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All India Radio (AIR): Union Home Minister’s Anti Naxal Strategy Meeting

  • August 7, 2017
  • 1
All India Radio
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Union Home Minister’s Anti Naxal Strategy Meeting

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TOPIC:

General Studies 3

  • Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.
  • Linkages between development and spread of extremism.

General Studies 2

  • Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

In news: A national anti-naxal strategy meet was held by the Union Home Minister. It included of chief ministers of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, Bihar, Maharashtra, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh. Also, secretaries of the central ministries, chief secretaries and director generals of the respective state police of the LWE-affected states along with the union ministers in charge of Ministries of MoRTH (Ministry of road transport and highways), Railways, Civil Aviation, MoRD (Ministry of rural development), Power, New and Renewable Energy and Telecom were present.

Need for the meet

In March and April alone, two big attacks had been done in Sukma where CRPF lost 37 men.

After demonetization, the government thought that the backbone of naxalism had been broken. But there were two back-to-back attacks which inflicted heavy loss of lives of the soldiers. This shows the lack of proper policy approach by state government, central government, technical feasibility of forces dealing with them, utilization of ground and electronic devices in the operations.

When Union Home Minister visited to pay last respect to the martyrs, there it was decided to bring in the meeting.

Picture credit (Till Year 2015): http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-462-WpIQ4o0/VhO_Y23cKrI/AAAAAAAAAd8/_81U0zuOmNs/s1600/untitled.jpg

The proposed strategy

For the naxal affected states like Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, there is need of short term, medium term and long term policies need to be formulated at different levels and it lies in the SAMADHAN strategy. It involves

  • Smart leadership
  • Aggressive strategy
  • Motivation and training
  • Actionable intelligence
  • Dashboard-based KPIs (key performance indicators) and KRAs (key result areas)
  • Harnessing technology
  • Action plan for each theatre
  • No access to financing

Apart from this, there is need of good leadership for the security forces, especially the need for unified coordination and command.

Limitations

  • Lack of utilization of technologies which are available at Chhatisgarh and Raipur in use for anti-naxal operation and green hunt. These equipment can automatically be used by NTRO and the governments concerned in all the operations by the state for gaining intelligence on day to day basis which is not being done at all.
  • All the naxal affected states have no inter-state coordination. There are problems in bordering areas of all the affected states- Odisha-Chhattisgarh, Andhra-Odisha, Bihar-Jharkhand, and Jharkhand-Chhattisgarh. These are the areas where naxals do an attack and ambush and immediately escape through the jungles to other states where other states’ police doesn’t know about their locations and planning.
  • There was a vision to develop the sukma belt and the bastar belt. In fact there was the order to construct the road in the fastest times possible. But that involves clearing the area to hold it. While clearing the area, it is known that Naxalites do not want development in sukma and create problems in it.
  • Collection of intelligence is a parameter of state government concerned. How to collect intelligence, use of satellites, drones, NTRO is not used optimally thereby creating challenges in transforming the naxal areas into development oriented areas.

Identified critical areas

Local intelligence

Use of latest technology in dealing with guerrilla warfare or jungle warfare. The terrain is extremely treacherous, heavily forested and the local population knows the lay of land, much better than outside forces. In such a situation, more than the technological aid, the use of local intelligence and help can be of more usefulness.

Optimum utilisation of technology.

India has drones and UAFs of Israel and USA to gather tactical intelligence over naxal areas in Chhatisgarh and Odisha. The National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO) which has based in Raipur for two years for operating the UAVs. There are various helicopters on call for helibound operations. The problem is how to utilize them in operations.

The terrain is very difficult as far as government troops are concerned excluding the trained troops of state police. The CRPF being a central organization is not well aware of the geography. Here they can us drones to find out their challenges ahead. So when they are in operation, they can come to know the intelligence and location of Naxalites. But there is information supplied in real time which creates further challenges.

State leadership

The pivotal thing in the fight against naxalism is that the concerned state should take the responsibility and duty of any operations undertaken. It is should not be by the central paramilitary forces to go there for operations but mainly in aid to the state government force.

The state government has to come forward like Andhra Pradesh which has ousted all naxals. The state government should remain in command of all the forces of whatever unified command stationed over there in Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Jharkhand, bihar.

The union minister must impress upon political leadership of the respective states that their own law and order enforcement agencies- police, Indian Reserve Battlaiion, state special IRB must own up the anti-naxal operations and strategy.

What next?

While the political direction is clear from Home minister’s side and CM’s side, somehow the civil administration and state police are not taking up the challenge with the kind of spirit required to deal with such forces. In sukma belt, the lack of state government participation in tackling the situation seriously is hampering the cleaning up of area. After the clearance of the area by security forces, there is a need to hold the ground for the development to take place. It can happen when the civil administration comes into place. Thus, it is a coordinated affair of the district authorities and police to act to act together with adjacent states and their districts. The state concerned should have coordination with air force, BSF, ITBP, CRPF and NTRO and go fully offensive in bastar, sukma to remove the Naxalites stopping the development.

The bosses of the civil administration and police were also present. The top officials have to take back the message from this meeting and implement on the ground. The offensiveness and the spirit to fight against the naxal should continue.

Connecting the dots:

  • Internal security challenge is more vital to country’s integrity than external challenges. Critically analyse the above statement.
  • Development is the best anti-naxal policy. How much truth do these words hold while dealing with naxals? Examine

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