Extending all support to the Union government in its crackdown against Naxals, national president of the Bharatiya Janata Party Nitin Gadkari said the situation has reached a stage where there was no point in having talks with Maoists.

“They cannot expect the government to hold talks when they indulge in violence. They have taken the law into their hands. Talks can be held only after they stop violence and normalcy is established in the Naxal-affected areas,” he said. The BJP would support the government in its fight against Maoists, he added.

River linking

Stressing the need for interlinking of all rivers, Mr. Gadkari said if the party forms the next government at the Centre, the first priority would be to link rivers. “It is a very peculiar situation that when one part of the country is facing drought another part is affected by floods. Linking of rivers will be the only solution to the problem,” he said.

Interlinking of rivers would reduce regional imbalances and help increase agriculture activity, production and power generation. The Gujarat government was “successful” in linking 21 rivers and it helped in increasing agriculture production by 40 per cent and ground water re-charge by 20 per cent. When the National Democratic Alliance was in power, an attempt was made to interlink all rivers, but it could not make progress as irrigation comes under the State list.

The United Progressive Alliance government should take steps to bring irrigation under the concurrent list, Mr. Gadkari said. The States and the Centre can share the financial burden of implementing the project.

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