Naxalism and terrorism are two great challenges for a state in the twenty first century. The former is considered relatively moderate compared to terrorism and also enjoys the support of a certain section of the ‘knowledge-elite’. The reason for this differential attitude lies in the objectives of these two extremist movements. Social equity is one of the main objectives of Naxalism. Communism (adapted to regional needs) lies at the heart of the Naxalite demands.
The question that is worth pondering over is ‘How can we assimilate the communists in a society which is biased towards capitalistic values?’ I am refraining from calling India as a capitalist economy because ours is a mixed economy and thus there is enough room for both capitalist and communist principles to thrive for the benefit of this society. The word ‘socialist’ is a part of the preamble of our constitution and many of the articles particularly those belonging to the directive principles of state policy reflect this socialist leaning of our country.
Nepal is a contemporary example where Maoists (as the communists are known in this part of the world) have been assimilated into the mainstream of the society. We Indians should also follow a similar exercise and make use of the capabilities of the Naxals (some of whom are also post graduates and doctorates) in the administration of this country. This assimilation has to be done carefully so as not to create a Frankenstein’s monster. I am sure that these Naxals are people with values and will become good administrators keeping the corrupt and the wrongdoers under control. Army, police, rural development, etc are some areas of administration where the Naxals can be assimilated. It has always been said that Naxals are not inherently ‘bad’ people but their ways of bringing change is revolutionary or extremist and there is some truth in it. Let us pray for the day when Naxals will be a part of the mainstream society.