OTHERS

Govt. blamed for rise in naxalite activity

BANGALORE, MARCH 17. Many members in the Legislative Council blamed the Government for the increasing naxalite activities in and around Pavagada taluk.

They also demanded that the Chief Minister, N. Dharam Singh, pay a visit to Venkatamanahalli where the naxalites killed seven police personnel and a civilian in retaliation to the death of two of their "comrades" in an encounter in Chikmagalur district.

Resuming the discussion in the Legislative Council on Wednesday on the naxalite menace, V.S. Ugrappa of the Congress and M.P. Nadagouda of Janata Dal (United) told the House that poverty and unemployment, an ill-equipped police force and the haphazard security arrangements in Pavagada taluk have provided an ideal alternate hideout for naxalites who have been active in Andhra Pradesh.

The Venkatamannahalli tragedy would not have taken place had the Government implemented its programmes and posted a battalion of the Karnataka State Reserved Police in Pavagada.

The Government failed to extend incentives such as risk allowance and special compulsory leave for the police personnel posted at Venkatamanahalli.

It recently posted 10 untrained policemen at the sensitive Tirumani village near Venkatamanahalli, they said.

The naxalite problem in Pavagada taluk will get solved automatically if the local problems are tackled, they said.

The Leader of the House, M. Mallikarjun Kharge, and the Minister for Sericulture, C. Chennigappa, said the Chief Minister did not visit Venkatamanahalli because of security reasons.

Mr. Kharge said the Government will provide compensation to a civilian who was killed along with the police personnel at Venkatammanahalli.

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