Centre plans one cop for each km in Bastar district
According to official sources, of these 11 battalions, three have already reached the dense jungles and village areas of Bastar division, which comprises seven districts. Sources added that the entire induction of these 11 battalions is expected to be completed by April next year.
The Bastar region, with districts of Bijapur, Sukma, Dantewada, Bastar, Kondagaon, Narayanpur and Kanker, already has 31 battalions or about 31,000 personnel of these central security forces apart from two special units of the elite CoBRA commandos unit of CRPF. With the addition of 11 more contingents, the officer said, Bastar will have 41 units along with state police squads within an area of 40,000sq km, one of the largest when it comes to the number of security forces in a defined geographical area.
Of the 11 battalions to be inducted over next four months, three have already reached the dense jungles and village areas of Bastar division. Bastar is strategic to security forces operations against Maoists as it is surrounded by the tri-junction of three other Naxal violence-affected states of Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha.
While the 10 new CRPF units will be deployed largely in Sukma and Dantewada districts, the lone BSF unit will be inducted in Kanker where the force already has seven battalions. CRPF sources said that the force was already in the process of de-inducting and subsequently training its battalions working at present in Jammu and Kashmir and Gadchiroli in Maharashtra to fill up the required numbers in Bastar.
The jungles of Bastar division have seen and claimed the maximum lives with some of the deadliest Naxal attacks occurring here, ranging from the April 2010 ambush which killed 76 security
personnel in Dantewada, last year’s ‘Jiram ghati’ massacre of the entire top Congress leadership of the state and latest killing of 14 CRPF men in Sukma.