New Delhi: The Centre is yet to take a decision on Trinamool Congress’ demand for withdrawal of the central paramilitary forces, engaged in anti-Maoist operations in West Bengal.
“Yes, there is a demand or request from the Trinamool Congress that the Central government should withdraw the paramilitary forces from West Bengal. But no decision has been taken,” home minister P Chidambaram told reporters when asked about the TC demand.
TC, the second largest constituent of the UPA, has been demanding that the joint forces be withdrawn from the state accusing them and the ruling Left Front cadres of “committing atrocities” in the name of tackling Maoists.
TC chief and railway minister Mamata Banerjee has been alleging that tribals were being subjected to atrocities by Marxist cadres and joint forces in the name of tackling Maoists, while the CPI(M) was “occupying” fresh areas.
On the allegation, Chidambaram said he had asked the director general of CRPF to look into the complaint and report back to him.
“I have asked the DG to look into the complaint that the Central paramilitary forces or CRPF is being misutilised in West Bengal. That is a complaint. So, we will look into it when he will report,” he said.
Last week, two union ministers of state belonging to TC - Dinesh Trivedi and Mukul Roy - also had met Chidambaram and reiterated the demand for the withdrawal of the central forces from West Bengal.
However, the Left Front also hit back claiming that Trinamool’s repeated demand to pull out joint forces from Lalgarh and Jangalmahal areas was a trick to facilitate Maoist control in these areas in West Midnapore district.
The operation by the joint forces comprising West Bengal police and the Central paramilitary forces started in Lalgarh in June 2009 to flush out the Maoist from that area.
The three western districts of the state - Purulia, Bankura and West Midnapore - are Maoist dominated.