chitrakonda reservoir, took out a protest rally and dared the Government to hold elections in the area. The villagers, under the aegis of ‘Malkangiri Zilla Adivasi Rayat Kuli Sangha’, a frontal organisation of CPI-Maoist, organised a meeting at Ralegada panchayat, which was also attended by top Maoist leader Raman. Shouting slogans against the Government, they protested the BJD’s failure to provide basic needs to the villagers over the years. The Maoist-supported villagers declared to boycott the panchayat election over the issue. At the meeting, which continued for more than an hour, the rebel leaders have threatened that those who participate in the poll process will be punished in a ‘Praja Court’. The electorates have been threatened that their thumbs would be chopped off if they dare to go for voting. 

A top LeT militant was killed in a gun battle in Bandipora District. SFs including 13-RR of army and SOG of JKP, Bandipora, cordoned off Parray Mohalla Hajan in the District. A LeT militant, who was hiding in a house opened fire on the troops, leading to a gun battle in which he was shot dead by the troops. After the gun battle during searches one AK 47, three AK Magazines, three hand grenades, one radio set, one pouch, one matrix sheet and 200 AK rounds were recovered from the encounter site. The militant was identified as Abu Maviya of LeT.

SFs including 55 RR and SOG Shopian cordoned off Heff Shermal in Shopian District. There are seven militants of LeT from the village and SFs had information about their movement in the village. However, the operation was later called off and no one was arrested. 

SFs including 50 RR, 183 Battalion of CRPF and SOG Kakapora cordon off Kandi Zal area of Pampore in Pulwama District. Sources said that the SFs had information about presence of Reyaz Dar of LeT and his associates in the village. However, the operation was later called off. 

SFs including 55 RR and SOG Awantipora cordon off Khandaypora, Awantipora in Pulwama District. They had information about presence of Reyaz Naiku of HM and his associates in the village. However, the operation was later called off. 

SFs including 42 RR and SOG Awantipora cordon off Batpora, Noorpora, Tral in Awantipora area of Pulwama District. They had information about presence of some militants in the area. The troops also cordoned off Ratsuna in Tral area of Awantipora. However, the operations at these places were later called off.

A soldier was injured in a mine explosion in forward area of Mankote sector in Poonch District. Official sources said that Naik Deepak Singh of 15 Mahar Regiment received serious injuries in his legs when a land mine exploded as he over stepped it while patrolling. The injured soldier was rushed to unit hospital and then shifted to Military Hospital, Rajouri.

Unidentified assailants hurled nine petrol bombs at the resident of Tamenglong DC, M Luikham in Tamenglong District. Out of nine, five bombs exploded, but no injuries were reported. According to the report, the guards at the residence of M Luikham opened several rounds of fire in the air to ward off the attackers. The identity of the attackers is not yet confirmed, as no militant group has claimed responsibility for the attack so far. 

Unidentified assailants allegedly attacked BJP activist, Mohammad Rajauddin’s residence at Mayang Imphal Bengoon in Imphal West District by firing numerous rounds. According to the report, a group of unidentified assailants travelling inside a four wheeler vehicle allegedly attacked the resident. No injuries were reported, and identity of the assailants was also unknown so far. 

A team of Imphal East District Police arrested a KCP militant, identified as Ningthoujam Yamba Singh alias Sanayamba (35) at Keirao Awang Leikai in Imphal East District. Incriminating articles were recovered from the arrested militant.

Eleven traders were abducted by suspected militants near Gasuapara in South Garo Hills District. However, out of 11, eight traders managed to escape from the abductors. The three traders, who are still in the captivity of the abductors, are identified as Tamal Dey (38), Dulan Mahanta (36) and Durgapada Dutta (35). All these three traders are from Dalu in West Garo Hills District.

The terms of the ceasefire agreements with NDFB-RD and NDFB-P had been extended by six months. According to the official sources, the Joint Secretary (North East) of the UMHA and senior officials of the State Government had discussions with leaders of the NDFB-RD and NDFB-P to review the ceasefire agreements. The meetings decided to increase the term of the agreements by six months with effect from January 1 this year (2017).  

Security was beefed up after a bomb threat to a bridge at Jirighat in Cachar District by militant groups. Ahead of the Assembly elections in Manipur, intelligence report said that the NSCN-IM or the NSCN-K might blast the Jirighat Bridge, which connects Assam and Manipur.

One militant of NSCN-IM, identified as self styled ‘corporal’ Phawang Wangsu was arrested by AR at Niausa village in Longding District. One pistol, live ammunition and opium was recovered from the arrested militant.

The AR arrested one NSCN-K militant, identified as Velasayi (35) along with arms at Jail Colony in Kohima District. One point 22 mm pistol was recovered from the arrestee.

