The Centre will urge Naxal-affected states to lower the norms of recruitment in government jobs to open up employment opportunities for more number of local youth and prevent them from succumbing to Maoist propaganda,Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said on Monday.
Speaking at his first press conference as Home Minister,Shinde said his ministry was working on launching a special skill development programme,similar to the one being implemented in Jammu and Kashmir,for areas affected by Left-Wing Extremism in order to make local people employable in government services,especially in the police forces.
The young people in these areas want jobs in government. The success of skill development programme in Jammu and Kashmir has encouraged us to think of similar programme in Naxal-affected areas as well. As of now,the rigid administrative norms make many people ineligible for government jobs. We are considering ways to reduce the minimum qualification standards to facilitate more employment to local people,particularly in police, he said.
The Centre is implementing a training-cum-placement programme called Himayat for youngsters in Jammu and Kashmir in partnership with industry with the aim of making one lakh people in the next five years employable in government and private sector.
Shinde was talking to reporters at the belated monthly press conference of the Home Ministry which his predecessor P Chidambaram had made a compulsory event in his diary at the start of every month. Shinde,who has spent six weeks in his new office,took questions on a variety of subjects but was extremely careful not to take a categorical stand on most of them.
He said the Home Ministry had not dropped the plan of creating the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) and he will soon resume talks with the chief ministers,many of whom had objected to it. It is a good move but it will have to be done in consultation with the state governments. It is necessary to take the chief ministers in confidence, he said.
On the issue of Internet mischief originating in Pakistan,which the Home Ministry had blamed for the mass exodus of people of Northeast from other parts of the country last month,Shinde said the investigating agencies were still trying to collect all information about the incidents. As soon as we have all the information,we will certainly take this up with Pakistan, he said.
Shinde claimed that the situation in Assam was fast returning to normal and announced his plans to visit the Bangladesh border within the next fortnight.