RAIPUR: It’s rare to see Raj Bhawans open up to people but in Chhattisgarh, it has. So much so that, even surrendered Maoist cadres in the worst-affected areas of the state want an interaction, especially after Governor Anusuiya Uikey said she would like to see them integrated with the mainstream.
The Governor’s initiatives at ‘people-connect’ and ‘people-centric’ exercises, are being now popularly cited, helping change the perception and break the stereotype of the Raj Bhawan being just a ‘symbol of power’ and at best of times, and ‘unapproachable’.
This is the first time that Chhattisgarh has a tribal Governor with politically rich experience in the state.
“She is interested in areas of governance and welfare related to the Fifth Scheduled Area. She even visited disturbed areas of Dantewada, Narayanpur and Bastar,” said Sonmoni Borah, principal secretary to the Governor.
“The Governor met 126 Maoists who had surrendered during the last seven years in Dantewada. She was forthright in discussing with them issues related to the outlawed CPI (Maoist) and their immediate concerns. She discussed the surrender and rehabilitation policy that can be implemented much more effectively to encourage other armed rebels to lay down their arms,” Abhishek Pallava, the Dantewada superintendent of police said.
Her interaction with surrendered rebels resulted in many them joining the Dantewada police force as Danteshwari Fighters (women commandos) to take on Left Wing Extremism. Uikey also promised the surrendered Maoists that she will take up their cause with the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) and secure the necessary support for them.
Focus on tribals
In a short span of three months after taking an oath as Governor on July 29, Uikey pro-actively engaged with several key issues related to the lives of the inhabitants of Chhattisgarh, particularly tribals.