One militant of NSCN-K, identified as ''corporal'' Cheimang, was arrested from Mon Town in Mon District by AR. One .22 mm pistol along with ammunition and some other indoctrinatory documents were recovered from the arrested militant. According to PRO of AR, IGAR-N, the militant was involved in illegal ''tax collection'' for NSCN-K.

The ADGP, L R Bishnoi, said that Chinese intelligence agencies had been helping various insurgent groups of North Eastern India having bases in Myanmar. L R Bishnoi also claimed that the chief of ULFA-I, Paresh Barua had currently set up base in Ruili, a Chinese town in the Myanmar border. He said that Paresh Barua had drawn up plans to supply arms procured from Chinese agencies to smaller armed groups of the North-eastern region. “Chinese intelligences have been helping, directly or indirectly various insurgent groups of the North-eastern region that have their bases and hideouts inside Myanmar. These groups are under increasing influence of the Chinese agencies, and ULFA-I leader Paresh Barua is among those top leaders who have been in regular touch with the Chinese liaison office in Ruili on the China-Myanmar border,” ADGP LR Bishnoi said.

Giving a break-up of the cadre strength of different North-eastern rebel groups in Myanmar, ADGP Bishnoi also said that while the NSCN-K had over 1,000 cadres there, PLA– a Manipuri group came second with over 250 men. “Taking into account at least ten North-eastern rebel groups having their bases and hideouts in Myanmar, there should be close to 2,500 militants from the region in that country. Of them NSCN-K alone has a little over 1,000 men, followed by around 260 of the PLA, 230 of the UNLF and a little over 200 of the ULFA-I,” Bishnoi said. According to him, the strength of the NSCN-IM there would be between 80 and 120, NDFB-IKS about 160, KYKL, PREPAK and PREPAK-Pro around 10 each. “Two things that have been happening there is that while the rebel groups of the region work in close coordination, they get almost 100 per cent support from the local communities close to the Indo-Myanmar who belong to various Naga tribes. These villagers not only provide them food and shelter, but also guide them through the mountainous track,” Bishnoi said.

January 11

Odisha Government has targeted to complete the Gurupriya Setu (bridge) in Naxal-affected Malkangiri District of Odisha by the end of September 2017.The bridge which was opposed by the CPI-Maoist. On completion the bridge will connect the cut off area with the main land and provide access to more than 25,000 tribal people who were cut off from the mainland of Malkangiri after Chitrakonda Reservoir was constructed in 1964 for Balimela Hydel Project.

Two militants were killed by the Army as it foiled an infiltration bid along the LoC in Poonch sector in Poonch District. An Army spokesman said the troops present along the LoC detected movement of two terrorists along the Betar Nala in the wee hours of January 10 and engaged them with heavy automatic fire. “While one terrorist was eliminated by afternoon of January 10 the second was eliminated today (January 11),” he said. He said the bodies of the slain terrorists and their weapons lie on the LoC.

CM Mehbooba Mufti said that 4088 missing persons and terrorists belonging to J&K, who had crossed the borders, are still in Pakistan and PoK. She was responding to the question of BJP MLA from Jammu East, Rajesh Gupta, in the Legislative Assembly. “As per the figures of the Home Department, 4088 missing persons and terrorists are still camping/residing in Pakistan and PoK”, she said. It is pertinent to mention here that during peak of militancy in this State huge number of misguided youth had crossed over the borders to get arms training in the camps established in different parts of Pakistan and PoK by the outfits of terrorists and ISI, Pakistan's external intelligence agency.

One ZUF militant, identified as Abel Gangmei (30) was killed by suspected NSCN-IM cadres at Padanpung village in Noney District. Two spent cartridges were recovered near the dead body of the militant.

Eleven persons, including six NSCN-IM militants were arrested and arms were recovered by the Thoubal District Police in three separate incidents from different parts of the Thoubal District. In the first incident, a team of Thoubal District Police led by SP M Pradeep conducted a search operation at Tuisem village under Pallel Police Station and arrested seven persons including three former NSCN-IM cadres who failed to produce proper identification proof. Four SSBL guns and one unauthorized weapon were recovered in the operation.

In the second incident, the Police team carried out a search operation at Khangshim village under Kakching Police Station and arrested a sympathizer and a self styled ‘captain’ of NSCN-IM identified as Hongsha Moshel (32) and Ashang Hongsha (42) respectively. One .38 pistol with four live rounds, two mobile phone handsets and a wallet containing some documents were recovered from their possession.

In the third incident, the Police carried out search operation at Serou quarry area where they arrested two NSCN-IM cadres, identified as Bungdon Bingham Ningham (29) and Seltun Thohrin Anal (23), who were collecting ‘illegal tax’ from trucks at that area. One .32 pistol loaded with one live round and a sum of INR 1100 were recovered from the arrestees.

One arms dealer, identified as Abdul Huissen alias Japan (38) was arrested by Bishnupur District Police commandos, at a mobile vehicle check post at Moirang Lamkhai along Tiddim road in Bishnupur District. One 9 mm pistol along with a magazine was recovered from the arrestee.

