Agnivesh urges PM to hold peace talks with Naxals

Last Updated: Monday, July 1, 2013 - 19:48

Nagpur: Social activist Swami Agnivesh today urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to initiate dialogue with Maoists to end the decades-long Left-wing violence in the country.

"Prime Minister Manmohan Singh should initiate the peace process himself. He should not depend on the Union Home Minister (P Chidambaram) as people have lost faith in the Home Ministry in this regard in view of the past experience," Agnivesh said.

"The Prime Minister alone can resolve the problem through genuine talks with the Naxalites," he added.

He alleged that CPI (Maoist) spokesman and politburo member Cherukuri Rajkumar alias Azad was killed in a "fake encounter" in Nagpur on July 1, 2010 and the CBI probe into the case had been "manipulated".

"Andhra Pradesh police`s claims that the senior Naxal leader was killed in an encounter near Sarkapalli in Adilabad district (Andhra Pradesh), along with a journalist, Hem Chandra Pandey, is a total lie as they were picked up from Nagpur and killed in a cold-blooded manner here itself," he said.

Azad was close to Maoist general secretary Pupalla Laxmanrao alias Ganapathi and regarded by many as the second- in-command.

"I was offered to be an interlocutor for talks between the Centre and the Maoists by Union Home Minister P Chidambaram. Azad was the link between me and the leadership of the Naxalites of CPI (Maoist).

"However, a section of state powers, including AP police did not want the peace process and the Maoist leader was killed in fake encounter to scuttle the move," he alleged.
"I was in touch with Azad. His death was a setback to the entire talk and peace process. Had he not died, it could have brought a positive outcome in the Left-extremist movement in the country. It was a betrayal of peace process," he said.
According to Agnivesh, he had earlier met the Prime Minister demanding judicial probe into the incident. "He had accepted my demand then, but the government backed out later," Agnivesh said. "The CBI probe that had given a clean chit to AP police was completely manipulated and hence we once again demand a judicial probe into the incident," he added.

PTI



First Published: Monday, July 1, 2013 - 19:48

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