Re-reading an Old frontier Story

Arup Kumar Sen

The naxalite movement in West Bengal was crushed in the early 1970s with brutal State terror. Multiple instances of State violence were documented in the pages of frontier under the leadership of Samar Sen, the legendary Bengali poet, journalist and editor. In the June 24, 1972 issue, an entry in the journal observed: “…Arrests of so-called extremists or Naxalites are, of course, not a new thing in West Bengal. But recently the police appear to have launched an offensive, the latest victim of which is a professor of the Indian Institute of Management…there is evidence to suggest that this time the police is going well beyond the alleged activists and turning its attention to those who, while they may be generally sympathetic to certain Naxalite positions, have not been themselves involved in political activity. The purpose may be to warn others of this category that they enjoy no immunity simply because they abstain from active involvement in politics”.

The recent arrests of some noted civil/human rights activists in India and invention of the category of “urban naxal” remind us of the old frontier story and its caption- The Hunt Continues.

Sep 13, 2018

Arup Kumar Sen [email protected]

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