New Delhi [India]: Stating that the fight against Left Wing Extremism (LWE) or Naxalism has reached a "decisive phase", Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Friday took a resolution to completely eliminate the menace in the next two years.
Shah expressed his commitment while chairing a review meeting on Left Wing Extremism here in the national capital in the presence of Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, his deputy Devendra Fadnavis, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, and Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren-- the heads of all the Naxal affected states.
In his address, Shah said that "under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, success has been achieved in curbing leftist extremism in the last few years and now this fight has reached a decisive phase."
He said that major successes have been achieved against Left Wing Extremism in 2022 and 2023 with the determination of PM Modi and the cooperation of all the states affected by Naxalism.
The Home Minister further said, "This is the year of taking a resolution to completely eliminate Left Wing Extremism in the next two years."
Shah said that vacuum areas have been shrinking since 2019 and we have established 195 new camps of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs), and 44 more new camps will be established.
He further Shah said that the deployment of CAPFs against Left Wing Extremism, rationalization of development, and setting up camps in vacuum areas are the priorities of the Modi government.
The Minister suggested maintaining constant surveillance in the areas liberated from Left Wing Extremism so that this problem does not revive again. "There is also a need to monitor that Left Wing Extremists from areas where this problem has been eliminated do not take shelter in other states," he said.
Noting that the Modi government has adopted a policy of zero tolerance against Left Wing Extremism, since 2014, Shah said, "As a result of our zero-tolerance policy, the lowest level of violence and deaths has been recorded in 2022 in the last four decades."
"There has been a decline of more than 52 percent in Left Wing Extremism related violence, 69 percent in deaths, 72 percent in security forces deaths, and 68 percent in civilian deaths between 2014 and 2023 compared to the period from 2005 to 2014," said the Minister.
He also said that the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) are working closely with all state agencies to attack the financing of Left Wing Extremism.
Shah added that all the affected states need to make efforts by forming a joint team of civil and police administration to dismantle the network of financial support of Left Wing Extremism.
The Minister said that the Modi government had increased the ex-gratia amount for victims of Left Wing Extremism from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 20 lakh in 2017, now it has been further increased to Rs 40 lakh.
Shah also said the Modi government is taking several steps to speed up the development in Left Wing Extremism-affected states, and that special attention is being given to areas like road construction, telecommunication, financial inclusion, skill development, and education.
Shah said the Centre government has launched more than 14,000 projects under the Special Central Assistance (SCA) scheme to accelerate development in the districts most affected by Left Wing Extremism.
He counted that more than 80 percent of these projects have been completed and Rs 3,296 crore has been released to Left Wing Extremism-affected states under the scheme.
The Minister said under the Special Infrastructure Scheme (SIS), projects worth Rs 992 crore have been sanctioned for the construction of Fortified Police Stations, strengthening of State Intelligence branches and Special Forces of Left Wing Extremism-affected states.
In the last nine years, the Modi government has increased the Security Related Expenditure (SRE) by more than double in comparison to the earlier period.
The meeting, which aimed at preparing a roadmap to completely root out the Left Wing Extremism from the country and review the actions taken so far, was also attended by Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda, Union Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai; Union Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Environment, Forest and Climate Change Ashwini Choubey; and Minister of State for Communications Devusinh Chauhan as well as National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.
Home Secretary Ajay Bhala, Director Intelligence Bureau Tapan Deka and Director Generals of National Investigation Agency, Sashastra Seema Bal, Border Security Force, Central Reserve Police Force, National Security Guard, and Indo-Tibetan Border Police also attended the meeting along with Home Secretaries and Chief Secretaries of Naxal affected states.
Initiating the meeting, Bhalla welcomed all dignitaries and briefed them about the meeting.
The last LWE meeting took place in September 2021.