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Six Maoists surrender in Bihar January 31, 2007

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[ 31 Jan, 2007 1646hrs IST PTI ]

BAGHA: Six activists of the banned CPI- Maoist on Wednesday surrendered to authorities in Bagha town on the Indo-Nepal border, police said.

Ramesh Oraon, Mahesh Oraon, Nagina Oraon, Gulab Mushar, Mahendra Mahato and Dil Kumar Mahato gave themselves up to District Magistrate Mihir Kumar Singh and Superintendent of Police Vikas Baibhav at the police station at Bagha in Bihar’s West Champaran district.

They were later sent to jail, officials said.

Mumbai police arrested kingpin : Purchase of Ball bearings for missiles in claymore January 30, 2007

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Mumbai police arrested kingpin involved in arranging purchase and delivering steel ball bearing for LTTE fabricate lethal bombs

Tue, 2007-01-30 05:17
By Walter Jayawardhana

Mumbai, 30 January, (Asiantribune.com): The Police in Mumbai, India arrested a Muslim man born in Tamil Nadu but residing in Mumbai for helping to procure six metric tons of ball bearings to be used as missiles in claymore mines and other weapons for the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) for its anti-human and terrorist activities, Indian police sources said.

The 42 two year old suspect, Miraj Saheb Ismail, from Mumbai (formerly Bombay) suburb called Bhagat Singh Nagar, indicated to the police that the commercial metropolitan area and its state , the Maharashtra is being used increasingly by the Sri Lankan terrorist group for procurement of arms.

Additional Commissioner of Police, Bipin Bihari told Mumbai news men that the arrested man is originally from Tamil Nadu and living in the city for the last four years.

He said the suspect has facilitated members of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam to obtain six metric tons of ball bearings from Null bazaar in South Central Mumbai.

The area is a major hub in India manufacturing motor spare parts and steel ball bearings are widely produced in this area for that purpose. Ball bearings are also widely used as missiles in improvised explosives like claymore mines and other bombs by the LTTE against civilians and security personnel in Sri Lanka. By exploding two such devices the LTTE was able to kill 65 civilian bus passengers including 15 children, the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission said in a report.

The arrest came after four days following the arrest of five Sri Lankan Tamils who entered Tamil Nadu as refugees and three others in Chennai for trying to smuggle explosive material to Sri Lanka. Police said the five men have come to Tamil Nadu as refugees to smuggle 2000 kilograms of ball bearings to Sri Lanka after receiving them from Mumbai.

The Mumbai Police suspects that Ismail had sent at least six metric tons of steel ball bearings to the Tamil Tiger agents in Chennai in three consignments of 2000 kilo grams each to be smuggled to Sri Lanka.

Before engaging in this illegal activity, the LTTE using its Tamil Nadu political supporters like Vaiko, P.Nedumaran, and others and was able to raise a smokescreen alleging that the Sri Lanka government was importing explosives from India.

Additional Police Commissioner of Police Bipin Bihari said the suspect Ismail was a man who sold tea and coffee from his bicycle at night and this alleged crime was done while he was engaged in that job. He said to determine exactly what part he had played in the deal, the Mumbai Police is discussing the matter with the Q Branch of the Chennai Police who arrested the Sri Lankan Tamils in Chennai.

The first suspect to be arrested in Tamil Nadu was one also called Prabahakaran and the Police said he is an ardent supporter of the LTTE. After that, the others connected with the smuggling were arrested. Prabhakaran was arrested at a place called Tuticorin.

From November last year there had been constant reports that the LTTE was regularly using Tamil Nadu for procurement of arms since many other European and American connections have been sealed. Between Rameshwaram and Sri Lanka, the Tamil Nadu Police seized a lathe machine that could make bomb shells on November 29 2006.

When a vehicle coming from Andra Pradesh to Madurai, met with an accident at a place called Manamadurai police discovered 30 boxes of gelex boosters widely used to increase the velocity of bomb shrapnel.

On December 5 and 11 two separate groups of fishermen discovered live rockets in the sea when they got entangled in their nets.

