New Delhi: While the government views Maoist violence as the single largest threat to internal security, a study focused on 36 Maoist-affected districts reveals that a majority of the population there side with the government.
A study done by the Centre for Study of Developing Societies in collaboration with a news channel reveals that while 49 percent of the population in the Maoist-affected areas side with the government, those supporting the Left-wing rebels are only five percent, while 34 percent are neutral.
The study covered 36 Maoist-affected districts in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Orissa and West Bengal based on the list of districts identified by the Planning Commission.
Asked about their perception of security, while 50 percent respondents felt "very safe", 34 percent felt "somewhat unsafe" and only 10 percent felt "very unsafe".
On the issue of Maoists controlling these districts, 49 percent said that the government has full control of the area while a meagre two percent found Maoists to have control.
However, 10 percent respondents accepted being Maoist sympathisers while a majority of 37 percent accepted they had "mild" sympathy for the red rebels.
On the reason underlying Maoism, a majority 55 percent had no opinion while 32 percent blamed lack of development and 13 percent blamed inequality for it.