[Reader-list] Fact-finding on the Kottaguda massacre 28 June 2012

asit das asit1917 at gmail.com
Tue Jul 10 12:15:22 IST 2012

*Fact-finding on the Kottaguda massacre 28 June 2012*

A three member team, consisting of JP Rao, Kopa Kunjam and Nandini Sundar
visited Kottaguda, Sarkeguda and Lingagiri villages on 3rd and 4th July

The three villages merge into each other and have been carved up in an
arbitrary fashion between different panchayats (Korsaguda and Chipurbhatti
panchayats). The field where the firing took place is an open area
surrounded by houses, some of which are in Kottaguda and some of which fall
in Rajpenta. The villagers had returned only in 2009 after Salwa Judum had
burnt their village in 2005, and are still struggling to put their cattle
together and rebuild all houses properly. The meeting on the 28th night was
held to discuss how to help those without cattle and single women headed
households, and also to plan the holding of the *bija pondum* (seed sowing
festival). The three villages share a common earth shrine – which means
they celebrate all their festivals together.

The villagers say that there were no Maoists present, and that the police
were most likely injured in cross-firing. The absence of any Maoist leaders
is supported by the fact that had there been a squad in the village, there
would have been sentries posted in the direction of Basaguda thana.

Whatever the CRPF’s claims, what is indisputable is that they knew they
were in the middle of a village and yet did not use night flares or observe
even the most basic precautions when firing. In all 17 persons have been
killed, of which 7 are minors; 9 have been injured, and at least 5 women
have been beaten/assaulted. One cow has died and one bull has been injured,
and there are bullet marks on the houses.  Two people were killed by Salwa
Judum and security forces in 2005, and almost all the houses in all three
villages were burnt.

What is shocking is not just the massacre itself but the cover up that
followed with the CRPF and Home Minister claiming that they had shot top
Naxal leaders, when they could clearly see that they had killed villagers
including small children, since 16 of the bodies were sent back that night.
The CRPF version also does not explain why one person was killed in the

We met Mr. Kuruvanshi, the SDM appointed to investigate the incident. He
seemed amused at our visit, and asked why the villagers were meeting at
night. When asked, he also said he had no plans to visit the village, and
if the villagers wished, they could come and see him. Subsequently, the
villagers have been summoned to his office on the 9th of July.

We are enclosing a statement signed by family members of each of the
deceased, three of the girls beaten/molested and other witnesses from the

JP Rao, Kopa Kunjam, Nandini Sundar
4th July 2012

Village Kottaguda, Thana Basaguda, Zilla Bijapur

*Statement by families of victims*

            On 28th June 2012, we were having a meeting in Kottaguda of
three villages – Rajpenta, Kottaguda and Sarkeguda – to discuss the
upcoming seed sowing festival and also how to help those families without
cattle and those households headed by widows. Since we were busy ploughing
and repairing our houses during the day, we decided to have the meeting in
the evening. We three villages share a common earth shrine.

            The meeting started around 8 pm. Around 9-10 pm, the CRPF, SPOs
and police came and surrounded us from all sides and started firing without
warning. It lasted one hour. Sixteen people were shot and killed at night
and also axed. Their bodies were taken away at night. The force camped in
the grounds all night. Three girls who were taking shelter in a house at
the edge of the meeting ground were pulled out, their hair pulled, beaten
and assaulted and threatened with rape. 5 injured persons were also taken
away at night. Madkam Shanti and Kaka Sarika were also beaten.

            In the morning, Irpa Munna s/o Raju, age 27 approximately was
killed when he came out of his house. When he did not fully die he was
bludgeoned to death with bricks. His body was taken away in the morning
along with two more injured.

            Irpa Dinesh s/o Raju who has four small children was shown as a
Naxalite commander, Somlu, from Korsaguda. His body was not returned to the

            They also stole Rs. 2000 from Madkam Nagesh’s house, Rs. 5000
from Irpa Raju’s house and Rs. 30,000 from Irpa Narayan’s house. They also
took Madkam Dilip’s mobile and Apka Meetu’s cycle.

