Unable to get photographs of top naxal leaders, security forces in the country's Maoist hotbeds are being provided with sketches of these ultras.
The naxal leadership of the country has largely remained faceless. In few cases, the photographs of naxal ringleaders have been sourced from old police records of state governments.
But since the pictures of numerous top naxal leaders are not available, artists have been asked to draw sketches based on details provided by arrested Maoists.
"The security forces, both state and central, are being provided with the sketches in order to get the top leadership of the naxals and also to sharpen intelligence based operations," a senior security officer said.
The directives to take up intelligence-based operations have been issued from Home ministry and the headquarters of para-military forces. Once the security teams have the photographs they can also take the help of locals to track the movements of naxal leaders, the officer said.
The photographs are being provided to all officers in the rank of company commanders and commanding officers of battalions deployed in naxal areas.
According to sources, the security forces are also taking the help of locals favourable to the administration to prepare the sketches of the naxal leaders.
Almost 60,000 personnel of central security forces apart from state police teams are undertaking operations in the Left Wing Extremism hit areas of the country.