Mumbai: The Naxal-affected Gadchiroli
district would have a `tribal battalion` to tackle the ultras,
Maharashtra Home Minister RR Patil said on Friday.
"The recruitment will be done by State Reserve Police
Force (SRPF)," he said, adding that locals would get priority.
Patil was speaking in the Legislative Council during a
debate on recent Naxal attack in Gadchiroli in which 12 CRPF
men were killed. He reiterated government`s stand that the
controversial National Counter Terrorism Centre was needed.
"If the state government has to part with some of its powers
to tackle the menace of terrorism and Naxalism, it won`t
matter. Maharashtra will support the NCTC," he said.
Patil, an NCP minister, also said that state police were
coordinating well with the CRPF.
Though the Naxals had some presence in Nanded, Yavatmal,
Bhandara and Gondia districts, they could not carry out their
activities in these areas much as they were being flushed out,
Around five thousand CRPF personnel are deployed in
Very few members of the Council were present during
Patil`s reply. Education Minister Rajendra Darda was the only
minister to be present. None of the senior legislators,
including the Opposition Leader Vinod Tawade (BJP), were
The Tuesday`s Naxal attack was the biggest in Maharashtra
in the last three years, Patil said. In the last five years,
there were 519 Naxal attacks in the state, in which 239
persons including policemen lost lives.