What is Naxalism and what are its basic principles?

Asked 18-Feb-2021
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The Naxalites, also sometimes called the Naxals, is used to define groups waging a violent struggle on behalf of landless labourers and tribal people against landlords and others. The Naxalites say they are fighting oppression and exploitation to create a classless society. Other people believe that they are terrorist groups trying to produce disharmony and rage among citizens.

A naxalite is a member of militant political organization that claims the legacy of the Communist Party of India-Marxist- Leninist.


  • they claim to represent the most oppressed people in India.
  • They say that they help those who are often left untouched by India's development and bypassed by the electoral process. 
  • They claim to be against India because according to them, Indians are still to acquire freedom from hunger and deprivation the rich classes.
  • Their aim is to overthrow the present system, hence they target politicians, police officers and men, forest contractors, etc.
  • At a more local level, the Naxalites have targeted landlords in the villages, often claiming protection money from them.

Their background and history:

This movement of Naxalites came into effect when some members of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) split to form the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) . The CPI-M decided to participate in elections and form a coalition government in West Bengal. Thus, half of the group split from CPI-M.

The major event occurred when on May 25, 1967, in Naxalbari village (WB) local goons attacked a tribal who had been given land by the courts under the tenancy laws. In retaliation, the tribals attacked landlords and claimed the land. From this 'Naxalbari Uprising' came the word Naxalite.

Criticism against Naxalism:

  • They are criticised by the entire India on the grounds of spreading terrorism and fear among the civilians They are believed to take law in their hands as they do not adhere by any law. 
  • The terrorism spread by Naxalites at the local and village level has forced the govt. to provide armed and military protection to the people . These activities are centered around BIhar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal borders among others

What is Naxalism and what are its basic principles?