Who Is Hidma Madvi, the Suspected Mastermind of the Sukma Attack?
The 32-year-old Maoist leader, labelled as ruthless, is perceived as a role model for youth in the region.
All of 32, Hidma Madvi has already been likened to Napoleon Bonaparte and is considered to be a "hero worshipped by his followers".
These are labels for a man who has played a key role in the Maoist movement, being suspected as the mastermind of the infamous Naxal ambush in Sukma on 24 April, which claimed the lives of 25 CRPF personnel, and also another attack on 11 March in the same region, where 12 personnel of the central forces were killed. The former attack was the worst in seven years.
Madvi has also been called ruthless and extremely dangerous. In an interview with Rediff, a CRPF official refused to share a picture of him, detailing how this would put the life of the informer who leaked the picture in danger.
He will find out the person who leaked his photographs to us through the location, his dress, the people around him in these photographs. He will then hunt down the informer and eliminate him ruthlessly.CRPF officer to Rediff
Born in a village called Purvati in Chhattisgarh's Bastar district – the nerve-centre of the Naxal movement – Hidma is the leader of the first military battalion of the CPI (Maoist). He is also seen as belonging to a new crop of Adivasi leadership in the Naxal movement, distinct from the leaders of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, who have usually dominated.
His jurisdiction extends to Bijapur, Dantewada and south Sukma, and he is a member of a military dalam – a sophisticated Naxal unit comprising members characterised by their mobility and training in "the use of heavy weapons".
There are also concerns among the police about how Madvi is seen as a role model by many youngsters in the areas.
With anti-Naxal operations having intensified in the region after this year's Sukma attack, Madvi has become the most sought-after man among the security forces.
The CRPF official who compared him to Napoleon in the interview with Rediff also had ominous words for him:
He may have been successful till now, but he too will meet his Waterloo.CRPF official
(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)
Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.