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Naxal blackout: Water rationing in Bastar
June 04, 2007 14:51 IST
People in the backward Bastar region in Chhattisgarh have been living in darkness since the last five days after naxals blew up power transmission towers leading to a power blackout.
A change in Maoist strategy by targetting vital installations like high tension transmission lines has added to the woes of Bastar tribals, who were trapped in the hostilities between the ultras and the security forces.
He said security had been beefed up in jails in Bastar region, where Maoist rebels were lodged. A large number of naxalites, languishing in jails in the region, have been shifted to central jail in Jagdalpur.
Chief Minister Raman Singh strongly condemned the Maoists for destroying vital installations, creating hardships to the entire population of four tribal districts.
"I don't understand why the Human Rights organisations are silent over the issue," he said, adding that these very organisations have come out on the streets to protest the arrest of an individual for his alleged links with the Maoists.
Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress Committee president Charan Das Mahant said the state government has lost its grip over the situation.
He told UNI that considering the seriousness of the situation the state government should have deputed senior ministers and even officials to camp in Bastar to supervise the efforts to restore normalcy.
Though Bastar region was facing naxalite problem for more than three decades, Mahant said, it was for the first time that the situation had turned worse.
Chhattisgarh Confederation of Industry Vice-President Pukhraj Bhothara told UNI that the overall situation in Bastar region was fast deteriorating. He said any failure to crush Maoist activities with an iron hand would spell doom for the entire region.
"Some so-called Human Rights and pro-people organisations and a section of media are creating hue and cry. They are not concerned over the blatant violation of Human Rights of the common masses," he alleged.
Adivasi Mahasabha president Manish Kunjam, a former legislator, said normal life in Bastar had been paralysed with Maoists targetting power lines. The rebels, who claim to support the cause of the masses, have done no good to them, he added.
Public Health Engineering Minister Kedar Kashyap, who hails from Bastar region, said the Maoists were resorting to such acts because of frustration at being isolated.