With its seniormost officer, the cabinet secretary, planning to go and take stock of some of the states worst hit by Naxalite activity, the Union government seems to be signalling a high level of priority to dealing with the growing threat, both to internal security and the economy.
The trigger, of course, would be the need for a strong strategy to counter the targeting of vital economic assets such as power and communication lines by extremists, over and above the “usual” trend of unabated killings. But this high-level attention, hopefully, should also help bridge the disconnect between policymakers at the Centre and the stark reality of the other India, left largely untouched by the gains from the more “newsworthy” India’s stellar growth. It is a long-known fact that the Maoists have a free run in recruiting, training and indoctrinating cadres in the concerned vast region, thanks to the near-total failure of governance there. Stemming the rot calls for far more than policing.