No report on Maoists asking farmers to grow opium: D-G, NCB

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New Delhi, Mar 5 (UNI) There have been no reports so far of Maoists asking farmers to grow opium to boost the latter's fundings, the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) said today.

Interacting with the media following the release of the 2007 annual report of International Narcotics Control Board here, DG, NCB K C Verma said there had been no reports so far about the Communist Party of India (Maoist) forcing farmers to grow opium for them as a tool to increase fundings.

There had been media reports recently that the Maoists were encouraging and at times forcing tribals to take up illegal cultivation.

Mr Verma said the crop is never cultivated in private land. It is usually grown in land owned by the government or in the dense forest. Since the land belongs to no one, no individual can be pin- pointed for the illegal cultivation.

The Maoist Communist Centre of India (MCC) and the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) People's War had merged to form Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) on September 21, 2004.

UNI NAB SB KN1538

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