Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Focus shifts to security of installations

Express News ServiceFirst Published : 22 Dec 2009 04:41:00 AM ISTLast Updated :

BHUBANESWAR: The focus has now shifted to the security of vital installations in the State with the Maoists damaging the Balimela hydel power station in an attack last night.

This has also highlighted the extent to which the Left-wing extremists (LWEs) have entrenched themselves in the State. This is for the first time that the Maoists have attacked a power project in southern Orissa which is in their clutch for a long time now.

The cause for worry is that there are several other vital installations in the region which remain unguarded even after this attack.

The State Government is yet to take stock of the situation formally except for deciding that the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) will be deployed at Balimela and other key installations.

However, the State Government does not have the required number of central paramilitary forces to be deployed in Naxaliteaffected districts and guard key installations.

Sources maintained that the State may receive additional CRPF after the Jharkhand elections. In its memorandum submitted to the 13th Finance Commission (TFC), the State Government maintained that infrastructure to combat the LWEs is inadequate as most of the Naxal-hit districts are newly created with poor infrastructure.

The State Government has sought Rs 41 crore for infrastructure of 100 new police stations with fortification. The Chief Minister had announced after the Naxalite attack on Nayagarh town in 2006 that police stations in the affected areas will be fortified.

Besides, Rs 17.32 crore has been sought for basic training, while Rs 10 crore is required for anti-extremist training. The State has also sought Rs 4.26 crore for upgradation of intelligence. The memorandum has demanded Rs 18 crore special assistance for infrastructure development in LWE districts.

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