The book is written by a serving government servant who is widely regarded for his insights on Naxalism, in the context of the conflict. The author Shri Giridhari Nayak IPS has been battling with the naxal problem for more than a decade as the Inspector General of Bastar Range/ operations/Special intelligence branch. The author has delved upon the history, philosophy, strategy, tactics and offensive design of the naxalites. The book has been written to inform a general reader and to enlighten the specialists and practitioners of the state. In other words, it may be treated as an A to Z of the Naxal problem. The name of the book is suggestive. It presupposes that the Neo-Naxal Challenge is an evolution of the old menace, outcome of the mutated objective and reorganisation of the first phase of Naxalites. The author faced an extremely difficult task of keeping an issue as multivariate as naxalism , interesting for the general reader.
Initially, historical and empirical facts are introduced and gradually the patterns are emphasised to aid the reader to deduce certain themes that have guided the evolution of the whole phenomenon. The real joy of reading from this book emerges when one studies the astute analysis of protracted war and the dynamic combat situation. For instance, the author emphasises on the theme, ‘the fast beats the slow’ to project the dynamics and the evolution of a new face of the phenomenon which may be unidentifiable from even the recent past but not unpredictable! The book has 13 well knit chapters. The first chapter deals with historical development of the movement, its nature, dimension and modus operandi.
Second chapter deals with revolutionary united front and revolutionary politics and its mechanism of advancing armed movement through mass movement and causing political sabotage and ultimately strategic paralysis. Third chapter deals with various facets of public resistance movement of Bastar with focus on socio-economic implications of the movement and its repercussions on naxalites. Fourth chapter deals with the much debated topic of dialogue with naxal from historical and empirical point of view. The fifth chapter underscores that development with public participation is the solution and security is the precondition for addressing naxal problem. The concept of ‘operational capacity requirements’ is introduced in the sixth chapter.
The idea is built around the three concepts of, capacity matrix of security force and Naxalites, the capacity gap and capacity building which are deemed essential for fighting an extraordinary problem. Chapter seven is a compendium of life experiences and successes which allow people to imagine the state of conflict and could facilitate its transformation. Chapter eight is a theoretical model of police post protection based on the above apperception. Chapter nine underlines the menace of mines largely used by Naxalites. The intensity and impact model of chapter 10 is a dynamic model which helps to identify the escalation or reduction of naxalites’ activity as the case may be on the ground. The chapter 11presents the ‘Model Action plan’ which provides a novel conceptual design to study, understand and create framework on the ground to fight the naxalites.
In chapter 12 the author has forcefully mentioned that the regime can effectively counter naxal challenge by innovative tactics and good strategic planning, strategic coordination of forces and resources. The concluding chapter ‘What Need to be Done’ prescribes the nuances for achieving nation building process and preventing nation destroying process and many de-escalation initiatives to resolve the conflict. The author cannot be distinguished from the rest of the Indian masses who are anguished with the menace of Naxalism and in the conclusion the author makes a fervent appeal to Indian democratic forces to target the naxal menace.