Kolkata, July 30 (ANI): West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee has said that joint forces would remain in West Bengal till the time they are required to.
Replying to questions in the Assembly, Bhattacharjee said: "The Central forces engaged in security operations to flush out Maoists would stay on in the region till their task was over.
He said he had discussed the matter with the Centre, which too held a similar view.
He further said that more and more Maoists are coming forward to give up their arms after the state government announced a special surrender-cum-rehabilitation package.
"After the announcement of the surrender package, the situation in Lalgarh is changing," he said, adding that the names of all those who are surrendering are not being published in media.
He said the government would provide Rs 1.50 lakh in fixed deposits, besides a monthly fund of Rs 2000 and other benefits to each surrendered ultra.
He also claimed that the influence of Maoists was waning as they earlier would not allow cops to organise football matches but the recent soccer tournament organised by the police at Lalgarh was watched by over 3,000 villagers.
"Changes for the better had also been noticed in the Goaltore and Salboni areas of Paschim Medinipur district among other places," he added.
Maoist attacks have increased this year, especially after the government launched a coordinated security offensive, involving tens of thousands of police and paramilitaries trying to flush out rebels from their jungle hideouts in central and eastern India. (ANI)