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IS threat: Maharashtra rolls out deradicalisation plan

Faced with the challenges of both home-grown extremism and the global Islamic State (IS) threat, Maharashtra has rolled out a deradicalisation programme for the minority community.

The programme includes opening vyayam shalas in minority areas, making National Cadet Corps (NCC), Bharat Scouts and Guides (BS&G) compulsory in minority schools, and setting up an independent media outlet to deliver ‘mainstream thoughts and values’ to the minority youth in the State.

The Union Home Ministry had asked three States to draw up a comprehensive counter-strategy in the wake of attempts by international terrorist outfits to propagate jihadi ideologies.

Presentation in Delhi

A three-member team of the State’s Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) led by Director General of Police (DGP) Pravin Dixit had presented an IS counter-strategy at New Delhi in the second week of January.

Concurrently, the State Home Department has rolled out a 50-point socio-economic strategy with the aim of ‘bringing youth of the minority community into the mainstream’ and making coordinated efforts and policies in 13 sectors, including education, sports, urban planning, law and order, skill development, women and child, social justice, and health.

Government resolution

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has approved the proposal and passed a government resolution on it. The proposed responses drawn up against the threat of home-grown extremism include: plans to teach religious texts from all sects in minority schools and teaching merits of democratic States and demerits of dictatorships as a separate chapter in the Urdu textbooks.

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