Alarmed over growing threats from Left Wing Extremism (LWE), the Union government is preparing a new surrender policy where Maoists would be given enhanced compensation and financial support for their rehabilitation.

To be operational from April this year, under the new surrender policy, a ‘senior’ Maoist will receive an aid of Rs.2.5 lakh as one-time surrender payment and a monthly stipend of Rs. 3,000 for three years that would help support his self-employment efforts. Similarly, a ‘junior’ Maoist will get a compensation of Rs.1.5 lakh. For surrender of weapons, the government has decided on compensation ranging from Rs. 5,000 to Rs. 30,000, depending upon the size and sophistication of the weapon.

This was decided on Monday at the meeting of Chief Secretaries and Directors General of Police (DGPs) of nine LWE-affected States convened by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). The funds for the scheme would come from the Centre’s ‘security related expenditure’ (SRE) scheme.

Stating that Naxal-hit States could decide on compensation over and above the new scheme, a senior MHA official said a committee headed by an Inspector General (IG) of State police would formulate the modalities for the scheme.

Higher grant for community policing

Similarly, the MHA has decided to hike the grant envisaged under the community policing scheme from Rs. 5 lakh to Rs.10 lakh to conduct community programmes and sporting tournaments to bring youths to the mainstream of society.

In another major decision, the proposal to install 2,200 mobile towers at a cost of Rs. 3,000 crore in nine LWE-hit States has been cleared. The work will begin this month and become fully operational by year-end. Installation of mobile towers in remote locations would help security forces to deal with Maoists more effectively, the official added.

The Centre has also decided to construct eight bridges in these States to ensure better connectivity for transport of men and material to various locations. The meeting also discussed replicating successful development models being implemented in various States for ushering in development works in Naxal-affected areas cleared by security forces. One such example is the development of the villages in Saranda forests area of Jharkhand.