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Andhra-Naxalite talks to continue

By Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad
January 17, 2005 17:05 IST
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Peace talks between the Andhra Pradesh government and Maoists will continue despite the increase in confrontation between the Naxalites and security agencies.

However, the Cabinet, which discussed the issue for nearly two-and-a-half hours in the wake of encounter killings by police and retaliatory action by the Maoists, wanted the Maoists not to go around villages carrying firearms.

Information and Public Relations Minister Mohammed Ali Shabbeer said the government has taken up a massive programme for the benefit of the people in the next two months.

"The type of stray incidents [that occurred in the recent days] may create problem for the entire programme. Hence, the Naxalites should not visit the villages with arms, which adds to the tension," he said.

The minister said that as per the understanding with the Maoists, they would stay in forests. They should not extort money, intimidate or kill people or forcibly occupy lands.

He said that the "stray incidents" occurred when the Naxalites confronted the police, "who necessarily have to go to villages as part of their routine duty to maintain law and order".


Referring to the demand by the Maoists, their emissaries and mediators for inquiry into the encounters in which 11 Naxalites belonging to the Communist Party of India-Maoist and CPI (Marxist-Leninist) [Janashakti] have been killed since January 6, the minister said Home Minister K Jana Reddy would discuss the issue with the officials concerned.
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Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad