Weaning them away from Maoist ‘trap’

Police train tribal youth of Visakhapatnam Agency in a series of livelihood skills

August 10, 2018 01:01 am | Updated 01:01 am IST - VISAKHAPATNAM

A file photo of tribal youth being trained for the recruitment tests for Central paramilitary forces at a camp organised by Visakhapatnam District Police at Paderu.

A file photo of tribal youth being trained for the recruitment tests for Central paramilitary forces at a camp organised by Visakhapatnam District Police at Paderu.

If economic development is the key to root out the left-wing extremism, then the District Police appear to be on the right track.

At a time when the banned CPI (Maoists) are trying hard to motivate tribal youth to join the group, the police are coming up with innovative skill development programmes to train the girijans to ensure the latter’s sustainable development.

A few weeks ago, a driving training programme was launched and in the first batch, around 300 tribal youth from remote villages were trained for a month in handling auto-rickshaws and four-wheelers.

“Today, they are trained drivers with valid licences,” said Superintendent of Police Rahul Dev Sharma.

As per a report prepared by the Road Transport Authority (RTA), about 80% of the drivers in the Agency areas do not have licence and are not trained drivers.

Hands-on experience

“We want to break the jinx, by imparting training and issue licences, so that the tribal youth can earn their livelihood in the plain areas,” said the SP.

This apart, the police also have started a mechanic training programme. In the first batch, around 50 youth from interior and mandals affected by left-wing extremism such as Pedabayalu, G. Madugula and G.K. Veedhi, underwent one-month training.

“The trained youth were given a kit worth ₹15,000, so that they can set-up their own shop or work in a showroom. Further, the tribal youth also did internships at reputed dealers for hands-on experience,” explained Mr. Rahul Dev Sharma.

“The number of bikes, auto-rickshaws and four-wheelers in the Agency areas have increased manifold in the last one decade and mechanics are less in population,” said Ramana, a youth from the Visakhapatnam Agency who attended the training sessions organised by the police said.

Moreover, most of the girijans in the Agency like to live close to their villages and the training is a good option for sustainable living, he said.

Referring to the training, he said “The sessions are unique, as apart from learning, teh candidates underwent yoga classes and motivational talk sessions too.”

Pilot projects

For the women, the police have organised a 45-day nursing training and about 40 young tribal girls were trained and 250 youth were trained as security guards.

“The security guard training was a comprehensive one and they were taught to handle baggage scanners at airports and all of them will be placed,” said the SP.

All the training programmes were organised by the police, in collaboration with the GMR Training Academy at Rajam.

“These are many pilot projects too and we want to extend those to every village in all Agency mandals. The idea is to ensure that at least one person from every house is trained in some skill, so that they can make a living. We are also exploring the hotel management option,” added the SP.

Training for

CRPF posts soon

Based on a call given by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs to fill up 55,000 posts in the CRPF, the District Police is planning to train the youth from Visakhapatnam Agency to take a shot at the recruitment drives.

Of the 55,000 posts available, at least 8,000 will be reserved for SCs and another 4,000 for STs.

“We are working out a model to conduct a comprehensive training programme, covering both academic and physical endurance,” said Mr. Rahul Dev Sharma.

Last time, the district police had trained around 120 youth ffrom the tribal belt for the post of constables in the State Police Department and around 20 were selected during the recruitment drive.

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