Naveen dismisses allegation of Centre as incorrect

Bhubaneswar: With the Centre accusing the state Government of failing to check Maoist activities, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Saturday dismissed the allegation as "incorrect" and said a reply would be sent on Monday.

"A letter has been received from the Centre … it was found that the allegations made by the Home Ministry are not correct – they are incorrect," Patnaik told reporters here, reacting to the letter in which the Centre has attacked Odisha for an "alarming rise" in the activities of Maoists.

He said the content of the letter was discussed in detail at a meeting of the Unified Command held on Friday night. The meeting was chaired by the Chief Secretary and attended by senior officials of BSF, CRPF, police and others. A reply would be sent to the Centre by the state government on Monday which would point out the "defects" in their letter, the Chief Minister said.

While attacking Odisha for an "alarming" rise in the activities of Maoists, the Centre had accused the Naveen Patnaik government of failing to take any counter measure. "Odisha is the only state of India where activities of CPI (Maoists) are spreading to new areas at an alarming rate without requisite counter-measures by the state government," the Home Ministry had said in a communication to Director General of Police and Principal Secretary (Home) of the state government.

The Home Ministry told the state government that since the hostage crisis arising out of the abduction of two Italians and an MLA was resolved, it should rework on the strategy to deal with "rising Naxalism" in the state.