Assuring total cooperation to Jharkhand in fighting Maoists’ menace, Union home minister P Chidambaram on Wednesday said that the Centre would release Rs 770 crore under the integrated action plan (IAP) to carry out development activities in leftwing extremist-hit districts in the current fiscal.
Soon after taking stock of the recent anti-Naxal drive and status of development initiatives undertaken by the State government at a high-level meeting here, Chidambaram said each of the Naxal-violence affected districts would be getting Rs 55 crore for development activities under the IAP. He also stressed for cent percent utilisation of IAP fund released earlier by March-end.
Lauding the role of police, the Union home minister said there had been some significant successes during anti-Naxal operations during the months June to October. “However, casualty of police and civilians are unacceptably high, which had to be brought down. There is lot to be done by the Jharkhand government on that front,” he said, adding that the Centre was really with all its resources to help the State fight the red menace.
During the high-level meeting attended by chief minister Arjun Munda and senior officers, the Union minister has also approved the State government’s long-pending demand for bring three more districts—Ranchi, Khunti and Chaibasa—under the IAP. With this, 17 out of 24 districts would be getting the Central fund under the IAP. Additional allotments would be made for the newly included districts.
Principally agreeing to the State government’s demand, Chidambaram also assured to provide seven more battalions of the Central para-military force (CPMF). Officials present in the meeting said five more battalions of the CRPF and two of the Cobra would be joining the State police to intensify operation against the Naxals. “Two CRPF battalions would reach very shortly,” said the Union minister.
This apart, the Centre also okayed Rs 100-crore central assistance to the State for providing necessary infrastructure and training facility for Jharkhand Jaguar, a specialised police force raised by the State to take on the leftwing extremists. “The grant would come in equated annual instalments for five years,” said a senior police officer.
Jharkhand chief secretary SK Chaudhary, home secretary JB Tubid, director general (DG) of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) K Vijay Kumar, his Jharkhand counterpart GS Rath, DRPF additional DG (operation) PM Nair were among the senior officials present in the meeting.