The Naxalite Threat
LONDON – Far removed from the photo-shopped images of ‘Shining India’, lies a dark and sinister shadow that stalks the Indian Republic. The spectre of the Naxalite threat now has middle-class urban Indians nervous as they watch increasingly worrisome media reports of the repeated failures of Indian Security Forces in containing the ‘red menace’ in the jungles and hinterlands of India.
What was once only a peripheral threat to the Indian State has now reached a critical mass that has left even the ivory-tower Indian elites in New Delhi with furrowed brows. An embarrassing problem once ignored and neglected has now broken out into the worlds glare. And rightly so. As the vigour of the Reds grows from strength to strength, and the impotence of the Indian Army and Paramilitary is increasingly apparent, questions are being raised of the safety and security of India’s nuclear weapons arsenal. Similar concerns were raised internationally only a few months ago when the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan were said to be within spitting distance of Islamabad and Pakistan’s own nuclear arsenal was seen as an obvious target. But whereas the Pakistan Army swiftly and efficiently routed the militants from a standing start within just a few weeks, their colleagues in India have struggled to contain an irresistibly growing Naxalite movement that has pledged to bring New Delhi down.