On March 7, Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) selected 400 tribal youth from Chhattisgarh to appoint as constables. Notably, most recruits hail from Chhattisgarh’s Naxal-hit areas such as Bijapur, Dantewada, and Sukma districts.
The recruits will be a part of the special “Bastariya Battalion”, named after erstwhile undivided Chhattisgarh’s Bastar district. The Government of India announced the Battalion in 2016 to carry out anti-Maoist operations in Chhattisgarh, with recruits selected from the Bastar region.
The Battalion would be instrumental in collecting intelligence about extremist operations due to their familiarity with the region’s topography and fluency in the local language. Therefore, the Battalion would prove advantageous to the security forces’ fight against Naxalite elements.
Also, the CRPF’s induction of youth would send a positive message to the masses, indicating the youth’s association with the Government through CRPF. The Government of India has also announced relaxations in CRPF’s recruitment process, such as for height & weight, for tribal men and women.
The recruits will be trained for engagement in Chhattisgarh’s Naxal hit areas, and an all-tribal battalion would aid CRPF in planning operations effectively while providing them employment.
However, it is pertinent to note that the Communist Party of India (CPI) had warned the locals against joining CRPF or the state’s police forces in the past.