Later security services who helped to diffuse the rockets said they had the striking capacity of hitting targets more than 10 kilometers away.

On January 24 this year the Tamil Nadu Police arrested the eight people mentioned at the beginning of this story for trying to transport two metric tons of steel ball bearings. Meanwhile Indian intelligence sources have also focused their attention to Maharashtra State since Naxalite there were able to get arms due to the surrendering Maoists in Nepal who could re-route their arms supplies to the Indian state and the LTTE could negotiate for a share of it.

Tamil Nadu Opposition leader Jayalalitha Jeyaram has criticized Karunanidhi’s DMK administration for once again allowing Tamil Nadu to become a safe haven for LTTE weapon smuggling activities. But Karunanidhi apparently pressed by the Center said that he would send a stern warning to those indulging in arms smuggling from Tamil Nadu to Sri Lanka. The Chief Minister further said such acts would cause a setback in efforts to find an amicable solution to the ethnic issue.

“We will not permit such acts in the state,” he said, replying to the points raised by D Sudarsanam, Congress Legislative Party leader, who raised the issue in the state assembly.

In an obvious reference to AIADMK leader Jayalalitha he said some people were trying to portray a picture as if militants had infiltrated the state and to “cause panic and tension” among the people. A Sri Lankan refugee Siva, who tried to smuggle materials used in making weapons, was arrested by the police. Iron ball bearings, cash and three cell phones were seized following his arrest, he said.

– Asian Tribune –

Top woman Naxal surrenders January 30, 2007

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Tuesday January 30 2007 12:10 IST

KURNOOL: Two women Naxalites of the CPI (Maoist) belonging to the Mahaboobnagar district committee today surrendered before District Superintendent of Police B Malla Reddy.

The surrendered Naxalites talked to the media here today in the presence of the SP and Nandyal Additional SP Rajasekhara Babu.

Of the two surrendered Maoists, Bejawada Pichamma alias Chinna Vijaya (24), from Kottur village in Dornala mandal of Prakasam district, was the secretary of the Mahaboobnagar District Area Committee.

She had joined the movement in 1998 and worked in Tiger Project dalam, Nallamala Forest Division and Telakapalli Area Committee. She also served as secretary of Jana Natya Mandali.

Superintendent of Police B Malla Reddy said that Vijaya’s husband, who was also a Naxalite, was killed in an encounter in 2004.

The other surrendered Maoist, Boda Muthyalamma alias Vanaja (17), from Thirumalgiri village in Nalgonda district, had joined the party in 2005. Muthyalamma worked in Krishnapatti, Nallamala Forest Division Committee and Mahaboobnagar district river belt as a member.

Speaking to mediapersons the two Maoists said that they surrendered before the police due to health problems and added that they were vexed with the Maoist policies.
Malla Reddy urged the Naxalites to shun violence and join the mainstream.

He promised that the government would rehabilitate the surrendered ultras.

Rudravaram sub-inspector Sudarshan Reddy was also present.

The two women said they were fed up with Maoist policies.

Three Maoists arrested in Orissa, explosives seized January 30, 2007

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Malkangiri, Jan. 30 (PTI): Three Maoists, including two women cadres, have been arrested and a large quantity of explosives and electronic detonators seized from the jungles of Karmaguda, about 80 km from here.

On a tip off last night, police and the special operation group (SOG) personnel had launched a joint combing operation in the forests during which the armed radicals opened fire at security personnel, forcing them to return fire, Superintendent of Police Himanshu Kumar Lal said.

The gunbattle continued for over an hour during which a total of 280 rounds were fired, including 50 by the ultras, Lal said.

When the ultras tried to flee the area under the cover of darkness, security personnel caught three of them.

The nabbed Maoists had been identified as Mangamma, Laxmi and Ramesh and they belonged to popular ‘Naxal Dalam’ active along the Orissa-Andhra Pradesh border.

Other devices seized by the police from the spot included fuse wires, cellphones, wll phones, computer equipment, besides Maoist literatures printed in Telugu.

Combing operation in the area had been intensified, the SP added.

