A post put out by a former journalist-turned-social activist on Facebook vowing that “at least 400 policemen would be killed to avenge the murder of 40 comrades” in two separate encounters in Gadchiroli district last week, caused a major stir in the Maharashtra police force on Monday, with the top brass ordering probe into the threat handed publicly by the activist.
In his post uploaded on his Facebook page late on Saturday afternoon, Pune-based activist Raosaheb Dokhe dubbed the twin anti-naxal operations as “fake encounters” and said those killed in the two operations were not actually Maoists. “It is my challenge that 400 policemen would be killed to avenge murder of 40 comrades by the Government,” Dhoke stated.
“Lal salam……. GadChirolit 40 Maowadi (naxalwadi) Thar marlyachi dawndi sarkar pitat aahe.. te sarwa maowadi hote ka…? kiti police mele..? nahi mhanajech te assal maowadi navte…fake encounter madhe 40 Comrade ..sarkarne Marle……..yacha badala jarur ghetla jaeel..khun ke badale khun….40 chya badlyat 400 police thar marle atil…..chalange… .Fadnavis Govt….thodi wat bagha…tumche bhavishya far waeet aahe………..lal salam,” Dhoke stated in a Marathi post put out on Facebook at 3.57 pm on April 28.
The translation of the Marathi post reads thus:
“Lal Salam…The Government has gone to town claiming that it had killed 40 Maoists. Were all the people killed in the encounters Maoists?. How many policemen were killed? They were definitely not Maoists. In the fake encounters, 40 comrades were killed by the Government.
The killings would definitely be avenged. There would be blood in return of blood. To avenge the elimination of 40 comrades, 400 policemen would be killed. It is a challenge. I ask the Fadnavis government to wait for a while (for the killings of policemen)….Your future is pretty bad. Lal Salam”.
Confirming that he had taken cognisance of the Facebook threat, Maharashtra’s Director General Police (DGP) Satish Mathur told “The Pioneer” on Monday evening: “Yes. We have taken cognisance of the Facebook post. I have asked Special DIG to look int0 the matter”.
When contacted over phone, a somewhat defensive Dhoke confirmed that he had indeed put out the Facebook post, but he said that whatever he had stated in his post were his “thoughts” and “concerns” and that he had not said that he would himself avenge the killings of Maoists.
“I am not a Maoist. Nor do I posses any weapon. I am just an activist. Whatever I stated in the Facebook post were my thoughts. I just expressed my concern over what happened in Gadchiroli district last week. I have not said that I would avenge the killings in Gadchiroli district” Dhoke told this newspaper.
In elaboration, Dhoke said: “I am a Dalit. I used to be a journalist. I became an activist later. I have serious concern for Dalits. But I am an unarmed person. I have no money. I am finding it to make both ends meet”.
Meanwhile, senior police officials have already swung into action and are trying to ascertain the antecedents of Dhoke. It may be recalled that 40 Maoists were killed in two separate operations.
Raosaheb Dokhe is not alone amongst the media/academic fraternity in expressing such views. A few days back, DU professor and author Nandini Sundar, who also happens to be wife of renowned Lutyens’ journalist Siddarth Varadarajan (ex-editor of The Hindu, who now runs the far-left propaganda website ‘The Wire’), tweeted in more sophisticated language on the Gadchiroli encounter, but her basic sentiment was not much different from Dokhe’s –
This kind of sympathy for Maoists, who are hardcore terrorists with the stated goal to overthrow the Indian state and establish a Communist dictatorship – is spread far & wide across urban Bharat in a class of people known as ‘Urban Naxals’. The urban Naxals have established their base in some of the most prominent Universities of the country such as JNU, Jadavpur University etc. They have penetrated deep into academia, media, culture & artistic organizations and other institutions of the state.
This two-part series by film-maker and public thinker Vivek Agnihotri, whose film “Buddha in a traffic jam” also touches on the same topic, provides more insight on the Urban Naxal phenomenon –
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