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Top Naxalite leader surrenders

Top Naxalite leader surrenders

Publication: The New Indian Express
Date: April 16, 2004

Alleging growing contradictions and dishonesty in the movement, a high-ranking ideologue of the Outlawed People's War (PW), Pilla Venkateshwar Rao alias Gautam, who carried a reward of Rs 10 lakh on his head, surrendered to the police on Thursday.

Rao, a 46-year-old lecturer by profession, was known as `master'. He handled political classes for the PW cadre across the country and has been shaping them for the past two decades. He was also the leader of the Central Committee of CPI-ML (PW) - Sub-Committee on Political Education (SCOPE).

Speaking to reporters, Venkateswar Rao said that he has decided to leave the organisation, with which he had 22 year association, as he was disillusioned with the functioning and policies of PW's leadership.

"I have lost faith in the present leadership due to political dishonesty, stifling and inherent contradictions. The party has been continuously losing its mass base in Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh right from 1999, while the focus has been only on militarisation of cadre. In the given circumstances, I do not think the revolution will ever succeed," Rao said.

A revolutionary party loses its ideological, political and organisational base only when the degeneration of leadership sets in. "Let the PW claim today that they have maintained the party on Communist ideologies during the past two years," he said.

Declining to specify the issues on which he differed with PW leadership, Rao, however, said that on the issue of poll boycott, the organisation was adopting a "self contradictory and politically dishonest" stand by targeting the TD-BJP combine while allowing the other political parties to campaign.

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