Let's strive to end Naxal menace: Amit Shah to CMs

Amit Shah
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Amit Shah

Highlights

Seeks joint action to choke flow of funds

New Delhi: Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday urged the Chief Ministers of Naxal-affected States to give priority to addressing the menace so that it can be eradicated within a year and sought a joint strategy to choke the flow of funds to the red ultras.

Addressing the Chief Ministers, State ministers and top officials of 10 Naxal-hit States, Shah said the fight against the Maoists has now reached its final phase and it needs to be accelerated and made decisive.

He said the death toll due to the Left Wing Extremism (LWE) violence has come down to 200 in a year.

The Chief Ministers who attended the meeting were K Chandrashekar Rao (Telangana), Naveen Patnaik (Odisha), Nitish Kumar (Bihar), Shivraj Singh Chouhan (Madhya Pradesh), Uddhav Thackeray (Maharashtra) and Hemant Soren (Jharkhand).

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Bhupesh Baghel of Chhattisgarh, Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy of Andhra Pradesh and Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan did not attend the meeting. Their States were represented by either a minister or senior officials.

The Home Minister urged all the Chief Ministers to give priority to the problem of Maoists, also called Left Wing Extremism, for the next one year so that a permanent solution can be found to the problem. It requires building pressure, increasing speed and better coordination, he said.

Shah said it is very important to neutralise the sources of income of the Naxals. The agencies of the central and the state governments should try to stop this by making a system together, he said.

According to sources, intensifying operations against the Naxals, action against their frontal organisations, filling up the security vacuum, choking the flow of funds to extremists and concerted action by the Enforcement Directorate, the National Investigation Agency and the state police were some of the issues discussed threadbare at the meeting.

Shah said the state administrations should be proactive and move ahead in coordination with the central forces. If a regular review is conducted at the levels of the chief minister, chief secretary and the DGP, the problems of coordination at the lower level will automatically get resolved, he said.

Observing that the LWE has claimed more than 16,000 civilian lives in the last 40 years, he said there has been a consistent decline both in the violence figure and its geographical spread in the last decade.

The incidents of LWE violence have come down by 70 percent from an all-time high of 2,258 in 2009 to 665 in 2020. The resultant deaths have also come down by 82 percent from a high of 1,005 in 2010 to 183 in 2020.

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