Using Army against Maoists not desirable: Army chief

Indian Army chief General VK Singh has said it "was not desirable" to use the armed forces in anti-Maoist operations as the Left-wing rebellion is being viewed "as a law and order and socio-economic problem".

New Delhi: Indian Army chief General VK Singh has said it "was not desirable" to use the armed forces in anti-Maoist operations as the Left-wing rebellion is being viewed "as a law and order and socio-economic problem".

"We have held this as a belief, which even the Defence Minister (AK Antony) gave out, that the Left-wing extremism or the Maoist problem is more of a law and order and socio-economic problem to be handled by the local police forces and the central police forces. Army`s moving into this was not desirable," Singh told All India Radio in an interview.

General Singh said the Army was providing assistance in training the police forces, the central police forces and the paramilitary forces.

He said the Army has offered names of people who can be advisors with the various states and guide them on how things can be done.

"Retired officers basically and as I look at it, I think the whole situation can be tackled by these forces very well. However, in the long term, if something happens and if the government wants the army, well, we will accordingly gear ourselves for that particular task," he said.

IANS