IAF to take adequate steps to counter Naxals: Chidambaram
Indian Air Force will take adequate counter-measures to protect its choppers and pilots from Naxal attacks, Home Minister P Chidambaram said today. Naxals brutally killed abducted intelligence officer Francis Indwar in Jharkhand yesterday.india Updated: Oct 24, 2009 20:52 IST
Government on Wednesday said the Indian Air Force will take adequate counter-measures to protect its choppers and pilots from Naxal attacks.
"The IAF will take adequate counter-measures," Home Minister P Chidambaram said when asked about IAF seeking permission from the Defence Ministry to open fire at Naxals if its helicopters or air crew came under attack.
However, the Home Minister refused to reveal any details.
Chidambaram said an IAF helicopter was fired at by the Maoists a few weeks back in Chhattisgarh.
Air Chief Marshal P V Naik had said the IAF had sought permission from the Defence Ministry to open fire in self-defence if its helicopters or air crew operating in the Maoist-infested areas came under attack.
'Confronting naxal is no war'
A day after Naxals brutally killed intelligence office Francis Indwar in Jharkhand, Home Minister P Chidambaram said today that if Naxals would abjure violence, the government can talk to them.
"The government does not call confronting Naxals a war. We do not wage war against our own people," he said.
It is the Naxals who are holding up to armed struggle, he added.
He clarified that as Naxals claim to be working for poor, the government also is working for the poor people. He said, the government can work togehter with Naxals but for this they would have to leave violence.