Naxals were wary of frequent political activity in Bastar: Raman Singh

Under fire for security lapses that led to the deadly Maoist attack on Congress leaders in Bastar, Chhattishgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh today said naxals felt threatened by the increasing political activities in the region following which they executed the "cowardly act".

"Several political parties were conducting their activities in interior areas. Naxals took it as a challenge and carried out the cowardly act...But political activities will continue in the region (Bastar) in view of the assembly elections scheduled this year," Singh told reporters here after the all-party meet at the Mantralaya in Naya Raipur.

He also assured that security will be beefed up to ensure a safe and peaceful election.

In wake of the May 25 attack, the CM had called an all-party meet which was attended by members of NCP, CPI, CPI(M) and BSP. However, Congress boycotted it.

Over the absence of main Opposition, Singh said they (Congress) should have stood together in such a situation and given their views.

"We got key suggestions from different parties. We are working on a comprehensive plan to deal with Naxalism. Work is on ...both on a short term and long term basis," he said.

On conspiracy theories, the CM said, "A judicial probe has already been ordered and those who will be found responsible for the incident will not be spared, irrespective of their position."

Also, Naxal leaders, who are involved in the attack will be identified, caught and punished, he added.

"Bastar has become the centre of Maoist activities and they will be defeated and wiped out from here," Singh said.

Heavily-armed Maoists had on Saturday last ambushed a convoy of Congress leaders at Darbha, killing 27 people including PCC chief Patel, his son Dinesh, senior Congress leader Mahendra Karma and ex-MLA Uday Mudaliyar and injuring 37 others, including former Union minister V C Shukla.

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