'Govt taking steps to check Maoists in Northeast'



New Delhi: Terming the Maoist issue a "threat" to the country, the government on Wednesday said all steps are being taken to check the activities of the ultras, who are trying to spread their influence in the North-eastern states.

"Maoist issue is a threat and we are working on it. We are aware of its spread in the Northeast and we are taking all steps to contain it," Union Minister of State for Defence M M Pallam Raju said here.

He was asked about the reports of Maoists reaching in the North-eastern states to spread their influence.

The minister said the forces inimical to India were encouraging these elements but the government was taking steps to check such activities in the initial stages itself.

In the recent past, reports have suggested that Maoists have tried to get in touch with extremist groups, such as the ULFA in Assam and similar organisations in Arunachal Pradesh.

Maoists have been carrying out a string of attacks against civilians and security forces in the past and have been termed as the 'gravest internal security threat faced by the nation' by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

PTI