Sunday, February 18, 2007

Orissa State seeks more funds to contain ultras

State seeks more funds to contain ultras
Sunday February 18 2007 10:02 IST

BHUBANESWAR: The State Government has decided to seek more financial assistance from the Centre to tackle the problem of growing Left-wing extremism in Orissa.

Among others things, the State Government would raise the issue of Central funding for Vijayawada-Ranchi highway which would go a long way in containing the Maoists activities. The highway would pass through 12 tribal dominated districts.

The Government has made an estimate of Rs 184 crore for the road project during the 2006-07. Besides, the demands include more funds for training of security personnel and modernisation of the police force. The Government has already sought two more platoons of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) following increased Naxalite violence during the recent months. Besides, the State Government would also ask for inclusion of two more districts in security related expenditure (SRE).

These issues would be raised by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik at the first meeting of the empowered group of Ministers (E-GoM) on naxalism, headed by Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil, in New Delhi on February 19.

Among others, the meeting is likely to be attended by Finance Minister P Chidambaram, Law Minister H R Bhardwaj and other Union Ministers, besides Chief Ministers of over half a dozen affected states including Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Chhattisgarh.

The meeting will discuss all issue relating to Left wing extremism. The Centre has already suggested streamlining of inter-state operations against Naxalites by use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), sharing intelligence and fine tuning action plan.

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