A strategic group meeting of the Unified Command Structure was held that focused on the increasing activities of JMB and other insurgent groups in Assam. In the meeting, UMHA Joint Secretary Satyendra Garg was present along with Assam Chief Secretary VK Pipersania, Home Commissioner LS Changsan and top officials of other security agencies including the Indian Army.

After the meeting DGP of Assam, Mukesh Sahay said, “In today’s meeting, we held detailed discussion on the activities of JMB and other insurgent groups in Assam. All security agencies have been put on high alert for approaching Republic Day.” According to the sources, in recent years, at least 40 cadres and linkmen of JMB were arrested in different parts of Assam.

A patrolling party of SSB carried out an operation in the area of Riphu Reserve Forest and busted a camp of NDFB-IKS. The patrolling party recovered sleeping bag for six persons, three country-made guns, one diary, four solar plates, SIM cards, 10 blankets, mosquito nets and many food items, along with various cooking utensils and clothes.

According to the sources, the GNLA still had 30 active members including self-styled ‘c-in-c’ Sohan D Shira and others wanted leaders like Kamdak and Megam. The Meghalaya DGP Swaraj Bir Singh said, “The GNLA has been weakened but there is certain nucleus located in separate areas that needed to be overrun.” The sources also said that the GNLA was still in touch with the ULFA-I leadership.

January 12

The ‘c-in-c’ of KCP-Poirei Meitei Lup, identified as Khoirom Ranjit alias Rocky alias Great Macha (35) was arrested at Mayur Vihar area in East Delhi along with a female cadre of the militant group identified as Inungbam Sanatombi Devi (26). The Delhi Police recovered 100-150 mobile SIM cards and laptops from the militant leader and his associate in Delhi. The Delhi Police also disclosed other information related to the militant group after interrogation. DCP-(special cell) Sanjeev Yadav said, “They are involved in large number of cases of terror activities like lobbing of grenades, shoot-outs, killings, planting of bombs, running extortion network by intimidating businessmen and politicians."

India roundly condemned the terrorist attacks that happened in Kabul and Kandahar in Afghanistan on January 10, with an official statement pointing a finger at Pakistan without naming it. The Ministry of External Affairs statement emphasised the "inhumane suffering inflicted on the peace-loving people of the region by the abominable phenomenon of international terrorism, which sadly continues to have its epicentre in our region and is pursued brazenly as an instrument of state policy to achieve narrow political objectives."

PM Narendra Modi also wrote a letter to Afghanistan President, Ashraf Ghani condemning the terrorist strike, particularly the explosions that targeted UAE officials in Kandahar that left both the UAE ambassador to Afghanistan and the governor of the province injured. "India condemns these attacks on Afghanistan, and on its legitimate authority. Such attacks are unacceptable and are aimed at undermining the progress made by the people of Afghanistan against all odds," he said.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault pressed for “decisive action” against Pakistan-based terror groups such as the LeT, JeM and HuM, which “are targeting” India. France vowed to work with New Delhi to get JeM ‘chief’ Masood Azhar proscribed by the UNSC.French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault also said: “The international community’s determination to combat terrorism must be the same everywhere, regardless of the threat.

In addition, on the cross-LoC surgical strikes carried out by India in September 2016 after an attack on the Uri Army camp in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, Mr. Ayrault, said that a country had a “right to defend itself” in the wake of such threats.

On the front of counter-terrorism activities, he said, France and India hold “constant and very operational exchanges” on the terrorist threat. “We have a bilateral working group that brings together all the players concerned over counter-terrorism, and, among others, cooperation with regard to investigations and between our respective intervention units, the GIGN [Groupe d'intervention de la Gendarmerie nationale] from the French side, and the National Security Guards [NSG] from the Indian side. I welcome the development of all these cooperations,” Mr. Ayrault said.

Ahead of Indian Republic Day, Indo-Pakistan border adjoining Rajasthan is on an high alert following intelligence input over possibility of infiltration bid by suicide attackers. Patrolling on the International Border in the state has been intensified. According to sources, input received by the officials hint at terrorists are expected to try and cross the border along with consignment of heroin and explosives. After these inputs, BSF has been further alerted and directed to be extra alert. The night curfew is already on and additional security forces have been deployed at the sensitive places and vigil is being done with surveillance gadgets. BSF is also going to start operation Sard Hawa in next 2-3 days.

Confirming about increasing vigilance at the borders, BSF official sources said that at the international borders adjoining Rajasthan, strict vigilance is being made. Patrolling is being done at the borders and surveillance is being done through gadgets and additional alertness is being kept. Sources said that during the night, curfew is being imposed and directions have been given to shoot at sight on those violating the curfew.

