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Disbanding Salwa Judum will hit anti-Naxal ops: PC

The Supreme Court ruling on disbanding of Salwa Judum will impact on the anti-Naxal operations, says govt.



New Delhi: The Supreme Court judgement on
disbanding of Salwa Judum will impact on the anti-Naxal operations, says the Centre which is planning to call a meeting of Chief Ministers of Orissa and Jharkhand after Chhattisgarh`s action on a new law on the issue.

Home Minister P Chidambaram also says that there are
reports that CPI (Maoist) and the PCPA may be re-grouping in
the Jangalmahal area of West Bengal which has been asked to be
on alert.

"Well, I think it will," he said when he was asked
whether the recent Supreme Court judgement on disbanding and
disarming tribals deployed as Special Police Officers (SPOs)
will affect the anti-Naxal operations.

"At least Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh (Raman Singh) strongly feels that this judgement will impact anti-Naxal operations," Chidambaram said.
The Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh proposes to take
some steps in the next couple of days including making a new
law to govern SPOs, he said.

"I told him that I will await his (Singh) action
because he is the principal respondent in the case. I will
wait to see what Chhattisgarh does before I call the Chief
Ministers of Orissa and Jharkhand," he said.

The Minister said SPOs were engaged in one manner or
the other in anti-Naxal operations in Chhattisgarh and in
Orissa. The Supreme Court judgement applied only to engaging
them in anti-Naxal operations in Chhattisgarh, Orissa and
Jharkhand.

Asked whether Maoists were re-grouping in Naxal-hit
areas of West Bengal, Chidambaram said, "There are reports
that the CPI (Maoist) and the PCPA may be re-grouping in
Jangalmahal area. We have shared these reports with the West
Bengal government and (have) asked them to be on alert."

To a question whether West Bengal Chief Minister
Mamata Banerjee was soft towards Maoists, Chidambaram said
there was no basis for him to agree with such an assumption.

"There is no basis at all that the Maoists supported
Trinamool Congress. I do not have any basis to come to that
conclusion."
To a question whether West Bengal government has
sought additional Central paramilitary forces, he said, "They
have requested that the forces deployed in three districts of
West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia must remain in West Bengal
which we have agreed for the time being.

"They have also told us that they intend to release
fifty or so people who have been arrested. They told us that
also," he said.

PTI

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