Gadchiroli: Fear of Naxalites have practically stopped the police and the civil officials from visiting villages to implement development and welfare schemes, as well as attending to people’s grievances.
Panchayat samiti officials frankly admitted that there is always a threat to their lives due to Naxalite presence, while police officers said that they cannot move in Naxalite-affected areas without following the standard operating procedure.
In many cases it has been found that the police do not reach even murder spots or remote areas where other serious crimes have occurred. Often, victims’ relatives themselves are forced to carry corpses or material evidence to police stations.
Police officials feel that the Naxalites might attack them if they rush to locations without following standard operating procedure. Similarly, civil authorities too do not visit the remote areas due to fear of Naxalites, though they avail of all additional incentives given by the government for serving in Naxalite-affected villages.
The situation continues even after Maharashtra Home Minister RR Patil, publicly criticised government officials in Gadchiroli last month, for not moving to remote villages and also held them responsible for the increase in the Naxalite problem.
Due to such apathy of the administration, a large number of sarpanchs and police officials in the Korchi sub-division had resigned en masse recently.