The UAE Ambassador to India, Ahmed Albanna, assured that UAE will cooperate with India in order to enable it to get hold of Dawood Ibrahim. Albanna said that UAE is determined to have a strong strategic relationship with India and will be signing a strategic cooperation agreement with the country soon. Condemning the global terrorism, Albanna said that some countries are using terrorists for proxy war, which needs to be stopped soon.

A CRPF jawan and a sniffer dog were injured in a pressure bomb blast allegedly triggered by CPI-Maoist cadres in Bijapur District of Chhattisgarh. The incident took place when a ROP of CRPF’s 85th battalion was out to ensure security to a patch on Bijapur–Bhopalpattanam road. When the party reached near Chinna Kodepal village in Mahadev Ghat area, dog master Surendra Kumar stepped over the pressure IED connection. 

Two Maoists, one of them carrying cash reward on his head, surrendered before the Police in Narayanpur District of Chhattisgarh. The cadres, identified as Kaveram Salaam and Jagnu Salaam (30), turned themselves in at Narayanpur District headquarters, Narayanpur ASP, Anil Soni said. They were active as members of the Bagjhar Janatana Sarkar group of Maoists in the Benoor Police Station area of the District. They were assigned tasks like arranging meetings as well food for rebels, dropping Maoist pamphlets and posters, collecting information and inputs and others local work, he said adding that Kaveram was carrying a reward of INR 10,000 on his head.

The ‘group commander’, Abhay, of the TPC, a splinter group of the CPI-Maoist, was killed in an encounter under Chainpur Police station area of Palamu District of Jharkhand. The encounter took place between the team from Garhwa Police, along with a contingent of the JAP. SFs have recovered two rifles, cartridges, batteries, their chargers, blankets and other materials. 

Three cadres of the (PLFI, a splinter group of the CPI-Maoist, who were part of the group that set ablaze heavy machinery engaged in IOC’s Paradip-Ranchi-Raipur underground pipeline project on January 10, were arrested from Murhu area of Khunti District of Jharkhand. The trio has been identified as Dinesh Gudiya - brother of PLFI ‘zonal commander’ Jeedan Gudiya - Sunil Nag and Batu Kachchhap. PLFI pamphlets and jerry cans, used for carrying fuel like petrol or kerosene oil, were also recovered from them.

Two civilians, Ramesh Atala (27) and Manohar Atala (55) were killed by the CPI-Maoist cadres in Gadchiroli District of Maharashtra. The Gadchiroli Police statement said that the Maoists shot the victims claiming they were ‘Police informers’. It added that the victims were farmers and provided food to Maoists and travelled with them to nearby villages. The Police claimed that CPI-Maoist fear their influence is reducing in the District as developmental work by the administration has earned the confidence of tribals. A section of the Police has claimed that the latest killing was carried out by Chatgaon LOS which is headed by ‘commander’ Yogesh.

Intelligence agencies have identified 12 active terror launch pads with 300 terrorists in Pakistan. The launch pads were identified as Balakot, Garhi Habibullah, Batrasi, Mashar-e-Akshah, Abdullah bin Mausam, Dalai, Chela Bandi, Kotli, Dungi, Gulpar, Barali and Mandakuli. According to an intelligence report there are "reception" areas within Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir, where these terrorists would be received. The reception areas where the terrorists meet their handlers, who provide them logistics and money, are Lojab Valley, Rajwar forest, Bandipora, Kazikund, Rafiabad and Naugam.

A civilian was killed and three others were injured when unidentified armed men attacked an Imphal-bound convoy of loaded trucks escorted by heavy security personnel at Imphal-Jiribam road in Lukhambi of Noney District. The deceased has been identified as one Dikhonang (25) of Tamenglong while the injured were identified as Thuannilung (31) – a school teacher from Taobam village, Jacky Kahmei (30) of Tamenglong, and Nipen Kalita (24). According to Police, a convoy of over 500 goods-laden trucks was on their way towards Imphal when they were attacked by the unidentified people with sophisticated weapons, killing one civilian and injuring three others at the spot. However, a separate source said that the victims (all civilians) were travelling in a car when the incident happened. The Police report said the injured were rushed to AR Unit Hospital, Noney where they were treated but later sent to Imphal for better treatment. However, Police did not divulge any information on whether they retaliated to the alleged ambush.

A cadre of KCP-Poirei Meitei Lup, identified as Pukhrihongbam Ibomcha was arrested in Imphal in Manipur. A 9 mm pistol and 2 hand grenades were recovered from his possession.

The ZUF categorically clarified that Abel Gangmei (30), who was killed by suspected NSCN-IM militant at Padangpung village in Noney District on January 11 was not related to the outfit and he was a civilian.

