Odisha CM urges Center to conduct research on meritorious students in Maoist-affected districts – Times of India

Bhubaneswar: Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik told the Center on Sunday that the state government had effectively curtailed Maoist activities in a meeting with other state chief ministers to review the situation of left-wing extremism (LWE).

The meeting was held in New Delhi under the chairmanship of Union Home Minister Amit Shah. The Orissa Chief Minister called upon the Center to encourage meritorious students and strengthen the infrastructure in the Maoist-affected areas.

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“MHA should know how many children in these LWE-affected areas across the country are nationally tested, like NIT, IIT-JEE and the like. People in LWE-affected areas,” Naveen said in his speech.

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He added that even while fighting the Kovid-1 pandemic epidemic, Odisha has continued its efforts to control LWE activities with considerable success. “Currently, ten of the district’s 0 districts (Koraput, Malkangiri, Raigarh, Bargarh, Balangir, Nabarangpur, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Kandhamal and Sundargarh) are affected by LWE. Significantly, only three districts in the state (Malkangiri, Kandhamal and Kalhan Among the worst affected LWE districts, the state government receives special central assistance of about Rs 33.33 crore annually for the development of the most affected LWE districts.

He added, “Of the 0% districts affected by the Maoist insurgency in the state, we now have no part of the three LWE-affected districts. Availability and economic prosperity are the biggest anti-LWE measures we should aim for.”

The Chief Minister proposed to the Center to consider making NH-3226 a four-lane road from Jaipur to Motu via Malkangiri to Bhadrachalam. Noting that the LWE-affected districts are not part of the railway network, Naveen said the Ministry of Railways and the Orissa government are building two legs from Jaipur to Nabarangpur and from Jaipur to Malkangiri on a cost-sharing basis.

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Naveen has demanded improved mobile connectivity in South and West Orissa. He said at least 28 villages in the state, the largest number in the country, have not yet received any mobile access or connectivity. The Chief Minister further said that at least 2,000 more mobile base stations are needed to overcome the problem. He emphasized the need for 4G mobile base stations for access to basic services like banking.

The Orissa chief minister has also called for better banking facilities in Maoist-affected areas. He said the state would provide land and buildings for setting up free bank branches. “I urge the Center to take immediate steps to set up the bank within a year,” he said.

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