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Root of Indian Maoists and Naxalites

  • Published at 10:44 pm October 24th, 2016
Root of Indian Maoists and Naxalites

Maoists are also known as "Naxalites" because of the violent left-wing uprising in 1967, which began in the West Bengal village of Naxalbari.

Although this was eventually quashed by police, over the years India's Maoists have regrouped and asserted control over vast swathes of land in central and eastern India, establishing a so-called "red corridor".

This spans the states of Jharkand, West Bengal, Orissa, Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh and also reaches into Uttar Pradesh, and Karnataka.

The Maoists and affiliated groups are active in more than a third of India's 600-odd districts, the authorities say. And more than 6,000 people have died in the rebels' long fight for communist rule in these states.


Maoism originated in China as a form of Communist theory derived from the teachings of the Chinese political leader Mao Zedong. Developed during 1950s and 1960s ,It was widely applied as the political and military guiding ideology of the Communist Party of China till 1977-78. It emphasised the advancement of people’s social and economic life by establishing a classless society through armed revolution. It was rooted in the anti-imperialist struggle and supported armed revolution in order to achieve political transformation. Maoism sees the agrarian peasantry, rather than the working class, as the key revolutionary force which can fundamentally transform capitalist society towards socialism. Holding philosophy that "Power flow from the barrel of the gun".


Naxalism originated in India as a rebellion against lack of development and poverty at the local level in the rural parts of eastern India. The term ‘Naxal’ derives its name from a village called Naxalbari in the State of West Bengal where the movement had its origin. Initially their ideology comprises of Marx and Lenin.Later on they also influenced by communist theory of Mao Zedong.

Difference between them

Maoism wants to take control of government and run their own government to enforce their ideology on whole country. During uprising of Maoism in china it became political and military guiding ideology of the Communist Party of China. So here we can see Maoism ideology as a national ideology of Mao Zedong while during uprising of Naxalism it was a workers (rural area) revolt against their masters and landlords against marginalisation of the poor or rural areas.

Maoism aim was to fundamentally transform country towards socialism while Naxalism which originated in India was anger of worker class people.

Now, Naxalite following Moist theory to achieve the same. Through the merger of the People's War and the Maoist Communist Centre (MCC), Communist Party of India (Maoist) was formed in 2004 which aims to overthrow the government of India through people's war. Now a days Naxalite work mostly under the influence of the CPI-Maoist. It is currently proscribed as a terrorist organisation by the Indian government for organizing mass killings in furtherance of their ideology.

So initially there were some difference in ideology of Naxalism And Maoism during their uprising but now Naxalites follow Maoist ideologies to achieve the same.

Maoist aims

Analysts say the longevity of the Maoist rebellion is partly due to the local support they receive. The rebels say they are fighting for the rights of indigenous tribes people and the rural poor who they say have been neglected by governments for decades.

Maoists claim to represent local concerns over land ownership and equitable distribution of resources. Ultimately they say they want to establish a "communist society" by overthrowing India's "semi-colonial, semi-feudal" form of rule through armed struggle.

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