Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Naxalism growing, says Opposition in Orissa. Banning of Maoist outfits

Naxalism growing, says Opposition in Orissa.Banning of Maoist outfits
has backfired

Tuesday November 14 2006 11:43 IST

BHUBANESWAR: The winter session of the Assembly got off to a stormy start on Monday with the Opposition members disrupting the question hour criticising the State Government for failing to tackle the growing Maoist activities in Orissa.

The issue cropped up when Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik was replying to a question from Sitakant Mohapatra (Congress) on the increasing Naxalite activities. Speaker Maheswar Mohanty had to adjourn the House for an hour as the Opposition members perched themselves in the well raising slogans.

When the situation did not improve, the House was adjourned for lunch.

Not satisfied with the Chief Minister’s answer, Deputy Leader of Congress Narasingh Mishra wanted to know the reasons for growing activities of the Left-wing extremists. The Naxalites gained more teeth after the State Government banned the CPI (Maoist) and its six outfits, Mishra said and demanded a reply from the Chief Minister.

Naveen said the State Government was following a two-pronged strategy to tackle the problem. Besides strong police action, the State Government has also initiated several steps for the socio-economic development of Naxalite-affected areas, he said and added that the impact of Left-wing extremism in Orissa is much less than in neighbouring States of Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand.

Stating that 33 civilians and 36 police personnel have lost their lives since 2000 in Naxalite violence in Orissa, Naveen said the State Government had taken several pro-active measures on the security and development fronts to contain their activities.

But the extremist activities in Orissa cannot be treated in isolation as it is a national problem posing a challenge to the internal security of the entire country, he added.

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