In the aftermath of the Naxal attack on Congress leaders in Chhattisgarh last month, the Centre is preparing an all-out war against the Maoist menace by strengthening its two-pronged strategy to deal with the Naxals.
Buoyed by the support of all the political parties at a special meeting convened on Monday, Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said the UPA Government is mulling strict action to deal with the Left-wing insurgency. “All parties have asked us to take the strictest (possible) action,” Shinde said.
Although, the Home Minister refused to comment on whether the Centre would seek the Army’s help to flush out the ultras, he minced no words saying that the rebels were systematically destroying development infrastructure and there was no option but to reclaim the Naxal-infested areas for development.
The all-party meet came out with strong suggestions, including passing a resolution against Naxalism, which urged the states and the Centre to use all legitimate means to defend the country’s security and stop the armed insurgency.
The meeting chaired by PM Manmohan Singh condemned the killing of political leaders and workers, adding that it was an attack on democracy, freedom, and free speech and expression.
While discussing ways to tackle the Maoist problem, all the parties agreed to the Centre’s two-pronged strategy of sustaining security operations to clear the areas of Maoist influence and pursue the objectives of effective governance and rapid development. Sources said there was a consensus on intelligence-based security operations to strike at the vitals of the Naxal movement.
The meeting, which was also attended by Union Defence Minister A K Antony, Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik, BSP chief Mayawati, SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav, BJP leader Sushma Swaraj, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, CPI leader Gurudas Dasgupta and NC leader Farooq Abdullah, appealed to the youth in the affected states to pursue their goals through democratic means.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting Mayawati pointed out that state governments and the Centre had to first understand the reason behind the existence of Naxalism and then find the solution.
Manmohan said the Chhattisgarh attack marked the first time that the rebels had targeted the top leadership of a political party in a systematic manner.
Meanwhile the Congress in Chhattisgarh will resume its ‘Parivartan Yatra’ on June 16 from Keslur village near Jiram Ghati, the spot where its convoy was ambushed.