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More forces for rebel ops

Ranchi, June 24: Senior security adviser in the Union home ministry K. Vijay Kumar today reviewed the status of ongoing anti-Naxalite operations in the Palamau region and progress of various welfare schemes initiated for integrated growth in rebel-affected areas.

The former DGP of the CRPF, who arrived in the state this morning, promised additional forces and other necessary support to completely drive out the Maoists from the three districts of the region — Palamau, Latehar and Garhwa.

According to sources, the senior internal security adviser held a meeting with senior police and CRPF officers in Latehar town and studied detailed reports on the ongoing projects. He also analysed the outcome of the ambitious Saryu Action Plan, a brainchild of former Union rural development minister Jairam Ramesh, and then visited the Saryu area to see the ground realities.

“I have given necessary directions to the officers. Wherever needed we will increase the number of police pickets and provide additional companies of central paramilitary forces. We will also take care of other aspects of the anti-Naxalite fight,” said Kumar while interacting with newspersons in Latehar.

A senior officer said the meeting continued for around an hour, during which the police made detailed presentations on both policing and development work.

“We also pointed out practical problems being faced while implementing various projects,” the officer, who was present during the meeting, said.

Sources said the central adviser appeared satisfied with ongoing work in Latehar, but he picked several loopholes in projects undertaken in adjoining Palamau district. Kumar observed that policing alone was not sufficient to drive out the rebels and win over their sympathisers.

Sources said Union home minister Rajnath Singh was keeping tabs on anti-Naxalite operations in Jharkhand after a number of BJP leaders highlighted shortcomings in the initiatives taken up by the UPA government.