UAV for anti-Maoist operations in Chhattisgarh, says Shinde

New Delhi, June 11 (IANS) Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde Tuesday said the government was making arrangements to deploy an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) in areas close to Chhattisgarh to gather intelligence on Maoists.

Addressing a press conference here, Shinde termed the May 25 Maoist attack on a Congress convoy in Chhattisgarh as “a terror act” and said the government had made arrangements for unmanned aerial vehicles.

“We are making arrangements for them to be deployed in areas close to Chhattisgarh,” Shinde said.

Officials said there is a proposal to move UAVs from Begumpet airport in Andhra Pradesh to Chhattisgarh for more effective use in anti-Maoist intelligence gathering.

Asked about the attack on Congress convoy in Chhattisgarh that killed 28 people, including some senior state Congress leaders, Shinde said: “(We) had been maintaining (it was) a Naxal movement. It was terrorist activity.”

He said Congress leader Mahendra Karma, who was killed in the Maoist attack, had been stabbed 75 times and shot repeatedly. Congress leader and former information minister V.C. Shukla, who was shot three times in the attack, succumbed to his wounds in a Gurgaon hospital Tuesday.

“Is it not terror? It is terror act,” he said.

Answering queries, he rejected Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s demand for a white paper on internal security.

Replying to Modi’s demand in the context of Maoist violence, Shinde said the chief minister knows the “gravity of Naxalism”.

“I don’t think a white paper is required,” he said.

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