Ahead of an all out coordinated offensive against Naxals, Central security forces are trying to fortify Orissa to plug the escape routes of the Maoists.

Over 60,000 Central security personnel along with various State police personnel have taken up positions in Naxal-hit areas and efforts are on to cut out escape routes, security sources said on Monday.

Maoist-hit Orissa shares borders with four left-wing extremism hit states - Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh.

“There are chances that Maoists who might face pressure in one state during the operation will move to another using Orissa as a bridge. The stress is to fortify Orissa first so that the escapes routes can be plugged,” a senior official of the Task Force against Naxal said.

The sources said the Centre has now moved about 5,000 securitymen to Orissa, over and above the about 11,000 personnel already stationed, to fortify the borders.

While stand alone operations have already been initiated in certain states, sources said the multi-state coordinated offensive under the guidance of central forces would begin once the final modalities are completed.

Home Minister P. Chidamabarm has called a meeting in Kolkata on February 9 of Chief Ministers of four States - West Bengal, Orissa, Jharkhand and Bihar - to fine tune the multi-state anti-Naxal operation.