Government is willing to hold talks with Naxals on any issue if they abjured violence, Home Minister P Chidambaram told Rajya Sabha today.

Replying to supplementaries during Question Hour, he said there was no evidence to indicate that Maoists were getting any assistance from across the border.

“If Naxals abjure violence, we are willing to hold talks to them on any matter of concern - development, governance," he said.

Some groups have offered to mediate but so far there has been no offer of talks, he said.

State governments have from time to time appealed to Left Wing Extremists to abjure violence and holds talks. “As far as the Central Government is concerned, it will welcome such talks provided Left Wing Extremists abjure violence and give up their so-called armed struggle,” he said. Asked about statements by certain central ministers that there were no Maoists in West Bengal, the Home Minister said he cannot react to statements attributed to ministers that are published in newspapers.

“In heat of political debate in West Bengal, a number of statements have been made by political parties and leaders. You will not ask me to comment on wisdom of one statement or the other,” he said.

Minister of State for Home Ajay Maken said the Government had adopted a focused area approach to deal with the developmental issues in 34 Naxal-affected districts in eight states.

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