Choking finances pivotal in fight against Maoists: Rajnath Singh

New delhi: Choking financial resources was the “most basic mantra” in the fight against Maoists, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said on Monday and asked affected states to “take ownership” of the anti-Naxal operation.

Inaugurating a meeting of chief ministers and top officials of 10 Maoist affected states, the minister said there was need to frame an integrated strategy to deal with the guerrillas.

Economic resources, he said, play an important role in any war — only when money is available is it possible to buy, eat, drink and possess ammunition and weapons. “Therefore, choking the financial resources of the left wing extremists is the most basic mantra in this fight,” he said at the meeting being held two weeks after an ambush in Sukma, Chhattisgarh, in which 25 paramilitary personnel were killed.
Declaring all out war, Singh stressed on “unity of purpose” and spoke of a unified coordination and command to counter left wing extremists (LWE).

Along with strategic command, unified command was required at the operational and tactical level — besides intelligence sharing which was equally important.

“We have to bring aggression in our policy, there should be aggression in our thinking, aggression in our strategy, aggression in the deployment of security forces, aggression in operations, aggression in bringing development, aggression in road construction.
“We will have to be cautious that extremely defensive deployment may result in reduction of operational offensive.”

“We have to ensure,” he added, “that the states take the ownership in the anti-Naxal operations where Central Armed Police Force will cooperate fully.”
Maintaining that the solution to the Naxal problem did not lie in any “silver bullet”, Singh said everyone must analyse the current strategy, thinking, preparation and resources.

As many as 12,000 citizens had lost their lives in Maoist violence over the last two decades, he said. Of these, 2,700 were jawans of security forces and 9,300 were innocent common people.

There were no shortcuts to success, he said, underscoring the need for short term, medium term and long term policies at different levels.

“There is need to find a solution for this problem and the strategy is available and encompassed in the word ‘SAMADHAN’. It means S- Smart Leadership, A- Aggressive Strategy, M-Motivation and Training, A- Actionable Intelligence, D-Dashboard Based KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) and KRAs (Key Result Areas), H- Harnessing Technology, A- Action plan for each Theatr, N- No access to Financing.”

Referring to the 9/11 terror attack, he said the US had taken on the challenge to ensure that there was no repeat. The 9/11 Commission stated that the incident was not failure of intelligence but the failure of imagination, he said.

“Therefore, the SAMADHAN, which we have discussed today has inbuilt potential for imagination. We have to work on imaginative thinking on the whole situation so that that we can ‘Out Think’ and ‘Out Manoeuvre’ left wing extremists.”

Declaring that the fight was a coordinated battle that had to be fought to the finish and one, Singh asked, “Who could be more suitable and competent than you all? The presence of our forces should instill fear in the left wing extremists and a sense of confidence among the local people and tribals – ‘Let your action speak for itself’.”

India was the largest democracy in the world that was sought to be weakened by the Maoists. “In order to free India from the influence of left wing extremists that encourage violence and killing, it is necessary that we all should think and work in this direction.

I believe that efforts to suppress democracy through the influence of the gun will never succeed,” he said.

The chief ministers of Bihar, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand were in attendance. However, West Bengal’s Mamata Banerjee, Andhra Pradesh’s N. Chandrababu Naidu, Telangana’s K Chandrashekhar Rao and Madhya Pradesh’s Shivraj Singh Chouhan were missing.

District magistrates and superintendents of police of 35 worst-hit Naxal-affected districts along with heads of paramilitary forces and intelligence agencies are also attending the high-level security meet.