Bihar:A Tactical Retreat by the Maoists January 29, 2007

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Ajit Kumar Singh
Research Assistant, Institute for Conflict Management

Inaugurating a three-day ‘Global meet on resurgent Bihar’ on January 19, 2007, in Patna, President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam observed that Bihar’s development was crucial for the development of India. And in an attempt to encourage investment, Bihar Chief Minister, Nitish Kumar, stated that ‘good governance’ was possible with firm efforts being made to establish the rule of law and make the State “an investor-friendly destination.” The persistent problem of the Maoist insurgency in Bihar, however, remains a crucial element in defining the trajectory of the State’s future.

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs, in its 2006 report on internal security, stated that, except in the State of Chhattisgarh, where incidents and casualties registered a steep increase, Left Wing extremist-related violence in the other affected States was contained during year 2006. According to data compiled by the Institute for Conflict Management, Bihar accounted for 40 fatalities in year 2006 – 16 civilians, five security force (SF) personnel and 19 Maoists (also known as Naxalites) – as compared to 106 fatalities in 2005, including 25 civilians, 29 SF personnel and 52 Maoists.

The decline witnessed in the Maoist activity in Bihar can be attributed to, among others, two primary reasons: first, there has been a tactical retreat on the part of the Maoists, as the success story of SFs, particularly in Andhra Pradesh, has forced a revaluation of strategies and tactics not only in Bihar, but in all theatres across the country; and the SFs have also, to a certain extent, been able to counter Maoist subversion with the arrests and killing of some of the top leaders in the State. The SFs have also made significant seizures of arms, ammunition and explosives through year 2006.

Some of the significant Maoist-related incidents and developments in Bihar in year 2006 included:

December 19, 2006: A Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) ‘central committee’ member, Arun Paswan alias Gautam, carrying a reward of INR 100,000 on his head, was arrested from the Chandauti Police Station area of Gaya District.

November 11, 2006: A weapons cache meant for the Maoists, including 585 INSAS rifle cartridges and Ordnance Factory products exclusively used by the Army, were seized from arms smugglers at Hamzapur. Three persons were arrested in this connection.

November 5, 2006: Ten CPI-Maoist cadres were arrested from an unidentified location under Lakshmipur Police Station in the Jamui District. Police sources said that the arrested included some Maoists involved in the killing of Munger District Superintendent of Police, K. C. Surendra Babu, in January 2005.

October 12, 2006: Four CPI-Maoist cadres, including an ‘area commander’ identified as Sahu, were arrested from an unspecified village under the Nasriganj Block in the Rohtas District.

August 18, 2006: Ten suspected CPI-Maoist cadres, including an ‘area commander’, were arrested from a village under the Mufassil Police Station of Gaya district.

May 5, 2006: In a joint operation, the Special Task Force, Bihar Military Police and Jamui Police shot dead five CPI-Maoist cadres in Lenin Nagar under the Sikandara Police Station of Jamui District.

April 24, 2006: Madanpur block Janata Dal (United) president Ashok Singh and six of his supporters were killed by CPI-Maoist cadres near Devjada village in the Aurangabad District.

April 3, 2006: A Deputy Superintendent of Police, Akhileshwar Prasad, was killed during an encounter with cadres of the CPI-Maoist in the Rohtas District.

March 14, 2006: A ‘zonal commander’ of the CPI-Maoist, Satyendra Yadav, who was wanted in connection with the Jehanabad prison attack, and his associate, Kesar Yadav, were arrested from Murgiachak village under Bhagwanganj Police Station in the Jehanabad District.

March 5, 2006: Three cadres of the CPI-Maoist were killed and two SF personnel injured as police foiled an attempt by the former to loot firearms from the Umaria Police Station in Gaya District.

January 15, 2006 : Seven CPI-Maoist cadres, including an ‘area commander’, all suspected to be involved in the Jehanabad District Jail attack, were arrested from separate places in the Patna District.

January 3, 2006: CPI-Maoist cadres shot dead a former Member of the Legislative Assembly, Hari Prasad, in the Chainpur area of Bhabua District.

