Thursday, May 28, 2009

CRPF to leave Kandhamal, Naveen wants them to stay

BHUBANESWAR, 27 MAY: With the deadline for withdrawal of central paramilitary forces from Kandhamal district barely two days away, chief minister Mr Naveen Patnaik rang up home minister Mr P Chidambaram today seeking a three month extension of the CRPF deployment.
Official sources said Mr Patnaik had earlier written to the home minister on 21 May making a similar request and today he spoke to Mr Chidambaram as a follow up measure. The home minister has reportedly said he would look into the matter.
It may be noted here that the CRPF which has been deployed since 10 months now is scheduled to return on 31 May.
Central paramilitary forces were pressed into service following the communal violence in Kandhamal district since August, 2008.
The state DGP Mr Manmohan Praharaj said he was hopeful of a positive response from the Centre. "Simultaneously, the state is preparing itself to deploy 16 companies of armed police and special police officers in the troubled region," he informed.
Reliable sources said the Centre had in an earlier communication to the state rejected the demand for further extension of central paramilitary forces. It had also sought a payment of Rs 181 crore from the state towards the prolonged deployment of central forces.

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