April 11, 2014

Fear of Maoist extremists overshadows India’s elections

As India goes to the polls in the world’s biggest democratic vote, left-wing extremism and mistrust in government threaten free elections in the eastern state of Odisha, writes Basudev Mahapatra.


As voting begins in India’s 2014 elections today political tensions are rising, as is the fear of violence by extremists intended to disrupt the biggest ever political event in a democracy. The country is going to polls today in the first phase. Poll management preparations are in full swing with security arrangements in areas of armed conflict at the top of the agenda.
A few days back, Odisha’s Director General of Police (DGP) Prakash Mishra said, “Proper coordination has been established with the police of neighbouring Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal and Jharkhand for conduct of peaceful elections in the state.”