Hearts and Mines: A District Level Empirical Analysis of the Maoist Conflict in India

International Area Studies Review, 15(2), 2012

30 Pages Posted: 9 Jan 2017

See all articles by Kristian Hoelscher

Kristian Hoelscher

University of Oslo

Jason Miklian

International Peace Research Institute, Oslo (PRIO); University of Oslo - Centre for Development and the Environment

Krishna Chaitanya Vadlamannati

University College Dublin (UCD) - Department of Politics

Date Written: January 5, 2017

Abstract

India’s rapid economic growth over the last decade has been coupled with a Maoist insurgency that competes for the allegiances of rural populations with the state. In response to the threat, the Government of India has securitized development, using public works programs in an attempt to sway locals away from Maoist allegiance. However, these areas are also home to massive iron, coal, and steel factories that drive India’s growth. This study uniquely aimed to address the lack of local-level analysis and the lack of a robust dataset by merging previous qualitative fieldwork with disparate conflict data sources at the district level to explore different potential explanatory variables for the Maoist insurgency, including the relationship between development works, violence, and natural resource extraction. We find that while effective implementation of development programs like NREGA may indeed be loosely related to the suppression of violent activities in districts affected by the Maoist conflict, it is the presence of significant mining activity that is the best predictor of violence.

Keywords: Socio-economic development, Maoist conflict, insurgency, India, resource war, civil conflict

Suggested Citation

Hoelscher, Kristian and Miklian, Jason and Vadlamannati, Krishna Chaitanya, Hearts and Mines: A District Level Empirical Analysis of the Maoist Conflict in India (January 5, 2017). International Area Studies Review, 15(2), 2012, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2894427

Kristian Hoelscher

University of Oslo ( email )

PO Box 6706 St Olavs plass
Oslo, N-0317
Norway

Jason Miklian

International Peace Research Institute, Oslo (PRIO) ( email )

Oslo
N-0260 Oslo
Norway

University of Oslo - Centre for Development and the Environment ( email )

P.O. Box 1116 Blindern
K1A 0G9
0317 Oslo
Norway

Krishna Chaitanya Vadlamannati (Contact Author)

University College Dublin (UCD) - Department of Politics ( email )

Belfield
Dublin 4
Ireland

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