New Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel on Sunday said gun was no answer to tackling the Naxal menace and favoured talks with violence affected people and other stakeholders, even as he ruled out withdrawal of security forces from the Maoist-hit areas of the state.
Baghel said his government will devise a new strategy that will involve talks with people affected by Naxal activities, including tribals, and others to resolve the three-decade-old Maoist problem that has claimed several lives.
He said the state government was committed to fulfilling all pre-poll promises made by his party, including farm loan waiver and liquor ban.
The Congress leader took charge as chief minister a week ago after his party posted a landslide victory in the just held assembly polls in the tribal dominated state.
“Naxal issue cannot be tackled with the barrel of gun. The use of guns by previous (BJP) government to solve the Naxal problem has resulted in its expansion from just three development blocks to 15 districts of the state in the last 15 years,” Baghel told PTI in an interview.
Baghel (57), however, ruled out any possibility of withdrawing paramilitary forces, deployed in large numbers, from the Naxal-hit districts till the new strategy is formulated.