The ‘c-in-c’ of KCP-Poirei Meitei Lup, identified as Khoirom Ranjit alias Rocky alias Great Macha (35) was arrested at Mayur Vihar area in East Delhi along with a female cadre of the militant group identified as Inungbam Sanatombi Devi (26). The Delhi Police recovered 100-150 mobile SIM cards and laptops from the militant leader and his associate. The Delhi Police also disclosed other information related to the militant group after interrogation. DCP (special cell) Sanjeev Yadav said, “They are involved in large number of cases of terror activities like lobbing of grenades, shoot-outs, killings, planting of bombs, running extortion network by intimidating businessmen and politicians."

Unidentified assailants hurled a crude bomb at the residence of Hokuto Zhimomi, a BJP candidate for DMC polls, at Veterinary colony of Burma camp area in Dimapur District. The blast damaged the concrete floored compound but no casualties were reported. Police recovered some plastic materials from the spot.

Meghalaya Police announced a reward of INR 200,000 on the whereabouts of Reding T. Sangma, the ‘c-in-c’ of militant group ASAK. SP of South Garo Hills District, Anand Mishra, while announcing the reward, said, “Any person who provides any information which leads to the apprehension of Reding T. Sangma will be rewarded in cash a sum of INR 2 lakh by the office of the Superintendent of Police, South Garo Hills.”

January 13

Naushad, a resident of Bijnor (Uttar Pradesh), who was acquitted of terror charges was arrested again by Police. Police had arrested Naushad in 2007 claiming that he was planning a terror attack. However, in 2015 he was acquitted by a special court after spending more than eight years in jail. The Uttar Pradesh government had challenged the order in the High Court. The High Court had issued a non-bailable warrant against him in December, 2016. Naushad, who was arrested in Bijnor, will be taken into transit remand and brought to Lucknow on January 16. The next hearing of the matter is on January 31.

A special NIA court in New Delhi, levelled charges against Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal in a matter related to conspiring terror attacks in various parts of India. The charges against Jundal, who is also the convict in the Aurangabad arms haul case, have been framed under the IPC Section 153 A and other sections of UAPA.The trial on the same will begin from January 31, 2017.

A case was registered on June 8, 2012 under section 18 of UAPA against Jundal and his associates, who happened to be the members of LeT. After the Mumbai terror attack of 26/11 (November 26, 2008), Jundal with senior functionaries of LeT hatched the conspiracy in Pakistan in 2010 to recruit youngsters from India for terrorist activities and to promote enmity between different groups in the name of religion. In August, 2016 the designated MCOCA court sentenced life imprisonment to Jundal in the Aurangabad arms haul case.

Six SF personnel were injured in an IED blast in Burha Pahari area of Latehar District of JharkhandThe blast took place during an encounter with the cadres of the CPI-Maoist. Officials said that three explosions took place first around 5:30 AM, then another took place around 10 AM and then again at 1 PM. Two Assistant Commandants of CRPF, one head constable and two SIs and a Jharkhand Police jawan were injured.

One Naxalite, identified as Mahendra Manjhi, was arrested in a major anti-Naxal operation carried by the 26th CRPF and local Police in Lugu-pahari forest area in Gomia block in Bokaro District of Jharkhand. The CRPF also seized large quantity of fire arms, including a rifle of .315, with one magazine, three .315 cartridges and five 303 cartridges from him. Mahendra was a close associate of Santosh Mahto group. However, no loss of life reported and no Policemen were injured in the operation, said ASP, Sanjay Kumar (Operations).

The CPI-Maoist cadres abducted five persons including four Odisha Government officials from Chitrakonda in Malkangiri District.  Odisha is going to have panchayat elections on February 13, 15, 17, 19, 21, 2017. Sources said a group of Maoists produced them at a ‘Praja Court’ at Similipodar village. The five persons have been identified as poll officials Hrushiskesh Naik and Purshottam Behra, junior engineers Praveen Soren and Kamini Kanth as well as Jodamba village head Lakshaman Sisa's son Manoranjan Sisa, sources said. However, another officer Lingaraj Majhi managed to escape.

The District Police have arrested a relative of Naxalite, Thota Ramulu (35), in Karimnagar District of Telangana. Ramulu is the relative of Jadala Nagaraju, a surrendered Naxalite told Karimnagar Commissioner of Police, V B Kamalasan Reddy. Police have recovered 50 rounds of ammunition of different weapons, a 18mm rifle, one SBBL rifle, three DBBL rifles, one 9 mm carbine, one .32 pistol, a 8mm tapancha from his house at Karimnagar town.

The BSF foiled major infiltration attempt by a group of four to six militants, trying to infiltrate into the Indian Territory, along the IB in Samba sector in Samba District by killing one of them and forcing others to retreat to Pakistan. Official sources said the BSF troops observed the movement of four to six militants, who were moving towards the Indian Territory along Tarnah Nullah between Samba and Hiranagar sectors on the IB. As the alert BSF troops challenged the militants, after heavy exchange of firing one of the militants was killed on spot while others were reported to have retreated to Pakistan taking cover of darkness in the area. The BSF didn’t suffer any casualties in the encounter.

