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Updated: November 27, 2009 18:52 IST

Chidambaram asks anti-Naxal forces to ensure tribals' safety

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This file photo shows tribals fleeing from their homes after authorities sent hundreds of soldiers to reclaim a large area captured by the Maoists at Bhattpur in West Bengal on June 21, 2009.
AP
This file photo shows tribals fleeing from their homes after authorities sent hundreds of soldiers to reclaim a large area captured by the Maoists at Bhattpur in West Bengal on June 21, 2009.

With security forces preparing to launch a multi-State coordinated offensive against Naxals, Home Minister P. Chidambaram on Friday said they need to ensure that the poor and tribals do not suffer in the fight against Maoist violence.

“While you should be firm, decisive and unrelenting in dealing with those who indulge in violence, you should show a great degree of sensitivity, patience and maturity to the poor people, especially the tribals,” Mr. Chidambaram said.

He was speaking at the 70th Raising Day celebrations of the Central Reserve Police Force that would be at the forefront of the anti-Naxal operation.

Noting that the people of the country have the constitutional right to choose their leaders, he said, “As custodians of the constitution we have moral, ethical and legal responsibility to ensure that the writ of the constitution runs through the length and breadth of the country.”

“The biggest challenge before you (CRPF personnel) is how well and successful you are able to reach out to the tribal and the poor people and the marginalised,” the Minister said, adding the forces have to convince such people of their rights as a legitimate citizen of the country.

Mr. Chidambaram said that under a special scheme, the government has sanctioned building of 8,826 quarters under the separated family accommodation at existing CRPF locations for personnel who stay away from their families for long duration.

CRPF Director General A S Gill, who was also present at the function, said training programme of the forces has been made more practical and field specific.

He said more powers should be delegated to Special DGs of the force for better coordination and performance output.

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