Centre to deploy nine new battalions in J-K: Rajnath

Jammu: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday said that nine new battalions will be deployed in the border areas of Jammu and Kashmir.

Taking note of the repeated shelling by Pakistani forces, Rajnath said that the Centre will soon take a call on extending the ongoing suspension of operations against terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir after Eid.

Addressing a press conference on his two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir to review the security situation, Rajnath said, “We will soon take a decision on whether to extend the ceasefire beyond Eid or not against terrorist operations in Jammu and Kashmir after reviewing the situation and meeting with people in the state.”

Rajnath stated that the central government has sanctioned two new women battalions for Jammu and Kashmir police, adding that it will boost employment prospects to nearly 2,000 women in the state.

“The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has sanctioned two new women battalions for Jammu and Kashmir police. One battalion will be for Kashmir division and one battalion for Jammu division. This will provide direct employment to nearly 2000 women of Jammu and Kashmir,” the Home Minister added.

Announcing relief measures to those affected in the constant ceasefire violation, Rajnath said, “The MHA has revisited scheme of giving Rs. 5 lakhs for persons killed during cross-border firing and ceasefire violations. Now this amount of Rs. 5 lakhs will be directly credited to the account of next of kin and all conditions relating to fixed deposit have been removed.”

To woo the migrants and refugees residing in the state, Rajnath continued, “The relief given to Kashmiri and Jammu migrants was increased to Rs. 10,000 in the year 2015. Now we have decided to give 30 percent hike. This amount will be increased to Rs. 13,000 per family per month.”

“We have decided to give financial assistance of Rs 5.5 lakh per family for West Pakistan refugees settled in Jammu and Kashmir. Nearly 5,764 families will be benefitted from this decision,” he further said.

Rajnath said that the security and safety of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is a topmost priority for everyone and the home ministry was concerned about it.

He made the comments after the Pune Police earlier in the day intercepted an internal communication of the Maoists revealing plans of a ‘Rajiv Gandhi-type’ assassination of Prime Minister Modi.

“We are always concerned about the security of our Prime Minister. Maoism and extremism have now been reduced by many folds. Maoists are just fighting a lost battle,” Rajnath said.

The Home Minister espoused that the number of Naxal-affected districts has come down from 175 districts to 90 districts in the last four years under the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government, adding that Maoist-related violence has come down drastically.

Rajnath further said, “I will still say that there are roughly just 10 districts in the country that is the most affected by Maoist extremism.”

On Thursday, the Pune Police told a court that they seized a letter from the residence of one of the five persons they had arrested in connection with the Bhima-Koregaon violence, which talks about the assassination of Prime Minister Modi in Rajiv Gandhi-type incident.

“Modi-led Hindu fascism is bulldozing its way into the lives of indigenous Adivasis. In spite of big defeats like Bihar and West Bengal, Modi has successfully established BJP government in more than 15 states. If this pace continues, then it would mean immense trouble for the party on all fronts. Greater suppression of dissent and more brutal form of Misson 2016 (OGH),” the letter read.

“Com. Kisan and few other senior comrades have proposed concrete steps to end Modi-raj. We are thinking along the lines of another Rajiv Gandhi type incident. It sounds suicidal and there is a good chance that we might fail, but we feel that the party PB/CC must deliberate over our proposal. Targeting his road-shows could be an effective strategy. We collectively believe that survival of the party is supreme to all sacrifices,” it added.

In the letter, it was also written that for Maoists, “defeating Hindu fascism has been our core agenda and a major concern for the party”.

Former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, while on a campaign trail in Tamil Nadu, was assassinated on May 21, 1991, by a LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) suicide bomber, Thenmozhi Rajaratnam, who detonated herself while greeting him with a garland. (ANI)