SFs busted a militant hideout and recovered cache of arms and ammunition in Charmar area of Surankote in Poonch District. Acting on tip off, police and army launched joint operation in Charmar area of Surankote and recovered the cache of arms and ammunition from an underground dump, which included two AK 56, two Chinese pistols, two RPG guns, four HE 36 grenades, 10 AK magazines, 302 AK ammunition, LMG ammunition 88, sniper ammunition 12, one wireless set damaged, one bayonet cover, three pistol magazines, two pistols ammunition, three M 16 Rocket and one 51 motor ammunition.

Army Chief General Bipin Rawat made it clear that more surgical strikes cannot be ruled out as India has the “right to retaliate” if Pakistan does not react positively to offers of peace. General Rawat also said India needs to “wait and watch” the Pakistani response in Jammu and Kashmir. He accepted that challenges of proxy war, insurgency and terrorism will keep India embroiled for “years to come”. The General said the DGMOs of both sides have spoken to each other and want peace and tranquillity along the LoC. The two officers spoke on November 23, 2016 and since then there has been relative peace along the LoC, he said. Asked if surgical strikes conducted along the LoC, and operations conducted in Myanmar, would now be part of the doctrine, the Army chief said, “We have told the adversary to accept peace and in case that offer is not reciprocated this method of operations (surgical strikes) shall continue”. He also said the aim is to ensure peace and tranquillity and it (surgical strike) shall not be needed if there is peace.

Police arrested a KCP militant, identified as Rishikesh Singh (41), from Sangakpham Bazar area in Imphal West District. Incriminating articles were also recovered from his possession.

Thounaojam Shyamkumar , MLA from INC, denied Delhi Police's charge that he had nexus with the arrested militant leader of the KCP-Poirei Meitei Lup. ‘C-in-c’ of KCP-Poirei Meitei Lup, identified as Khoirom Ranjit alias Rocky alias Great Macha (35) was arrested from New Delhi on January 12.

January 14

In a shocking report that discloses the state of Police Stations and Police Forces, it has been revealed that even basic infrastructure to fulfill their duties have not been provided to the Police Stations. Many of the Police Stations do not have the basic facilities such as vehicles, phones and wireless to carry out their duties more effectively. As per the report, there are a total of 15,555 Police Stations in the country and out of these, 188 Police Stations are without a single vehicle, 402 lack telephone lines and 134 don’t have wireless sets. 65 of these neither have a telephone line nor wireless set, as per the data accumulated by the BPR&D.

Insurgency-struck Manipur has the maximum number of Police Stations without a phone or wireless set. The North-east State has 43 Police Stations without phones or wireless sets. Chhattisgarh has 161 Police Stations without vehicles. MP has 111 Police Stations without any telephone line. MP is followed by Meghalaya and Manipur at 67 Police Stations each. UP also has 51 Police Stations without a telephone line and 17 without wireless, the report says. BPR&D figures revealed that there are only 10.13 vehicles for 100 Policemen at the national level. Only 1,75,358 vehicles in all available for law enforcement. Maharashtra has the maximum number of vehicles (17,131), followed by Tamil Nadu (15,926) and UP (13,452). “In the case of Chhattisgarh and MP, most Police Stations are in Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist)-affected areas where wireless sets or vehicles are often snatched by Naxalites [Left Wing Extremists (LWEs)]. This cannot be an excuse as police need at least phones, vehicles and wireless sets for communication and mobility,” said an official. There were 22,80,691 Police officers across all States and Union territories (UTs) as of January 2016. The issue is particularly serious in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, UP, West Bengal, Dadar & Nagar Haveli and Delhi where there is one Policeman for 1,100 people.

After reports on abduction of five poll officials in Malkangiri District of Odisha on January 13, the abducted officials claimed that they were in the captivity of the LWEs and produced before a praja court. Of the five poll officials, two of them – gram panchayat technical assistants Praveen Soren and Kaminikanta Singh – have narrated their ordeal to media after their release. “We were abducted while we were on duty at our respective panchayats. We were taken to a place near Gora Setu and produced before a praja court where around 20-22 Maoists were present. The ultras threatened us not to participate in the panchayat polls and asked us to go back,” Kaminikanta Singh said. Another abducted official Praveen Soren said: “The Maoists told me that whether it is police encounter or other issues, district administration has not reached out to people. The villagers have been deprived of the welfare schemes. They will not allow polls to be held in the region till the government benefits reach them.”

The separatists in J&K have further scaled down their ongoing agitation by restricting the strike call to every Friday and have asked people to observe a 'black day' on Republic Day. In a fresh protest programme issued late last night (January 14), the separatists - hardline APHC-G chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani, moderate APHC-M chief Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and JKLF chief Yasin Malik - asked the people to observe strike only on Fridays. In view of Republic Day, the separatists have called for a shutdown on Thursday (January 19) as well this week. They have also called for joint protest on Monday (January 16) after the afternoon prayer.

