Taking the fight against left-wing extremism to a new frontier, the Union Home Ministry has sought to actively involve the print media directly by issuing advertisements depicting “cold-blooded killings” of innocent citizens by naxalites.
The first in a series of advertisements appeared in all national dailies on Sunday which carried seven photographs of innocent women, men and children who were brutally killed by naxals over the past three years.
In a bid to silence criticism regarding the authenticity and credibility of these photographs, all the victims have been identified and their villages and dates of killings have also been mentioned. The advertisements carry the tagline “Naxals are nothing, but cold-blooded murderers.”
“These ads are an attempt to show to the newspaper readers who are more aware than others that naxals are not wedded to any lofty ideology but carry out such killings in a routine manner to instil fear among people and terrorise them,” Home Ministry spokesperson Onkar Kedia said on Sunday.
Shift in stand
The ads also mark a departure from the government’s stand that naxals were “misguided elements” who needed to be lured back into national mainstream.
The ads were issued after Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram had a series of discussions with senior officials of his Ministry on thrashing out a new “media policy” to deal with the gravest danger to internal security.
More to come
“More such advertisements will be issued in all regional newspapers in the days to come. Senior officials of the Home Ministry have also previewed 25-minute-long films made on naxalism and tribals and as part of the new strategy, these will be exhibited by the national network of Doordarshan and other electronic media,” the spokesperson said.