Government ready for talks with Lalgarh tribals, says Buddhadeb | india | Hindustan Times
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Government ready for talks with Lalgarh tribals, says Buddhadeb

West Bengal CM Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said the state government was ready to hold talks with tribals on their grievances, and appealed to the Lalgarh villagers not to get provoked by Maoist rebels and not let themselves be used as human shields by the Left radicals.

india Updated: Jun 18, 2009 20:05 IST

West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee on Thursday said the state government was ready to hold talks with tribals on their grievances, and appealed to the Lalgarh villagers not to get provoked by Maoist rebels and not let themselves be used as human shields by the Left radicals.

"The Maoists are using innocent villagers, women and children as human shields. Don't let yourself be used like shields. Don't fall prey to their provocations," the chief minister said in a statement as the state and central forces launched an operation to flush out Maoists from Lalgarh in West Midnapore district.

"The government is prepared to hold discussions with the people of the area about their problems," Bhattacharjee said.

"Go back home," he told the villagers, who were seen putting up a human shield in the vicinity of Lalgarh to stop the advancing security forces.

State Chief Secretary Ashok Mohan Chakraborty claimed police have not faced any resistance from armed people.

"The police have gone there to restore peace and rule of law and to protect lives of innocent people," he said.