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Distressed villagers of Maoist affected areas protest in West Bengal

January 26, 2012 - Purulia

Distressed villagers from Maoist affected areas went on a hunger strike on Wednesday in West Bengal's Purulia District.

Dozens of villagers from the Ayodhya Hill area held a sit in protest before the District Magistrate's office, demanding immediate intervention of the state government in their villages.

An agitating protestor, Jalandhar Kumar, told the mediapersons that due to Maoists terror no development activity has been able to take place in their village.

"Due to the presence of Maoists, there are no schools, colleges, roads, houses or drinkable water, so all poor people from the village have gathered here in protest. Until our demands are heard we would not budge from this place," said Kumar.

The villagers were also upset about Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh, who is on a three-day tour of the Maoist-affected districts in the state, not visiting their area.

Since the past few years, the Maoists have stepped up their efforts against the government, targeting and damaging democratic and civil institutions of the nation, such as schools, medical centres and government property.

In spite of strong measures initiated by the Central Government to crush the ultras, the Maoist insurgency has gripped nearly a third of the country in its violent tentacles, spreading into the interiors of 20 of India's 28 states.

Maoists have also significantly increased their presence in tribal and rural regions in the affected states of central Chhattisgarh state and eastern states such as Jharkhand, Bihar, West Bengal and Orissa.


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