Operation Green Hunt is unlikely to start immediately in Orissa. Around 700 security personnel were withdrawn from the state in January, much against the state government’s wishes.
It has now sought around 7,000 Central Reserve Police jawans from the Centre, but there has been no official word on the request.
Sanjeev Marik, IG (operations), however says the state has “enough forces to tackle the Maoists”. The state government has created a Special Operations Group (SOG) exclusively for anti-Naxal operations. Recently, the strength of the SOG has been increased by about 1,000.
Besides, there is also the Orissa Special Striking Force that has on its rolls former servicemen.
But the state government’s anti-Naxal operations, say villagers, lack a human face. There are repeated charges of harassment by the police and paramilitary forces.
The arrest of 30 “innocent” villagers in Sundergarh district in August kicked off a row with the villagers blocking roads and demanding an enquiry into police excess.