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politics & violence, Select Writings of Balagopal »

[21 Feb 2010 | No Comment | 5,337 views]
Have We Heard the Last of the Peace Talks?

It began as a tenacious essay in political realism, entered a phase of sheer drama unbelievable in its unreality, and ended in the bitter rattle of gunfire.
The reference is to the ‘talks’ between YS Rajasekhara Reddy’s government in Andhra Pradesh and the Naxalites. To be fair to the devil, Rajasekhara Reddy never really believed in the talks and never joined the effort, nor the theatre that was enacted in Hyderabad for about a week. That is about the only good thing one can say about his conduct in the matter: …

politics & violence, Select Writings of Balagopal »

[21 Feb 2010 | No Comment | 7,796 views]
People’s war and the government : Did the police have the last laugh?

Unreasonable tenacity usually has a way of proving itself, establishing perhaps that reasonableness lies in nothing other than perseverance. About five years ago, when a retired IAS officer of the Andhra Pradesh cadre by name SR Shankaran gave voice to the idea conceived by a small group of his associates, that responsible citizens of this state cannot be content watching the Naxalites and their foes killing each other, blaming the state off and on for violating the law, and perhaps the Naxalites too sotto voce for violating revolutionary norms, he …