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Integrated Action Plan for Naxal-hit districts in few days: HM

india Updated: Aug 04, 2010 15:45 IST

Planning Commission will be ready with the final draft of the Integrated Action Plan (IAP) for development of Naxal-hit districts in the next few days, Home Minister P Chidambaram said on Wednesday.

The Plan panel has been asked to enlarge the scope of the IAP to cover maximum number of the 83 Naxal-affected districts in seven states, he informed the Rajya Sabha during Question Hour.

Planning Commission deputy chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia had last month indicated that IAP may include a Rs 13,742 crore financial package for the 35 worst-hit districts.

Chidambaram said development was the first part of the two-pronged strategy for dealing with the problem of naxalism and added that IAP will apply to districts beyond the 35 affected ones.

He said there was no evidence to suggest that Naxalites were receiving money from abroad. But "there are evidences that the weapons are being smuggled from abroad... from across Myanmar border and from across Bangladesh border."

"These are porous borders," he said. Fencing of border with Bangladesh has been taken up but with Myanmar it was not being done due to difficult terrain.

The Home Minister said unified command will be set up in Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Jharkhand and Orissa to deal with the Naxal problem. Chhattisgarh already has such a command.

The unified command will be headed by Chief Secretary and comprise DGP, Development Commissioner, IG Operations from CRPF, IG Naxal Operations, a retired army major general and representatives of intelligence agencies.

"This has been agreed to by the four chief ministers," he said.

CRPF battalions before being deployed in Naxal operations are trained in jungle warfare. "CRPF is a well trained is not correct to say Maoists have weapons that are superior (to those used by CRPF)," he said.

Chidambaram said with development being the focus, large amounts of funds have been made available to state governments but only 66 per cent have been spent so far.

"A two-pronged strategy - development and police action -has been agreed upon and in meetings (with chief ministers of Naxal-affected states), fine tuning of the strategy has been done in accordance with state specific requirements," he said.

State governments deal with the various issues related to naxalite activities, while the Centre supplements the efforts on both development and security fronts through several ways.

The Centre provides paramilitary forces, sanctions India Reserve battalions, sets up counter insurgency and anti-terrorism schools and gives assistance for development works, he added.