Asserting that the country will never bow down before Naxalism, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday said government will pursue the perpetrators of the crime with urgency and is committed to bringing them to justice.
The Prime Minister also announced Rs 5 lakh each as ex-gratia relief from the National Relief Fund for families of those killed and Rs 50,000 each for those injured in the deadly Naxal attack in Sukma district on Saturday that left 27 people dead.
“Our leaders, Nandkumar Patel, Mahendra Karma, Uday Mudaliyar have sacrificed their lives. However, our country will never bow down before Naxalism,” Mr. Singh said while addressing party workers at Congress Bhavan here.
27 people, including Chhattisgarh Congress chief Nandkumar Patel and his son Dinesh, senior leader Mahendra Karma, ex-MLA Uday Mudliyar, were killed and 32 others injured in the Maoist ambush in the forested area.
The Prime Minister said, “We will pursue the perpetrators of this crime with urgency and I can assure the nation that the Government is committed to bringing them to justice. Those who commit such dastardly crimes are working against the interests of peace and development in the area”, he said.
“Congress has a history of sacrifices made by its leaders. We have faced challenges. This attack is a challenge for us but we have to move forward”, Mr. Singh said.
Earlier, Mr. Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi visited the hospital where leaders injured in yesterday’s attack on the Congress convoy in Sukma district are admitted.
The Prime Minister also said that the attack should inspire a fight against forces of extremism.
Extending his heartfelt condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives in yesterday’s incident of violence in Chhatisgarh, Mr. Singh asked the State administration to provide the best medical treatment to the injured.
The Prime Minister also reviewed the security situation in Chhatisgarh with the Chief Minister of the State and officials of the State government and offered all possible help to the State in dealing with the situation.
Meanwhile, the visit of Mr. Singh and Ms. Gandhi to Jagdalpur has been cancelled due to security reasons, Congress sources said.
They were to visit some of the injured admitted in hospital at Jagdalpur.
Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, Union Minister Charan Das Mahant, Rajya Sabha MPs Motilal Vora, Mohsina Kidwai and other senior party leaders were also present at Congress Bhavan.