Surrender or face forces: Centre

Surrender or face forces: Centre

Naxal threat: Action against Maoists not war, says Chidambaram

Surrender or face forces: Centre

Union Home Minister P Chidambaram interacts with the media at Gandhi Bhavan in Mumbai on Wednesday. PTI

Addressing a news conference at the Congress office, Chidambaram described the killing of the PI Francis Induwar, who had been abducted on September 30 by Naxals, as nothing but a “cold-blooded murder”. His body was found on the Ranchi-Jamshedpur highway on Tuesday.

He said both the government and the Naxals claim to represent the poor people, and therefore, the issue could be resolved through dialogue and in a democratic manner.

“Unless violence stops, no development is possible... Violence is simply unacceptable in a democracy and republic. No government which has taken oath under the Constitution can accept an armed liberation struggle,” he said.

“We have no option but to ask the security forces to engage them (Maoists), apprehend them. As long as Naxalites do not abjure violence the security forces will confront them, engage them,” the Home Minister added.

Chidambaram said surrendering arms was a must for the Naxals, as the issues of development and poverty could be dealt with only in a democratic manner.

“Naxal problem has grown over last 10-12 years. We are now confronting Naxals and will not allow them to expand their area of influence. Naxalites are indulging in violence. All I want to say is that we abjure violence. They must shun violence if they claim to represent tribals and poor, the government also claims to represent tribals and poor and we can work together,” he added.

He, however, refused to term actions against the guerrillas as “war”.
“It is Naxalites who believe in violence, who use words like war and war preparation. We do not treat it as war.

“We are a civilised country... we do not wage war against our own people. Maoists must abjure violence and take the path of democracy and dialogue,” he said.
The Minister said the governments of states affected by Maoist violence had been asked to discuss the issues of development, neglect, deprivation and government structure in case they give up arms.

On the question of the Indian Air Force’s involvement in tackling Naxal terror, he said the IAF would take adequate counter-measures. He restrained from making further comments on the issue.

Foreign aid

Replying to questions, Chidambaram said there is no evidence that foreign countries are aiding Naxals in their armed struggle.

“There is no evidence of Naxalites getting money from abroad. They are able to raise money inside the country by looting banks, kidnapping and extortion,” he added.
On the reports of Taliban being pushed into Kashmir, Chidambaram said these were speculative reports. There was no basis to the story that Taliban militants have been or are being inducted into Jammu and Kashmir.

“Our security forces are vigilant. Will take all steps to check infiltration,” he said.