Prime Minister asks Maoists to abjure violence, come forward for talks

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New Delhi, Aug 15 (ANI): Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh made a fresh appeal to the Maoists to abjure violence, come forward for talks and join hands with the Government for accelerated social and economic growth in the backward areas.

"Naxalism is a serious challenge to our internal security. We will deal firmly with those who resort to violence. We will provide all possible help to the state governments to maintain the rule of law in the areas affected by naxalism," said Dr Singh addressing the nation from the ramparts of the majestic Red Fort on the 64th Independence Day.

"I once again appeal to naxalites to abjure violence, come for talks with the Government and join hands with us to accelerate social and economic development," he added.

The Prime Minister further said it is imperative that both the Centre and State Governments should work together to meet the challenge of naxalism.

"It would be very difficult for any state to tackle this problem without cooperation from the Centre and coordination between states. We all need to rise above our personal and political interests to meet this challenge," said Dr Singh.

Noting that most of the naxal-affected areas are dominated by adivasis (tribals), the Prime Minister said it would be the endeavour of his Government that they join the mainstream of development.

"As I have stated earlier, most naxalite affected areas lag behind in development. We want to end the neglect of these areas. I have asked the Planning Commission to formulate a comprehensive scheme towards this end, which we would implement fully," said Dr Singh

"They have been dependent on forest produce for centuries and this dependence should not end without the creation of new sources of livelihood. We should also ensure that our adivasi brothers and sisters have a stake in the developmental project being undertaken," he added. (ANI)

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