Saturday, January 26, 2008

Centre plans to develop 33 Naxalite-infested districts

Friday January 25 2008 06:00 IST

KHAMMAM: To check the growing influence of the Maoists, the Central Government is planning to develop 33 worst Naxal-hit districts in the country by allocating additional funds.

According to official sources, Of the 33 Maoist-infested districts, Khammam in Andhra Pradesh, Dantewada in Chhattisgarh, Malkangiri and Koraput in Orissa have been identified for taking up these programmes.
Khammam district faces a unique problem compared to other Naxal-infested districts as the Bhadrachalam agency is located on the borders of Orissa, Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra where Maoists have considerable influence.

As Chhattisgarh and Orissa borders have thick forest cover, the job of Khammam district police has become more difficult to track down the movements of the Maoists especially after they resort to violence in Andhra Pradesh and escape to Chattisgarh.

According to police records, there are seven dalams comprising 50 Maoists in the district. Four dalams in Bhadrachalam area, one in Aswaraopet and two in Yellandu are still active. While 30 Maoists are from Khammam district, others hail from Warangal district and neighbouring state of Chhattisgarh.

Besides taking up developmental activities, the Union Home Ministry has also decided to provide additional police forces to fight the Maoists.

At a meeting held recently at Raipur in Chhattisgarh, which was attended by senior police officers from Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and Chhattisgarh, it has been decided that coordinated efforts from the three states was the only way to curb the Naxalites.

As part of the agreement, it has been decided to exchange information and conduct joint combing operations. Khammam superintendent of police DS Chowhan also attended the meet.

Speaking to this website’s newspaper, Chowhan said that cooperation from the neighbouring states was sought to tackle the Maoists.

As a result of the combined efforts, many Maoists have given up arms in recent time. Some of them have been arrested and five Maoists had been killed in encounters, he said.

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