Develop Naxal-hit areas, MHA tells affected states

With fewer incidents of Naxal violence being reported in some districts of Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, the Home Ministry has asked the governments of both the states to boost development activities in these areas.

Both Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh had said that the situation had improved in four or five districts in their states as a result of better coordination between the police forces and increased operations against Naxalites, sources said.

A high-level official team from the Home Ministry--led by Additional Secretary (Naxal Management) Vinay Kumar--just returned after evaluating the situation in both states. The team visited Naxal-affected areas and held meetings with senior officials from the state governments. It stressed on the need to push development projects in areas, which showed improvement so that the people's confidence in the Government is restored.

The Home Ministry also gave its go-ahead for construction of concrete roads in interior areas of Chhattisgarh. It is difficult to plant land mines on such roads and also gives a fillip to development activities, the ministry said.

The Jharkhand Government told the Home Ministry team that it had achieved success in its fight against Naxalites in recent times. The number of operations against Naxalites rose from 75 to 77 within the first six months this year. A huge amount of arms and ammunition have also been recovered from the Naxals.

The team from the Home Ministry also visited the new police stations, which are being set up in Jharkhand with monetary help from the Centre. The team advised the state Government to take adequate precaution and ensure that the police force is not exposed to unnecessary risks.

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