News Brief

Facing Cash Crunch Amid Security Forces' Crackdown, Maoists In Chhattisgarh Resort To Printing Fake Currency

Kuldeep Negi

Jun 23, 2024, 02:33 PM | Updated 02:33 PM IST

A Maoist rally (Wikimedia Commons) 
A Maoist rally (Wikimedia Commons) 

In a significant anti-naxal operation in Chhattisgarh's Sukma district, security forces have uncovered a Maoist-run counterfeit currency operation, which could destabilise the local economy.

This marks the first time that equipment used for printing fake currency has been found in Maoist camps.

The discovery was made during a joint search operation by Sukma Police, the District Reserve Guard, and the CRPF in the Korajguda forests.

Acting on intelligence reports, the forces launched a search, and found currency printing machines, ink, templates, and fake notes in denominations of Rs 50, Rs 100, Rs 200, and Rs 500.

Additional items, including a gun, a wireless set, and a large quantity of explosives, were also seized.

The Maoists, however, managed to flee before the forces arrived.

District police chief Kiran Chavan explained that the discovery indicates a significant financial strain on the Maoists, likely due to sustained security operations that have disrupted their traditional funding sources.

"The way they are printing notes, it is understood that the Naxalite organization is facing a shortage of money. The ongoing operations in the interior areas have significantly reduced their funding, prompting them to resort to printing counterfeit currency," the senior officer said, NDTV reported.

The use of fake currency in local markets by Maoists, who frequently buy supplies from weekly village markets, poses a serious threat to the regional economy.

To combat this, local authorities and security forces are initiating awareness campaigns in villages, urging residents to be vigilant and reject any suspicious currency.

Traders and hawkers, especially in remote areas, are being advised to carefully check notes before accepting them.

Since 2022, Maoists have reportedly trained members in printing counterfeit currency to address their cash shortages. This fake currency has been used in local markets, becoming part of the cash system.

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Kuldeep is Senior Editor (Newsroom) at Swarajya. He tweets at @kaydnegi.

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