Friday, April 17, 2009

Naxal attacks were expected: officials

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: While expressing concern over naxal violence in four States, the Union Home Ministry on Thursday said the latest violence by the CPI (Maoist) and other naxal groups on the day of polling was not unexpected.

It asserted that the government was determined to foil the nefarious designs of the naxals to derail the poll process.

Senior officials of the Ministry said the CPI (Maoist) and other extremist groups, as a part of their agenda to prevent the democratic and development processes, had, as in the past, been propagating boycott of the general elections.

To vitiate the atmosphere, the extremists had been holding meetings and putting up posters and banners in certain States. They had also indulged in wanton violence during the last fortnight.

Officials said well-armed naxal cadres targeted Central para-military forces, ranging from the Border Security Force (BSF) to the Central Industrial Security Force.

Observers said the ability of naxal groups to target well-armed convoys of the security forces and their units, indicated they would attack Central para-military forces on the day of polling.

Home Ministry officials said the State governments had been urged to take measures to counter the naxal propaganda aimed at depriving the people of their democratic rights. They said that intelligence inputs and close coordination with the State governments resulted in pro-active measures.

They said security forces made large recoveries of explosives, landmines and improvised explosive devices over the past few days. In encounters with the security forces, at least 19 naxal cadres were killed over the past week.

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