Naxalites suspected of pilfering contraceptives

 Security forces deployed in the Naxal corridor are now reporting huge seizures of contraceptives and abortion kits from Maoist hideouts and suspect these to have been pilfered from state-run primary health centres and dispensaries.

While the forces have been intermittently coming across stocks of male condoms and contraceptive pills after Naxal raids in various states, a recent operation by the Border Security Force (BSF) in Orrisa’s Koraput district has resulted in seizure of “abortifacient kits” and pregnancy test devices leaving the force and local police puzzled over their source.

An abortifacient kit is used to induce abortion.

The operation in the jungles of Shikhapalli in mid-January resulted in the seizure of 50 male condom pouches, 10 packets of contraceptive pills, an abortifacient kit and a separate packet of emergency contraceptive pills, apart from the regular seizures of ammunition and IEDs.

Security forces like CRPF, ITBP and state police units have earlier reported seizing contraceptive material from Naxal hideouts and have informed the Union Home Ministry of these developments.

“The condoms and contraceptive pills are of ‘Nirodh’ and ‘Mala D’ variety which are distributed either free or at highly subsidised rates by various state governments at their primary health centres. The other emergency pills and abortion kits too can be obtained from health centres,” said a senior official privy to the seizures being reported in anti-Naxal operations.

“While the seizure of these devices and medicines is usual among Maoists as they have women cadre, it is essential to know how are they being procured by the ultras. Till now, they’ve been many incidents of arms and ration looting and pilferage but this is new,” the official said.

Probe on

The official said the latest seizure and others are now in the custody of various state police departments and a probe is on to find the source of their procurement. “There could also be a possibility of Maoists taking the help of their associates to procure these items from health centres or over the counter but nothing has been found conclusively,” the official added.

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