'Tackle regional imbalances to curb Naxalism'

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New Delhi, Dec 2: Terming the government's approach towards Naxalism as ''unrealistic and very negative,'' CPI National Secretary D Raja today said the country's organised communist parties in the parliamentry process need to address poverty and regional imbalances to find a solution to the menace.

''As long as there is poverty and regional imbalances, Naxalism will remain. As a communist party we do not agree with their methods but the issues leading to violence has to be addressed,'' Mr Raja said at the India Economic summit here.

Attributing the opposition to the industrialisation of the mineral rich belts of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Bihar and Orissa to the lack of a comprehensive mineral policy, Mr Raja said, ''No one objects industrialisation, but it is important to see that the people displaced are rehabilitated.'' Various districts of Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, known as the Naxal-affected belts, are areas where the Scheduled Tribes and Castes make up more than 60 per cent of the population. Poverty is endemic in this region. The government is carrying out two types of development. The first is based on industries, mining and commercialisation, and the second is linked with the National Rural Employment Guarantee.

Speaking on the issue Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh said mere policing would not solve the issue. ''Naxalism will be a great threat. We need to put out heads together to evolve some policies,'' he added.

The peasant uprising which started in Naxalbari village in Darjeeling district of West Bengal in May 1967 has today formed a complex web that covers some 15 states of the country with active links to the Maoists of Nepal.

When the group started under the leadership of people like Kanu Sanyal and Charu Majumdar in West Bengal, it was still a part of CPI(M), but a split in the group took to underground and stayed there to build a powerful network spanning hundreds of villages.

In 1969, they floated the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist). The group had split several times and some of them had returned to the democratic process.


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