Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Centre turns heat on CRPF

Gyan Varma / DNA Wednesday, November 25, 2009 9:28 IST Email

New Delhi: The government, which is under pressure to stop the rampage of Maoists around the country, is in turn pushing the paramilitary forces to start its anti-Maoist operations at the earliest and show results.

The home ministry had brought together seven states and three paramilitary forces to start the coordinated efforts against Maoists, especially in Chhattisgarh where the red brigade is enjoying a free run. However, the mega-operations have been delayed since September.

Senior officials in the central reserve police force (CRPF) said that the paramilitary force is being pressurised to start the operations at the earliest. The Centre had planned a mega anti-Maoist operations from September, but this got delayed because of elections in three states. With the process of elections over, at least for the time being, the anti-Maoist operations could start within a few weeks.

"For a long time, we did not acknowledge that the Maoists were growing stronger, but there is a greater sense of realisation now. We have changed our tactics and training and we will have Maoists on the run very soon. The areas under their control would be taken back soon," said AS Gill, the director general of CRPF.

The extent of the problem could be gauged from the fact that this year's anti-Maoist operations used up over 33,000 rounds of ammunition, over 300 weapons and nearly 500 kgs of explosives. To top it all, 65 CRPF personnel died fighting the rebels, sources said.

"We are in the process of completing the training of the members of our intelligence wing. We will start deploying by early January. We need to use the intelligence wing because Maoists are very well-planned," said Gill.

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