US names ULFA, CPI (Maoist) as Groups of Concern
Washington, May 2: The US has designated India's banned United Liberation Front of Assam (ULFA) and the Communist Party of India (Maoist) as Groups of Concern.
Besides these two, 41 other active groups from across the world figure in this list released by the US State Department's Country Reports on Terrorism, 2006 on Monday.
The report says that that Communist Party of India (Maoist), formed with the merger of the Maoist Communist Center of India (MCCI) and the People's War (PW) in September 2004, continues to employ violence to achieve its goals of peasant revolution, abolition of class hierarchies, and expansion of Maoist-controlled "liberated zones," eventually leading to the creation of an independent "Maoist" state.
It says that the CPI (Maoist) reportedly has a significant cadre of women. And, its important leaders include Ganapati (the PW leader from Andhra Pradesh), Pramod Mishra, Uma Shankar, and P.N.G. (alias Nathuni Mistry, arrested by Jharkhand police in 2002).
"Although difficult to assess (its strength) with any accuracy, media reports and local authorities suggest the CPI's (Maoist) membership may be as high as 31,000, including both hard-core militants and dedicated sympathizers," the report says.
It notes that the Maoist group has loose links to other such groups in the region, including the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), but does not appear dependent on outside sources of support.