New Delhi: The incidents of Naxal violence reduced by 77 per cent from all-time high of 2,258 in 2009 to 509 in 2021, Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai told the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday.
While giving a written reply to the query of Congress MP Akhilesh Prasad Singh, Rai said “The steadfast implementation of the ‘national policy and action plan to address Left Wing Extremism (LWE) 2015 has resulted in a consistent decline in LWE violence”.
“The incidents of LWE violence have reduced by 77 per cent from all-time high of 2,258 in 2009 to 509 in 2021. Similarly, the resultant deaths (civilians and security forces) have reduced by 85 per cent from all-time high of 1,005 in 2010 to 147 in 2021,” the Minister said.
The geographical spread of the violence has also reduced as only 46 districts reported LWE-related violence in 2021 as compared to 96 districts in 2010, said the Minister.
The Minister said the decline in the geographical spread is also reflected in a reduced number of districts covered under the Security Related Expenditure (SRE) Scheme.
The number of SRE districts was also reduced from 126 to 90 in April 2018 and further to 70 in July 2021, said Rai.
Similarly, the Minister said, the number of districts contributing approximately 90 per cent of the LWE violence, categorised as ‘Most LWE Affected Districts’, came down to 30 from 35 in 2018 and further to 25 in 2021.
As per the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution of India, subjects of ‘Police and Public Order’ are with the State Governments. However, to address the LWE menace holistically, a National Policy and Action Plan was launched in 2015. The Policy envisages a multi-pronged strategy involving security-related measures, development interventions, ensuring the rights and entitlements of local communities.
On the security front, the MoS also said, the Government of India supports the LWE-affected State Governments by providing Central Armed Police Forces battalions, helicopters, training, funds for the modernisation of State police forces, arms and equipment, sharing of intelligence and construction of Fortified Police Stations.
“The Central government also provides funds for capacity building of the LWE affected States under various schemes like Security Related Expenditure (SRE) Scheme and Special Infrastructure Scheme (SIS) to fight the LWE menace effectively,” said the Minister.
Under SIS, Rai said, projects worth Rs 991.04 crore have been approved during 2017-21 for upgradation and strengthening of Special Forces (SFs) and Special Intelligence Branches (SIBs) and for construction of 250 Fortified Police Stations in LWE affected areas.
Under SRE Scheme, Rs 2,299 crore has been released to States since 2014-15.
On the development front, the Minister said, the Central government has taken several specific initiatives in LWE-affected states.
Special thrust has been given on expansion of road network, improving Telecommunication connectivity, skill development and financial inclusion, said Rai, adding, that more than 11,230 km of roads have already been constructed in LWE affected areas under specific schemes like Road Requirement Plan-1 (RRP-I) and Road Connectivity Project for LWE affected areas (RCPLWEA).
A total of 2,343 mobile towers were installed under Phase-1 and a work order has been issued for 2,542 towers under Phase-I of the Mobile Connectivity Project for LWE Affected areas, said the Minister, adding Rs 3,085.74 crore has been released to the most LWE affected districts under the scheme ‘Special Central Assistance (SCA)’ to fill the critical gaps in public infrastructure and services.
“Special focus has been given on Skill Development and Entrepreneurship of the youth in these areas. 47 Industrial Training Institute (ITI) and 68 Skill Development Centres (SDC) have been approved under Skill Development Scheme in 47 districts affected by LWE,” said the MoS.
“For financial inclusion of the local populace in these areas, 1,258 Bank Branches were opened, 1348 ATMs were installed and 22,202 Banking Correspondents have been made functional in 30 Most LWE affected districts in the last seven years. Further, 4,903 new Post Offices have also been opened in 90 LWE-affected districts in the last seven years,” Rai added. (ANI)