In terms of militancy related violence, Assam was the only State in the Northeast which recorded higher casualties during 2016, as compared to the previous year (2015). Referencing Government official records, a report said that, in 2016 (up to November), Assam recorded a total of 80 casualties, including 29 civilians, 4 security personnel and 47 extremists. But, in 2015, Assam recorded 58 killings, including 9 civilians and 49 insurgents.

Significantly, the number of civilian casualties in the State rose sharply to 29 in 2016 from 9 in 2015. In 2014, 168 civilian fatalities were recorded. In 2013, 35 civilians were killed in insurgency-related violence across the State. Similarly, casualties among the SFs also increased from zero in 2015 to four in 2016. Due to sustained operations by SFs, 47 militants belonging to various insurgent groups lost their lives during 2016, as against 49 in 2015, 102 in 2014 and 52 in 2013 in the State. According to the high level security sources, there was a substantial decline in insurgency related incidents in 2015. In that year, the level of violence steeply declined to the lowest since 1997. Official records further state that 125 persons were kidnapped in Assam in 2013, 94 in 2014, 27 in 2015 and 14 in 2016. On the other hand, 348 extremists were arrested in 2013, 319 in 2014, 645 in 2015 and 343 in 2016 in the State.

According to the security sources the militant groups having bases in Myanmar have started using different routes of Arunachal Pradesh-Myanmar border to enter into the North East region. Earlier, Nagaland-Myanmar border was considered to be the most vulnerable. Sources said that though some militants are still sneaking to the country through Nagaland, most such infiltrations are taking place through Arunachal Pradesh which is considered to be a peaceful state. Security sources said that most such movements were taking place through the Changlang District of Arunachal Pradesh. The Arunachal Pradesh CM also held a high level meeting with senior officers of the Army and paramilitary forces last month to discuss the situation.

The UNC of Manipur opposed the fencing work between India and Myanmar and ''appealed to Nagas'' to jointly oppose it. The fencing work is on at remote Pangsha village in Nagaland’s Tuensang District. The NSCN-IM, NSCN-K, ENPO and several other Nagaland based social organization had also opposed the move to fence the India-Myanmar border in Nagaland.

The Government officials said that the UHM Rajnath Singh had sought a report on the ambush of January 12 on NH 37 in Manipur in which one person was killed and three injured.

January 15

France has reiterated its support to India's pitch to get JeM 'chief' Masood Azhar designated as a global terrorist, days after China blocked such a proposal at the UN. It added that there are "very strong arguments in favour" of designating Azhar as an international terrorist and said that it wants to see decisive action taken against terror groups targeting India.  French Foreign Minister, Jean-Marc Ayrhoo, who was on a four-day India visit, stated that France is also a co-sponsor of the proposal to designate Masood Azhar as a global terrorist. He regretted the fact that despite joint attempts by France and India and wide support from the Sanctions Committee, unanimity could not be reached.  He further said that JeM is already included in the UN Sanctions Committees list of terror organisations.

Anti-terror intelligence agencies have found instances of medicines from India landing up with the Islamic State (IS). The agencies strongly suspect that medicines supplied to the Gulf countries were ending up in Syria and Iraq for the use of the terror group.

At the recent All-India Police Science Congress in Kerala, a top IPS official of the IB noted during a discussion on the IS: “A total of 70 incidents of violence have been reported outside the area of ISIS control in 20 countries including several lone wolf attacks. The targets have been remarkably similar to the ones chosen by other terror outfits targeting India, whether it is the Indian Mujahideen or the Lashkar-e-Tayyaba.” The officer said, “There have been loose ISIS motivated or inspired groups in Hyderabad (one led by one Yazdani), one in Roorkee and lone wolves like in Parbhani. Instances of supply of logistics have come to our notice, particularly in the form of supply of medicines.”

According to top IB sources, around 300 individuals in India are on the radar of various Police forces and central agencies for their “proclivity towards the ISIS cause”.

So far, around 100 persons have tried to travel to join IS and around 67 have reached the area of operation of the extremist group. Agencies have arrested about 60 persons, including some in Telangana state for linkages to the IS.

Explaining the magnitude of the problem, an IB officer said, “Over 70 lakh Indians work in the Gulf and West Asia and remain vulnerable to radical propaganda.” Several expats from Hyderabad based in the UAE and Saudi Arabia have joined the IS, as has one person from Machilipatnam in Andhra Pradesh who was based in Kuwait. Analysis by the police has revealed that recent IS recruits from India were young - about 90 per cent in the 18-33 age group. More specifically, half the recruits from India were in the 23-28 age group. About 70 per cent had a technical background and 50 per cent were graduates.

