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'Chidambaram must visit Naxal-hit Chhattisgarh'

By Prasanna D Zore
December 23, 2009 17:35 IST
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Vanvasi Chetna Asram founder Himanshu Kumar while reacting to the letter dashed by Chhattisgarh Governor ESL Naramsimhan to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday asking Union Home Minister P Chidambaram not to visit Naxal-hit areas in Raipur and Dantewada on January7, told rediff.com, "It means that the state government has something to hide."

"We have not yet got any intimation from the home ministry that the visit has been cancelled," Kumar said.

It was Kumar and other NGOs that had invited P Chidambaram to visit the area and see for himself the plight of the poor tribals caught in a trap in the ongoing battle between government forces and the Naxals.

"If he (Chidambaram) cancels his visit based on the letter, then it will give a big boost to the Naxals," he said.

"The Naxals will then go about telling the poor tribals in Chhattisgarh that the Indian government has no interest in their well-being and doesn't want to address the human right violations committed against the tribals in this belt," Kumar added.

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Prasanna D Zore in Mumbai