Manatu (Jharkhand), Dec 17 (ANI): Six activists on Wednesday deserted the Tritiya Prastuti Committee, a splinter faction, to join the main Maoist group in Jharkhand.
Defying writ of local administration, police and paramilitary, hundreds of Communist Party of India-Maoist, CPI (Maoist), activists brandishing automatic rifles and villagers attended the ceremony deep in the forests of Manatu in Palamau district.
"When I left the Tritiya Prastuti Committee (TPC) and joined the Maoists I didn't know what kind of party this was but after joining it I came to know what kind of party it was. When I though of quitting the TPC I was threatened with dire consequences," said Brahma Dev, an activist.
"I used to deliver arms and practice firing along with the other members," said Umesh, another activist
The Maoist violence-estimated to have caused 600 to 700 deaths annually and the displacement 100,000 civilians-has spread to 182 of India's 602 districts and has been declared as the country's single biggest internal security threat.
The Maoists have stepped up violence across eastern and central India. They have attacked schools and police stations, and used landmines and Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) to disrupt infrastructure development projects.
The main objective of the Maoists is to prevent the development of infrastructure in remote areas, which so far has remained their exclusive domain.
Thousands have been killed by Maoists in the recent past. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has described the Maoist threat one of the gravest homegrown threats to India's internal security.
The Maoists claim they are fighting for the rights of poor farmers and landless labourers, but they are fast losing credibility as they continue attacking schools, hospitals and infrastructure projects. (ANI)