Aerial mapping, development schemes for Naxal areas

New Delhi, Aug 30 | Updated: Aug 31 2006, 05:30am hrs
Besides extending full support to the controversial Salva Judum programme, the Centre on Wednesday decided to facilitate aerial surveillance, improve intelligence gathering and strengthen the Naxal desk in the home ministry as part of measures to effectively tackle the growing Naxal menace affecting 13 states in the country. Addressing media persons here, union home secretary VK Duggal, however, also asserted that the government approach would also focus on trying to bring back Naxals into the mainstream by actively pursuing various developmental schemes in affected states.

The union home secretary also said that the Centre would continue to support the Salva Judum programme initiated primarily in Chattisgarh by Congress leader of Opposition Mahendra Karma, which attempts to enroll tribals to counter the Naxalites.

Wednesdays meeting, part of a quarterly interaction to review coordination and enhance intelligence and networking between Centre and affected states, was attended by the Union home secretary, chief secretaries and the DGPs of affected states including Chattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand and Orissa.

Security of jails and armouries and strict enforcement of laws to curb Naxal violence were some other issues discussed.