Home Minister P Chidambaram on Monday said Assam was slowly becoming a new hotbed for Naxal groups,which were developing links with many insurgent organisations in the neighbouring states.
Left Wing Extremist activities have so far been known to be confined in the eight or nine states in the central and eastern parts of the country,though there have been reports in the past of their links with Northeast militant organisations,mainly for supplies of arms and money. Speaking at the Chief Ministers Conference on Internal Security,Chidambaram said while the overall number of casualties in Naxal violence had declined,it was not the true picture.
Two states are very badly affected,four states are affected and three states are within the arc of influence of CPI (Maoist). Assam has emerged as the new theatre of Maoist activity. There are also inputs about the links of CPI (Maoist) with insurgent groups in Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh, he said.
Chidambarams statement was corroborated by Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi who said some districts of his state had definite Maoist presence and that a few members had already been arrested by the state police.
Chidambaram said there was a broad agreement to continue the two-pronged strategy to deal with Naxal violence mixing police action with development work. …but,I am afraid,our capacity to execute the plans is not commensurate with the nature of the challenge, he said.
Chidambaram said a third angle to the anti-Naxal strategy was to neutralise the propaganda unleashed by the Naxal groups.
He then referred to another sort of public campaign one that appears in support of anyone who is arrested or detained in any security-related case and is guided by little more than religious affiliations.
The Union Home Minister also requested the chief ministers to cooperate in creating a security architecture that is a must for India in the coming areas,some elements of which were getting delayed.