'No alternative to centre's involvement in maoist areas' | delhi | Hindustan Times
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'No alternative to centre's involvement in maoist areas'

delhi Updated: Oct 12, 2011 01:20 IST
Prasad Nichenametla
Prasad Nichenametla
Hindustan Times
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The central government is slow in finance and execution of development works in Maoist-hit areas, Union minister for rural development Jairam Ramesh observed.

The minister, delivering the Sardar Patel Memorial Lecture organised on Tuesday, identified the Chhattisgarh-Maharashtra-Andhra Pradesh, Orissa-Chattisgarh-Andhra Pradesh, Orissa-Jharkhand-Chattisgarh and Orissa-West Bengal-Jharkhand as tri-junctions of Left wing extremist activity on the lines of Naxalbari, Jangalmahal and Hasnabad -the erstwhile epicentre of Class Struggle.

"The challenge is to quickly improve infrastructure - roads and bridges - more specifically that enables basic developmental activities to be carried out. My view is that there is no alternative to the central government stepping in for financing and executing these tri-junction infrastructure works. It is not happening at the speed at which it is required," Ramesh said.

Last year, the Centre had launched an Integrated Action Plan providing block grant of R55 crore for 2010-12 for 60 Naxal districts to plug gaps in development. Ramesh favoured land reforms, recognition of tribal rights as a solution to the problem.

"Empowering the tribals, who are essentially victims, by giving access to basics, by giving them what is theirs by right and by securing their livelihoods, is to my mind, an absolute undiluted must," Ramesh said.

On October 28, after almost four years of its notification, the National Land Reforms Council will meet to discuss land reforms in the country.