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Chhattisgarh cops skip guerrilla training

india Updated: Jul 16, 2009 00:07 IST
Ejaz Kaiser

Chhattisgarh is still recovering from the shock of guerrilla attacks in Rajnandgaon that killed 33 security personnel on Sunday. As the state was planning to strike back at Left-wing extremism, their preparations were dealt a blow.

As many as 29 policemen refused to join the short-term training course at the Jungle Warfare and Counter-insurgency College at Kanker, 200 km south of Raipur. The policemen trained were to be deployed in Naxal-prone areas.

Of the 40 policemen directed to undergo warfare training before being posted in Rajnandgaon, 29 did not turn up. The Chhattisgarh police immediately suspended the truant cops.

But the suspended policemen are unfazed.

“Once I am trained in jungle warfare, I will always be posted in insurgency-affected areas. What assurance do I have that I would be considered for other areas, too?” asked constable Rakesh Singh (name changed).

The number of personnel reluctant to serve in Naxal-affected areas is growing, home minister Nanki Ram Kanwar told HT.

“If benefits are given to those posted there, why should indiscipline be tolerated?”

A number of policemen languish in Naxal-affected districts after the mandatory four months. “Only after I sustained bullet injury in my lungs was I transferred out,” said town inspector Ajitesh Singh, posted in Janjgir, not in the Red corridor.

The government acknowledges 12 of Chhattisgarh’s 18 districts were Naxal-affected.