Salwa Judum for self defence against naxals: NHRC tells SC

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New Delhi, Oct 6 (UNI) The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), in a report submitted to the Supreme Court, has held naxals responsible for violence by the activists of Salwa Judum in self defence.

In the 118-page report, the three-member NHRC panel has said, '' The tribals can not be denied the right to defend themeselves against the atrocities perpetrated especially when the law enforcers are themselves ineffective or not present.'' The three-member team headed by DIG Sudhir Chaudhary has given a clean chit to the Chhattisgarh government for arming tribals to tackle the meance of naxalism.

According to the report, out of around 550 complaints of alleged excesses being committed by Salwa Judum activists, the team investigated 168 such incidents and found the allegations false as many of the villagers, who were alleged to have been killed under Salwa Judum movement or by security forces, were actually killed by the naxalites.

Under Salwa Judum movement, the state government has been giving arms to private individuals, mainly tribals to defend themselves against the violence by naxalites.

The NHRC panel, in its report, has also blamed naxalites for forcing the non-violent Salwa Judum movement into a violent one.

Salwa Judum activists have been subjected to selective killings by naxalites and the rallies of Judum leaders have also been attacked.

According to the reports, in many FIRs registered in most of the cases it has been found that the victims, who were said to had been killed are still alive and some villagers, who have died natural death have also been reported to have been murdered by Salwa Judum activists.

The apex court had taken a serious view of the allegations made in the PIL alleging that the Salwa Judum activists were killing and torturing innocent people and were also indulging in extortions.

The NHRC has suggested that the problem of naxalite violence has its roots in socio-economic deprivation resulting from large-scale unemployment in the state.

To tackle the menace ''multi pronged strategy'' is required as this is not purely an law and order problem.

The panel has by and large refuted the allegations made in the PIL.The district of Bastar is the main area affected by naxalite violence.

The three-member panel was also attacked thrice by naxalites.

UNI SC SV RP KP1306

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