Investigations following the arrest of five members of a group called Base Movement in November 2016 have revealed that a leader of the group was involved in four blasts carried out in Madurai between 2011 and 2014,. The five members were arrested by the NIA from Madurai in Tamil Nadu in connection with a series of bomb blasts at court premises in South India. One of the arrested men, N Abbas Ali, who is linked to former operatives of Al Ummah, has revealed that he planted four bombs in Madurai between 2011 and 2014. Ali is accused by the NIA of planning and executing blasts in the premises of courts in Chittoor, Kollam, Mysuru, Nellore and Malapuram between April 7 and November 1, 2016.

Following are the accounts of the Madurai blasts provided by Ali to investigators, which are corroborated by news reports:

The May 2011 blast occurred in a dustbin near the crowded Mattuthavani bus stand at 9.15 pm. Nobody was injured in the minor blast. On September 29, 2011, Ali planted a device in a Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation bus to mark the anniversary of the 2002 killing of Al Ummah leader Imam Ali by police in Bengaluru. The IED, made with materials sourced from firecrackers, was found by employees of the transport corporation and defused. On September 29, 2012, Ali planted an IED outside a TASMAC wine shop in Theni to mark the death anniversary of Imam Ali. The device exploded but no casualties occurred. The fourth blast occurred on February 9, 2014, at the venue of an AIADMK meeting in Madurai. The bomb, placed below the stage, exploded when no one was around. The date was the anniversary of the hanging of Afzal Guru, who was convicted in the 2001 Parliament attack case. “Ali has claimed to have been involved in four blasts in the Madurai region. It seems that these cases are undetected or some others have already been arrested,’’ a source said.

The Police arrested six cadres of the CPI-Maoist along with arms and ammunition during a raid at Karmpur Bhataulia village under Paroo Police Station in Muzaffarpur District of Bihar. The Police have also seized two country made pistols, six detonators, four cartridges of .315 bore, 17 cartridges of 7.62 bore, hand-written six leaflets meant to threaten people to realise levy and two motorcycles. The arrestees were identified as Dashrath Ram, Santosh Sahni, Baidyanath Paswan, Mukesh Paswan, Rajesh Paswan and Sanjay Kumar Sahni.

CPI-Maoist cadres have warned villagers through posters in Narayanpatna block of Koraput District of Odisha to abstain from voting during panchayat polls. The posters were found in Balipeta and Tentulipadar panchayats of the District. The panchayat polls will be held in five phases: February 13, 15, 17, 19 and 21, 2017.

Two villagers were killed by the CPI-Maoist cadres at Taringa village under Goeilkera Thana area in West Singhbhum District of Jharkhand.  The victims were identified as Suresh Bhuiyan (25) and Jiten Lomga (15). No reason was cited by West Singhbhum District Police for the killings. 

A CPI-Maoist cadre was killed in an encounter with SFs in Kandanar forest area under Darbha Police station in Bastar District of Chhattisgarh. SFs also recovered a .303 rifle, its five live rounds, one SMBL rifle, a couple of detonators, bags, Naxal literature and items of daily use. The identity of the Maoist killed is yet to be ascertained. The total number Maoists killed in separate gun-battles in Bastar Division in January 2017 has reached to 8.

The SFs in Kerala have warned that the CPI-Maoist cadres are planning a coordinated movement of its urban and rural forces for strengthening its activities in southern States of India, mainly in Kerala. SFs claimed this on the basis of the review report of the SZC of the CPI-Maoist retrieved by the Police from the site of Nilambur encounter. The report says, that they were able to defeat the enemy plans and successfully organize the meeting in the forest area of tri-junction under the protection of PLGA Forces, support and participation of people.

The three parties, the IPFT, the INPT and the NCT, announced a hartal (general strike) in areas under the TTAADC on February 8 to protest the new citizenship policy of the Union Government. The proposed amendments will grant swifter Indian citizenship to persecuted minorities from countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.

UHM Rajnath Singh, along with Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, reviewed the prevailing situation in Manipur. The State is reeling under a 75-day long economic blockade on NHs, called by the UNC, which has crippled normal life. Top officials including CoAS General Bipin Rawat, Union Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi, and AG Mukul Rohatgi were also present in the meeting. The presence of AG is leading to speculation of the Union Government mulling some legal action. The blockade of the NHs leading to the Manipur valley has been in place since November 1.

January 16

Three LeT militants were killed in an encounter with SFs at Awoora village in Pahalgam area of Anantnag District. Acting on specific intelligence input about the presence of three LeT militants, ‘commander’ Adil, Masood and Abid, hiding in the village, Army’s 3rd RR and SOG launched a search operation in the area on January 15. An army official said as the SFs were conducting the search operation, the hiding militants fired upon them and the SFs retaliated. The exchange of fire went on till late in the evening after which it was halted for the night, the official said, adding it was resumed in the wee hours today and the three militants were killed in the gunfight. Three AK-47 rifles have been recovered from the encounter site, the official said adding the operation has been called off.

Source:Compiled from news reports and are provisional.





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