Despite reverses and a decline in violence and fatalities, the Maoists are evidently in a process of making a qualitative penetration across the 38 Districts of Bihar. Reports relating to the Maoists’ politburo document suggest that they have launched a “socio-economic investigation” in places, both where their movement is strong and also in targeted areas, to identify new issues faced by the people. The “social investigation” is aimed at redefining the strategies and field-level tactics during the Special Congress – a major brainstorming session for the Party. It is significant, within this context, that “The study and documentation of local issues, grievances, and social and political power distribution” is a necessary prelude, within Maoist theory, to political mass mobilization around these grievances, the organization of protests and activities, which lead up to the creation of ‘revolutionary solidarity’ and eventually, to the training and deployment of cadres in the protracted ‘people’s war’. The Maoist threat, consequently, is “not limited to the areas of immediate violence, nor does this threat vanish if violence is not manifested at a particular location for a specific period of time. It is in the complex processes of political activity, mass mobilisation, arms training and military consolidation that the Maoist potential has to be estimated. While incidents of violence and fatalities would be crucial in any threat assessment, they cannot exhaust its entire content.” These broad considerations suggest that the Maoists are focusing on a process of political mobilization and consolidation, which will translate into violence in the foreseeable future.

It is also important to note that it is not long since Bihar was witness to the Jehanabad incursion. In what is arguably the most daring attack in the history of the Naxalite movement in India, approximately 150 to 200 armed cadres of the CPI-Maoist along with an estimated 800 ‘sympathizers’ attacked the Jehanabad District Jail on November 13, 2005, and freed 341 prisoners, abducted more than 20 activists of the Ranvir Sena (a militia of upper caste landlords), and looted a large quantity of arms and ammunition. During the siege, seven persons (three Maoists, two Ranvir Sena cadres and two police personnel) were killed. Subsequently, the Maoists executed nine of the abducted Ranvir Sena cadres. The Maoists, who had virtually taken control of all entry and exit points of the town, also carried out synchronized attacks on the District Court, Police Lines, District Armoury, the residence of the District Judge, and the S. S. College, where a Paramilitary Forces’ (PMF) camp had been set up. The Jehanabad incident is not an isolated one, and essentially marks a ‘higher stage of militarization’ of the movement.

Crucially, the lower levels of violence do not mean that the state has reclaimed territory from the rebels or secured any dramatic victories over the rebels. Indeed, the number of Districts affected by Maoist activity in Bihar has, according to sources, remained more or less the same. There are variations in the levels and patterns of Maoist activity but the larger picture remains unchanged. While 11 Districts (West Champaran, East Champaran, Kaimur, Rohtas, Aurangabad, Gaya, Nawada, Jamui, Patna (south), Jehanabad, Arwal) are categorized as highly affected, another 16 Districts (Sheohar, Sitamari, Begusarai, Lakhisarai, Munger, Muzaffarpur, Nalanda, Khagaria, Darbhanga, Buxar, Siwan, Vaishali, Saharsha, Banka, Purnia, Katihar) are categorized as moderately affected, while three Districts (Madhubani, Sapaul, Araria) fall into the category of ‘targeted’, bringing the total number of Districts in the State affected by Maoist activity to 29 (of a total of 38 Districts). The last category of ‘targeted’ areas, however, remains a misnomer in the strategic sense since the CPI-Maoist has clearly expressed its intent to capture power across the length and breadth of the country, and has established Regional, State and Special Zonal Committees to oversee this grand enterprise that leave only a handful of areas presently outside its scope.

However, as far as their operational areas are concerned, the CPI-Maoist continues to maintain a presence in all parts of Bihar, with their primary support base located in the lower castes and poor peasantry. Increased Maoist mobilization has been recorded in south central Bihar with a gradual spread towards the northeastern part of the State. This upsurge has also been made possible by the Ranvir Sena’s decline in the Magadh region (Gaya, Nawada, Aurangabad and Jehanabad Districts), which this armed group dominated earlier.

