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CMs of Naxal-hit States to Meet Today on New Strategy to Tackle Red Terror

New Delhi: Chief ministers of Naxal-affected are to meet top civil and police officers on Monday to devise new ways to tackle the armed rebels.

The meeting, which comes in the wake of 25 CRPF men killed by a band of Maoists in Chhattisgarh, will be chaired by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.

The meet will help firm up an anti-Naxal strategy to fight the guerillas in their hideouts in Chhattisgarh and other states in the coming days, a Home Ministry official told PTI.

The chief ministers of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal, Bihar, Maharashtra, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh have been invited to take part in the crucial meeting.

The Union home ministry said a holistic review of the situation will be undertaken covering a wide canvas of security and development issues, particularly infrastructure building.

District magistrates and superintendents of police of 35 of the worst-hit Naxalite-affected districts, along with heads of paramilitary forces and intelligence agencies, will attend the meeting.

The stress is likely to be on revamping the intelligence gathering mechanism, meticulous analysis of ongoing operations, identifying problem areas and seeking solutions for better results.

The home minister has told the security officials to look for out-of-the box solutions to the problem of successive attacks by Naxalites when security personnel oversee road repair or development work in the troubled areas.

Road construction and other development activities in the affected areas will also be discussed. The chief ministers may endorse an alternative modern technology which would help with the speedy completion of projects.

Home Ministry officials said currently 90 per cent of Maoist activities were limited to 35 districts, though they have a hold over pockets in 68 districts in 10 states.

The meeting will focus on devising new strategies to maintain the momentum achieved in 2016, notwithstanding a couple of incidents, the home ministry said in a statement.

It will include two sessions to discuss upon operational issues like role of States in Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) operations, raising and employment of India Reserve (IR) battalions and Special India Reserve Battalion (SIRB), etc, capacity building and intelligence issues like vacancies in state police forces, capacity building of state intelligence units, etc and other ministry-wise related matters.

The statement said the Central government has a multi-pronged strategy centred around security, development and ensuring rights and entitlements of local communities etc.

The Centre has been providing assistance to states in terms of CAPF battalions, intelligence, training and capacity building of state police forces.

It is also assisting the states through schemes that support building of infrastructure, specially road, railways and power etc.

Development issues will also be discussed with a view to ensure quick development of LWE-affected areas, the statement said.

(With PTI inputs)

First Published: May 8, 2017, 7:05 AM IST