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Ministry of Home Affairs to Jharkhand- pull up shocks

Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil is expecting to meet Jharkhand CM Madhu Koda later this week, reports Aloke Tikku.

india Updated: Dec 06, 2006 03:02 IST

The Union home ministry is peeved at Jharkhand handling of left-wing extremism and has indicated that the state should first make the best of allocated resources before coming up with a new wish-list.

Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil is expected to meet Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda later this week and impress upon Koda on the need to get implementation of its anti-naxal action-plan off the ground.

Fourteen policemen attached with a specialist anti-naxal unit were killed in Bokaro district last week when their vehicle passed over a landmine. Patil had then sent a central team for an on-the-spot assessment of the situation and review the naxal situation in the state. The central team returned on Tuesday, unimpressed.

Not only because 14 lives were lost because the security personnel probably did not stick to the standard operating procedures on counter-insurgency duties. They were returning from the same route used earlier in the day; "they drove the vehicle right over a non-concrete patch" on the road when they should have stopped the vehicle.

The central team has also taken serious note of the state's failure to utilise resources under the police modernisation scheme, raising sanctioned India Reserve battalions or implementation of the action plan drafted at the centre's insistence.

Home ministry officials have also hinted concern at the performance of intelligence gathering machinery in the state even at a time when the naxals are determinedly consolidating and inflicting damage on security personnel. At least 42 policemen have had been killed by naxalites in Jharkhand this year; up from 27 in 2005 and 41 in 2004.

Five battalions of central reserve police force are already deployed in the state for anti-naxal operations in the state. In the absence of a detailed plan that would enable the forces to zero-in on the naxal hotspots and execute precision operations, there is a feeling that the state may not be utilising them to their potential.

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First Published: Dec 06, 2006 03:02 IST