Ambikapur (C’garh): Home Minister Rajnath Singh Monday said Naxalism was a challenge but the menace was now shrinking and losing ground in the country.
He was speaking here at the Passing Out Parade of the CRPF’s ‘Bastariya’ Battalion — comprising recruits from Naxal-hit districts in the state — which was commissioned into service today.
The battalion is named ‘Bastariya’ as its members are from the Bastar region in southern Chhattisgarh, bordering Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Telangana.
Appreciating efforts of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and the Chhattisgarh Police in curbing Naxal activities, he said casualties among the police force due to attacks by rebels have also gone down.
Singh said the life of a jawan cannot be compensated with money, but as a token of gratitude, the government has decided that not less than Rs 1 crore should be given to the family of a martyred personnel.
“Naxalism and extremism are a challenge, but I want to say that this menace is now shrinking and losing ground,” Singh said.
Singh said the decision to set up the specialised battalion was taken in view of the courage and valour shown by the tribal people to take on any tough challenge.
He said casualties among the security forces have gone down by almost 53 to 55 per cent and the geographical expanse of Naxalism has also decreased by 40 to 45 per cent.
“The credit for this goes to the our CRPF jawans and officials and personnel of the state police,” Singh said.