The Violations of Human Rights by Left-Wing Extremist (LWE) Groups
An Overlooked Challenge
Since the conflict between the government and the Left Wing Extremists (LWEs) has escalated, hundreds of thousands of people have either being killed or displaced. Human rights violations continue to be the biggest concern in the LWE conflict zone. While human rights violations by the government forces have been highlighted regularly by human rights organisations, the UN and other international actors – including regular scrutiny by the Indian Supreme Court and the National Human Rights Commission (not to say that they have been brought to justice) – human rights violations committed by LWEs have gone largely unnoticed. LWEs have killed civilians, tortured and brutally executed their captives, and recruited children in their armed cadres, showing no mercy to even those who decide to stay neutral. Further, the conflict between the government and LWE forces has become so intense that a small but increasing number of academicians have also suggested the conflict to be treated under international law and to be considered as non-international armed conflict (NIAC). While there is a strong legal argument behind this suggestion and such move will highlight LWEs side of human rights abuses at the international level, tactically the government would not gain much with this approach.