Effective counter-insurgency operations against the Maoists have been inhibited by a lack of inter-State co-ordination, a perennial problem which the Centre is presently attempting address in earnest. Recent reports indicate that West Bengal, Bihar and Jharkhand were unable to reach an understanding to launch a joint offensive against the extremists, at the Bhubaneswar meeting convened by the Union Home Ministry in December 2006, to evolve a coordinated response to the Maoist problem. The Director General of the Jharkhand Police, J. Mahapatra, claimed that Bihar officials argued that they were not ‘dependent’ on Jharkhand to contain the Naxalite menace. Asserting that they were self-sufficient, the Bihar representatives stated their forces had been able to ‘successfully fight’ the Naxalites, according to Mahapatra.

The spread of left wing extremism in Bihar has been enormously facilitated by the sheer and endemic lack of human development, a crumbling State administrative machinery, and decaying infrastructure. Maoists have taken advantage of this widespread ‘retreat of governance’, not only in establishing a network of extortion, imposing ‘levies’ and ‘revolutionary taxes’, but also initiating ‘developmental works’ in some areas.

Maoist subversion in Bihar overlays a much wider breakdown of the criminal justice system, and the State has persistently neglected issues of policing and the need to develop adequate capacities of response to various challenges of internal security. The Crime in India – 2005 report, published by the National Crime Records Bureau, indicates that Bihar has policemen per lakh population ratio of 57, the worst in the country. By comparison, national average is 122, and some states boast a ratio of 854 (Mizoram) and 609 (Sikkim). Even the other Maoist afflicted States are significantly better off: Andhra Pradesh has a ratio of 98; Chhattisgarh, 103, Jharkhand (which was formerly part of Bihar), 85; and Orissa, 90. Substantial sections of the Bihar Police continue to use the antiquated World War I vintage bolt-action .303 rifles and other obsolete equipment, as compared to the more sophisticated weaponry with the Maoists, and the condition of rural Police Stations in the State is abysmal. Organisations representing Police personnel in the State have repeatedly protested against the lack of adequate protection to the Police and their families, and the Force is hardly in a position to protect the public. Despite the rhetoric of ‘resurgent Bihar’, unless these parameters undergo dramatic transformation, little can be expected in any other sphere of development. In the absence of improved security, the expectation of any noticeable surge in investment and economic activities will prove entirely illusory.

South Asia Intelligence Review (SAIR)

One constable killed, two others injured in Naxal encounter January 29, 2007

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Tuesday January 30 2007 00:00 IST
UNI

KHAMMAM: One police constable was killed and two others injured in a firing between the police and Naxals near Wajeda forest area on Monday.

Police said the Naxals opened fire on the greyhound police while conducting combing operations in the forests on Monday morning, which resulted in police exchanging fire in an encounter.

The injured cops were airlifted to Hyderabad for treatment. Efforts were on to nab the extremists, police added.

Two women Naxals surrender in AP January 29, 2007

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Kurnool (Andhra Pradesh), Jan 29. (PTI): Two women activists of the CPI (Maoists), working in Mahbubnagar district of Andhra Pradesh, surrendered today, the police said.

Bejawada Latchamma alias Chinna Vijaya alias Lakshmi and Boda Mutyalamma alias Vanaja alias Parvati surrendered before Kurnool Superintendent of Police B Malla Reddy here.

Latchamma was Mahabubnagar area Committee Secretary of Jana Natya Mandali group, while Mutyalamma belonged to another dalam (unit) active in the Naxal-affected district’s river belt, they said.

SPO status for Naxals who laid down arms in ‘fake’ surrender January 29, 2007

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Nitin MahajanPosted online: Monday, January 29, 2007 at 0000 hrs Print Email

Raipur, January 28 : In the backdrop of the controversy arising out of the January 3 surrender of 79 Naxals, which was subsequently branded as “fake” by both the Congress and members of the ruling BJP, the Raman Singh government has decided to rehabilitate a majority of them as Special Police Officers (SPOs). The purpose of the latest move, according to the Chhattisgarh Police, is that these surrendered extremists will prove to be an asset for intelligence gathering in fight against the Naxal menace.

