Security beefed up at Lalgarh ahead of Chidambaram visit

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Lalgarh (WB), Apr 3 (ANI): Security has been beefed up in Maoist infested Lalgarh village in West Midnapore District ahead of Sunday's visit by Union Home Minister P Chidambaram.

According to sources, ten CRPF companies have been deployed here and more deployment is expected today. Anti-Naxal COBRA personnel will also be deployed.

Security personnel, equipped with night vision devices, are searching the forests and the exercise will continue for five days, sources said.

Twenty CRPF mobile camps and the COBRA personnel were functioning at Lalgarh, Binpur, Salboni and Goaltore.

Earlier, protesting against Chidambaram's visit, the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Lenin), CPI (ML), demanded a halt to Operation Green Hunt, the combing operation launched by security forces to flush out Maoists.

"(At) more than 200 places effigies of Chidambaram will be burnt. We will show black flags. We will hold black badges also because it is a black day, it is a black Saturday for West Bengal. (Our demand is) immediately stop the Operation Green Hunt, without any questions. You cannot declare war against our own people. Immediately stop the Operation Green Hunt and start dialogue with toiling masses of jungle and adjacent area," said Partha Ghosh, West Bengal state secretary of the party.

Lalgarh is regarded as a Maoist stronghold.

Most Maoist rebels have ignored government calls to renounce violence and negotiate. Instead, they have stepped up their attacks in recent months, prompting the government to go after them in a concerted strike.

Maoist rebels, had on February 22, offered a conditional 72-day ceasefire through the media, and said they were willing to talk to the government if it aborts Operation Green Hunt. Many believe the offer was a ruse to enable them to regroup.

The Maoists are fighting for the rights of the poor, marginal farmers and the landless labourers. (ANI)

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