'CRPF will launch fresh operations against Naxals in Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand' - The New Indian Express

'CRPF will launch fresh operations against Naxals in Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand'

Published: 30th May 2013 08:49 PM

Last Updated: 30th May 2013 09:00 PM

CRPF will launch fresh onslaught against Naxalites in the hotbeds of Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand for which fresh troops are being inducted, the force chief said here today.

Country's mainstay for anti-Naxal operations, the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) has deployed almost 84,000 personnel (85 battalions) for the task in the jungles and difficult areas of the nine Left Wing Extremism-hit areas.

"Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand are the thrust areas for us.

We have already begun coordinated anti-Naxal operations in the border areas of Chhattisgarh after the recent incident in the state where top state politicians were killed," CRPF chief Pranay Sahay told PTI a day after he returned from the ambush spot in Darbha valley.

Sahay, who undertook an operational assessment of the forces deployed in south Bastar area yesterday, said the paramilitary force has put its best men on the job to track the "retreating steps" of the Maoists who carried out the deadly attack last week killing 27 people including state PCC chief Nand Kumar Patel and another prominent leader Mahendra Karma.

"The special operations group, the Greyhounds of Andhra Pradesh, BSF, state police and CRPF have begun the task and we are constantly monitoring it with the help of technical gadgets like unmanned aerial vehicles," the DG said.

Sahay said two fresh battalions of the force will shortly be inducted into the Sukma district of the state and the borders which is on the southernmost tip of Bastar.

"The boys are finishing acclimatisation of the area and will be placed at their locations soon, well before monsoon," he said.

The current operations, Sahay said, are concentrated primarily in three areas - Chhattisgarh-Odisha border, Chhattisgarh-Andhra border and certain notorious locations in Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand where Maoist cadres venture.

The BSF, according to sources, has already sent its Additional Director General rank officer to camp in Odisha's Koraput to coordinate these operations.

The CRPF has drawn its men from the elite CoBRA anti-Naxal operations unit and other regular battalions deployed in these states.

Sahay, during the interaction, said two CRPF units located near the Darbha valley were deployed for road sensitisation duties up to 5 km on the instructions of the state police.

"We are there in the area (Darbha valley and Sukma) and whenever our boys are sought for security duties they are deployed by our local commanders," he said.

He refused to comment on any possible security lapse that could have led to last week's incident which eliminated the top leadership of Congress party in the state.

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