SPOs are not used in anti-naxal operation in Odisha: Govt.

Bhubaneswar: Odisha government today made it clear that Special Police Officers (SPOs) appointed by it are not being used in anti-naxal operational duties nor are they deployed in any security activities.

The state government`s views on SPOs was informed to the Naxal Management Division under the Ministry of Home Affairs.

"SPOs appointed by Odisha Police under Security Related Expenditure (SRE) Scheme are used for collection of intelligence only on security situation," the state government said in the backdrop of alleged used of untrained SPOs in the anti-maoist operations.

Their (SPOs) appointment, selection procedure, duties have been done under section 17 of Police Act, 1861, the state government maintained adding that the process of engagement of SPOs required utmost care and caution to prevent possible infiltration of hostile and inimical elements into police network.

"We also ensure that SPOs do not get exposed to any type of risk and threat. Going by complexities in the exercise, about 1900 SPOs were engaged in 2011-12," a senior official said.

Lauding role of SPOs in containing naxal menace, the state government said that they provide quality information on movement and activities of maoists.

Based on their informations many cadre have been apprehended and search operation have been conducted, they said.