The West Bengal Cabinet approved on Wednesday a decision to set up a special directorate to oversee security and implement measures against terror.

The directorate, which would work under the Home department, will be headed by a deputy inspector general of police. It would engage more than 480 police personnel. It would also oversee security arrangements for VIPs and VVIPs.

It was also decided to increase the strength of police personnel and improve the infrastructure in the thanas affected by Maoist activities in the three south-western districts, Finance Minister Asim Dasgupta said.

It was decided that 3,224 new posts would be created in various departments, including Home and Health. Another 150 posts lying vacant would be filled up, Mr. Dasgupta said.

Nearly 1,200 personnel would be added to the existing forces in 21 thanas in the districts of Paschim Medinipur, Bankura and Purulia. They would be provided with more vehicles.

Increased killings

The decisions come at a time when people are being killed every day; most of the incidents occurring in and around Lalgarh, where a joint security operation by the paramilitary forces and police was on since June 18.

Earlier this week, Chief Minister, Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee expressed concern in the Assembly over the growing incidence of Maoist activity in the south-western districts.

They had declared a war against the nation and were being assisted by the Trinamool Congress, he alleged. Policemen were among those murdered by ultras, pointed out.

A decision was taken by the State government to arm policemen deployed in the trouble-hit areas with more sophisticated weaponry and pay them additional allowance given the risks involved while on being duty there.