Agnivesh to Chhattisgarh CM: Initiate talks with Naxals

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Raipur, Feb 12 (PTI) Noted social activist Swami Agniveshtoday appealed to Chhattisgarh government to initiate talks tosolve the problem of Naxalism.

The tribal-dominated Chhattisgarh is home to a largenumber of Naxals and is considered their bastion. Hence, theChief Minister should come forward to solve this decades-oldproblem through dialogue, he said at a press conference herein the presence of Chief Minister Raman Singh.

Five jawans of the Chhattisgarh Armed Force, abducted byMaoists on January 25, were released unconditionally lastnight in a village in Narayanpur district, Agnivesh said.

The social activist was present during their release.

The Naxals had demanded a 24-hour halt to operations bysecurity personnel before the release of the jawans. The stategovernment had responded by declaring a 48-hour ceasefire.

This gesture indicted that there was yearning for peace in thestate, he said.

Agnivesh said he will also talk to Union Home Minister PChidambaram and senior Central leaders about initiating talkswith the ultras. He said the jawans were not harmed duringcaptivity and were released without any conditions.

The social activist called for a review of the cases ofpeople, who have been jailed in the name of being Naxalsympathisers, and the innocent among them should be released.

Singh thanked Agnivesh, other social activists and mediafor the safe release of the jawans and added that hisgovernment was not averse to talking with Naxals.

The CM said the Naxal problem was not confined toChhattisgarh and assured to take up the issue of talks withthe Union Home Minister.

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