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Sources say while 19 of the 79 extremists were released by the Chhattisgarh Police, each one of them has now been asked to sign documents that empower the police to enrol them as SPOs. “By turning these surrendered Naxals into SPOs, the administration has offered them Rs 1500 per month plus the right to keep weapons for defence,” said the sources.

The surrender had been conducted amid much fanfare in the state capital and was claimed as the biggest ever success by the government against Naxals. However, the entire episode was soon shrouded in controversy after revelations that several of these so-called surrendered Naxals had been in fact picked up on mere charges of pasting posters, collecting firewood and preparing food for the rebels.

The sources also pointed out that the incentives now being given are meant to keep them on the government’s side till the controversy subsides. “And the entire machinery is trying to win these people over even as 60 of these alleged Maoists are still languishing in judicial custody,” they added.

Inspector General of Police (Bastar) R K Vij said this was part of the rehabilitation policy of the government. “There is nothing wrong if we want to get surrendered Naxals to our side. Everyone who surrenders is offered a choice of becoming an SPO and each case is scrutinised on an individual basis. If the local police deem that anyone may be helpful in their endeavour against the extremists they can freely recommend the person for the post,” the IG said.

The fact that Vij himself is heading the probe into the “fake” surrender is raising further doubts over the intention of the government.

nitin.mahajan@expressindia.com

BSF offers training to commandos to fight insurgency January 27, 2007

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Tekanpur (MP), Jan 27 (ANI): Border Security Force (BSF) in Madhya Pradesh is training 11 commando teams in insurgency related combat techniques.

Violence by the Maoists, known locally as Naxalites, in several states across the country has been identified as the most serious challenge to national security.

The training, which has been organised in the State’s Tekanpur District, was aimed at developing a strong internal security force to combat insurgency in various parts of the country.

“There are many states which are already dealing with insurgency. States like Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh. These states need such forces and so we want to promote it. Our training creates a base for the commandoes carrying out small team operations through various competitions. We are trying to instill feeling among the state police so that they take them and can give high level training specific to their needs later,” said BSF Deputy Director Brigadier S. C. Verma.

States like Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Bihar are some of the worst-affected states and have some of the lowest ratios of police to population.

In many states, private armies and vigilante groups, often government-sponsored, have sprung up to counter the Maoists.

Central Government had recently pulled the affected states together to coordinate their response to the Naxal menace. It says it will combine improved policing and socio-economic measures to defuse grievances that fuel the Maoist cause.

Maoist insurgents claim they are fighting for the rights of millions of poor peasants, labourers and landless tribals living in forests. The rebels operate in at least 13 of 29 states.

But analysts say this guerrilla war, waged mostly from the forests of central and eastern India, now poses major threat to internal security.

A human rights group said this week that 749 people had been killed in Maoist violence last year, including 135 security personnel and 285 civilians. (ANI)

`External forces trying to break India`s social fabric` January 27, 2007

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New Delhi, Jan 27: The government on Saturday said certain”external” forces were trying to “break” the social fabric ofthe country, threatening its internal security.

“We are a nation of multi-religion and multi-culture.Certain external forces are constantly trying to break oursocial fabric as they wanted to give us maximum damageinternally rather than externally,” Union Minister Of Statefor Home Shriprakash Jaiswal said here.

Addressing a seminar on `India`s security concerns;external and internal`, he said the threat has been continuingfor the last 30 years and might increase manifold in thecoming years if not dealt properly.

“India cannot ignore the possible dangers that can harmthe social fabric of the world`s largest democracy,”
he said.

Jaiswal said the need of the hour was to deal with thesituation in such a manner that the evil designs of externalforces were defeated by taking in minimum damage.

“We are aware of the dangers facing internal and external security of the country. Naxalism, terrorism, communalism,military strategies of India`s neighbours are some of theperceived and identified threats which are being grappled byour various enforcement agencies and defence establishmentsround the clock,” he said.

Jaiswal, however, admitted that situation in Jammu andKashmir, the northeast and some Naxal affected statescontinued to be a matter of concern.

“The recent activities of the ULFA are also issues whichrequire the strengthening of our national resolve to stronglyfight back the divisive tendencies among some segments of society who are anti-social in their approach,” he said.

Bureau Report