It is very important to neutralise the sources of income of the Left Wing Extremists, said Union Home Minister Amit Shah while chairing a high-level meeting with Chief Ministers and officials of 10 Naxal-hit states in Delhi on Sunday.

“It is very important to neutralize the sources of income of the Left Wing Extremists. The agencies of the Central and state governments should try to stop this by making a system together,” said Shah.

The meeting was held in Vigyan Bhawan where the ten Naxal-affected states—Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Bihar, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala and Madhya Pradesh—and their representatives apprised Shah about the current Naxal situation and the progress of developmental projects.

Shah urged all the Chief Ministers to give priority to the problem of Left Wing Extremism for the next one year so that a permanent solution can be found to this problem. He also said that it requires building pressure, increasing speed and better coordination.

During the meeting, Shah said that under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Centre is committed to the development of Left Wing Extremism affected states. He said that it is a matter of happiness to share that under the leadership of the Prime Minister, there has been a lot of success due to the joint efforts of the Centre and the states in cracking down on Left Wing Extremism.

The Union Home Minister said that while the incidents of Left Wing Extremism have come down by 23 per cent, the number of deaths has come down by 21 per cent. Shah during his address also said that in decades of fighting, we have reached a point where the death toll is less than 200 for the first time and this is a huge achievement for all of us.

Shah said that we all know that unless we get rid of the problem of Left Wing Extremism completely, the full development of the country and the states affected by it is not possible.

The Home Minister said that without eliminating it, neither we will be able to spread democracy to the bottom nor will we be able to develop the underdeveloped areas. So, instead of being satisfied with what we have achieved so far, we need to increase speed to get what is left.

Shah, who is also the Minister of Cooperation, said that the Government of India has been fighting a battle on two fronts for many years without paying attention to the political parties. He said that those who want to give up arms and join mainstream are heartily welcome, but those who take up arms and hurt innocent people and the police will be given the same response.

He added that the root cause of dissatisfaction is that development has not reached there in the last six decades since Independence and now to deal with it, it is very essential to ensure accessibility to fast-paced development so that common and innocent people do not join them.

Shah said that under the leadership of PM Modi, the development is continuing and now the Naxalites have also understood that innocent people will not be misled by them, which is why it is very important to continue uninterrupted development. This meeting is very important to be successful on both these fronts.

Shah said that in the last two years, a huge and successful effort has been made to increase security camps in areas where security was not stringent, especially in Chhattisgarh, as well as in Maharashtra and Odisha.

Shah said that if a regular review is done at the level of the Chief Minister, Chief Secretary and DGP, then the problems of coordination at the lower level will automatically get resolved. He also said that the fight against the problem, which has claimed the lives of more than 16,000 civilians in the last 40 years, has now reached its end and it needs to be accelerated and made decisive.