Chidambaram pats Greyhounds

State lauded for bringing naxal problem under control

Photo: G. Krishnaswamy

SECURITY ISSUES: Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram, Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy and Home Minister K. Jana Reddy in Hyderabad on Friday.

HYDERABAD, Mar 8 : Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram has lauded the efforts of the State government in bringing the naxalite problem under control and achieving remarkable results in its operations, leading to police finally gaining an upper hand.

He said the violent incidents caused by the naxalites had fallen to the lowest number in the State now. The only exception was the attack in the Balimela reservoir bordering Orissa where 34 policemen lost lives.

Mr. Chidambaram was here to review the internal security situation with Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy, Home Minister K. Jana Reddy, Chief Secretary P. Ramakantha Reddy and DGP S.S.P. Yadav as a follow-up action on the decisions taken at Chief Ministers’ conference in New Delhi in January.

Addressing a press conference later, he complimented Greyhounds, the elite anti-naxalite outfit, for its successes and asked the government to build up pressure on the extremists. He was happy that the State was recruiting 37,500 policemen in one go.

Referring to what he called “bad terror incidents” at Gokul Chat and Lumbini Park here, Mr. Chidambaram said the charge sheet would be filed in one case soon, while investigation was in progress in the other.

Asked about the tardy progress of the Mecca Masjid bomb blast case, he said the investigation had "turned cold" as two prime suspects had died.

He announced that the Chief Minister had agreed to supply mobile phones to fishermen in villages along the State’s 1,000-km coastline to enable them to alert Coast Guard when suspicious boats or persons were sighted.

Mr. Chidambaram said vigil along and off the coast would be stepped up by Coast Guard, covering Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala. Police in Tamil Nadu were particularly asked to keep watch on non-refugees coming from Sri Lanka.