            In the morning we all villagers went to the Basaguda thana but
we were not allowed in; nor did any police come out. They had taken the
injured and also arrested some 25 others. The bodies, except for Irpa
Dinesh’s, were returned on 29th evening and we cremated them the next day.
Dinesh’s body is buried in the PS.

            Our villages have suffered terribly under Salwa Judum. All 30
houses were burnt in Kottaguda in 2005, 10 out of 12 houses were burnt in
Rajpenta, and 27 out of 30 houses were burnt in Sarkeguda. Two people were
killed by Salwa Judum and police. Korsa Bhima s/o Korsa Dora, age 15 was
taken from Sarkeguda village in 2005 and killed in the thana. Madkam Balla,
s/o Dula, age 35, was killed in Basaguda thana when he had gone to buy
nails for house building. There has been no FIR and no compensation. We all
ran away to Andhra Pradesh and returned in 2009.

            We were just getting back to normal life when the CRPF attacked
us again.

*The following persons were killed (ages are approximate): *


1.       Kaka Saraswati, d/o Kaka Rama, age 12

2.       Kaka Samaiyya, s/o Kaka Dula, age 33 (Voter ID card)

3.       Kaka Ravul (Rahul) s/o Narayan, 10th class student, age 16

4.       Ram Vilas Madkam, s/o Madkam Buchaiya, 10th class student, age 16


5.       Madkam Nagesh, s/o Malla, age 35 (Voter ID card)

6.       Madkam Suresh, s/o Malla, age 25 (brother of Nagesh)

7.       Irpa Munna s/o Raju, age 27 (aka as Ramesh)

8.       Irpa Dinesh s/o Raju, age 20-22 (brother of Munna, father of 4

9.       Irpa Narayan s/o Mutta, age 52 (Voter ID card)

10.   Irpa Dharmaiyya s/o Bhima, age 40-45

11.   Irpa Suresh, s/o Chandraiyya age 10

12.   Madkam Dilip s/o Mutta, age 17


13.   Sarke Ramanna s/o Potti, age 25

14.   Apka Mutta s/o Sukram, age 16

15.   Madvi Aitu s/o Bhima, age 35-40

16.   Kunjam Malla s/o Urra, age 12-15

17.   Korsa Bichem s/o Gotta, age 20

*The following people were injured and taken away by the forces *


1.       Korsa Raju s/o Bhima, age 21-25

2.       Sarke Pullaya s/o Kistayya, age 22 (not taken to hospital, doing
herbal remedies in village)

3.       Apka Chotu s/o Bhima, age 14-18


4.       Madkam Soma s/o Bhima, age 29/30

5.       Kaka Shenti s/o Lacha, age 19

6.       Irpa Chinakka, w/o Irpa Narsa, age 40

7.       Kaka Ramesh s/o Kistaiyya, age 10-12

8.       Kaka Parvati d/o Kistaiyya, age 9-10

9.       Irpa Munna s/o Lacha age 25 (doing herbal remedies at home, not
taken by forces)

*Girls beaten and molested *


1.       Sruti Barse d/o Subbarao, age 15

2.       Irpa Pushpa d/o Dharmaiyya, age 16

3.       Irpa Lalita, d/o Rama, age 17-18

(These 3 girls were pulled out of Lalita’s house, threatened with rape and

4.       Kaka Sarika d/o Kaka Kama, age 16 (Sarika and her aunt Karam Dare
were running and pulled to the ground by a CRPF man. Later they were beaten
and taken where all the villagers had been assembled by the forces, before
they were taken to thana)

5.       Madkam Shanti w/o Madkam Balla, age 30 (She was beaten while

 (Sruti, Sarika and Madkam Shanti have all signed this statement)

Please give us justice. We are also citizens of this country.

Signed by family members of all deceased and others in village

 4th July 2012

*Testimony on Killing of Madkam Balla*

My husband Madkam Balla was killed in 2005 when he had gone to Basaguda to
buy nails, and from there he went to Lingagiri. He was killed there by the
police – he was shot in the back while running – and his body was taken to
the thana. His body was returned to the village after it rotted, after 6
days. There was no FIR and no compensation.

Please give me justice. I have six children.

I was also beaten on 28th night when CRPF killed 17 people from our


Madkam Shanti, w/o Madkam Balla, Kottaguda

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