Naxals allowed to marry but not parenthood

Kanker: Naxals in Chhattisgarh are allowed to get married but they are forced by their senior leaders to undergo vasectomy surgical procedure to prevent them from having children.

This was revealed by Naxals who surrendered before the police officials here yesterday. Nearly half a dozen hardcore Maoists, including four women, all members of the Bastar Divisional Committee, surrendered at district headquarters.

They were Sunil Kumar Matlam and his wife Jaini alias Jayanti; Ramdas and his wife Panidobir; Susheela; Jaylal and his wife Asmani alias Sanay and Samo Mandvi. They said Naxal leaders, mostly based in Andhra Pradesh, behave rudely with them and punish them for falling in love.

Matlam (31) told PTI that three Naxals surrendered along with their wifes and all three were forced to undergo vasectomy before marriage.

A resident of Fufgaon village in Kanker district, Matlam said he was only 17 when he was picked up by Naxals from his village and forced to join their rank. He came in contact with Jayanti, a Naxal commander, and later fell in love with her. When they expressed their wish to get married, the leaders accepted their relationship but did not allow them to start their family.

The Naxal leaders told Matlam that he can tie the knot but only if he agreed to undergo the permanent contraception procedure, the Maoist said, adding that he had no other option but to bow to the diktat. Matlam said he has now given up arms and joined the social mainstream, and wants to lead a normal life.

Ramdas and Jaylal also had the similar tales to share about their personal life in the Naxal movement. Matlam said if a Naxal refuses to obey the command, he is tortured and forced to undergo vasectomy for which doctors from West Bengal are called in the jungle.

The Maoist leaders feel once the couples have children they may go back to their villages to raise them and this may weaken the Naxal movement, he said.

Matlam`s wife Jayanti said women Naxals are often subjected to harassment and abuse by their seniors. Jayanti said now that they have joined the national mainstream, it was the Government`s responsibility to protect their families and provide rehabilitation.

Kanker Superintendent of Police Rahul Bhagat, who played a key role in the surrender, said he had been receiving reports about forced vasectomy on Naxals.