Address root cause, say intellectuals

“We welcome the public statement of Sonia Gandhi that the extreme neglect of the tribal areas is at the root of the present crisis in those regions.

“We hope that this appreciation of the need to go deeper into the question would lead to initiatives for immediate cessation of hostilities and dialogue so that the process of people-oriented development can be made feasible,” they said in a statement.

Besides Iyer and Roy, the statement was signed by Justice P B Sawant, writer Mahasweta Devi, historian Romila Thapar and prominent lawyer Prashant Bhushan among others.
“The rise of Naxalism is a reflection of the need for our development initiatives to reach the grassroots, especially in our most backward districts,” Gandhi said in the latest issue of party journal “Congress Sandesh”.

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