The State Government is likely to receive Rs 112 crore more from the Centre for fortification of 70 more police stations in the Maoist-affected areas of the State.
The programme for fortification of police stations is underway in the State under which the Ministry of Home Affairs is funding 80 per cent of the `2 crore each for a PS and 20 per cent is contributed by the State Government. This programme was launched to set up 400 fortified police stations in Left Wing Extremism (LWE)-affected States of the country. With growing concern over Maoists acquiring modern weapons and consolidating their presence in certain pockets, particularly in Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal, the State governments have been asked to complete all civil works at these police stations at the earliest.
It was over two years back that the Cabinet Committee on Security gave the green signal to the project. Subsequently, the MHA identified police stations in 83 worst Naxal-hit districts spread across nine states __ Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. It was decided that Rs 2 crore would be spent on each of these stations, with the MHA providing ` 1.6 crore and the State governments contributing Rs 40 lakh.
Anil Goswami, the then officer on special duty (OSD) in MHA, who visited Odisha last week, reviewed the implementation of the project in the State at a high level meeting here. Earlier, State Government had received Rs 112 crore for fortification of 70 PSs and the MHA is learnt to have expressed satisfaction over the progress. The issue has been taken up for discussion in the Assembly several times with the State Government announcing that all police stations and armouries in the State would be fortified under the fortification scheme. Official sources said that already 98 police stations and 20 armouries had been covered under fortification scheme and fortification of the rest would be completed soon.