New Delhi: Forty-eight hours after one of the worst attacks against Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel by Naxalites in Chhattisgarh, CNN IBN has learnt that the Home Ministry will approach the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) soon with a new anti-Naxal strategy.
The Home Ministry has requested the Defence Ministry to lend them two unmanned aerial vehicles or UAVs controlled by trained Air Force personnel for their anti-Naxal operations in Chhattisgarh.
Since Home Minister P Chidambaram is aware of a possible resistance from some of his colleagues, he would specifically ask for aircraft including bulletproof choppers for defensive operations like evacuation, logistical support, search activities and movement of forces.
However, the request is still pending with the Defence Ministry.
Sources say Defence Minister AK Antony does not want to employ military resources against own people. The Defence Ministry is making it clear that the aircraft and drones will be used only for defensive operations, such as rescue, search and surveillance and cannot be used for offensive operations.
There is still no clarity if the Air Force personnel manning the helicopters can fire back in self defence if they are fired upon while engaging in defensive operations
There is also strong criticism of the air chief and the army chief who have argued that there is not much scope for the military to become involved in the operation against the Maoists.
Chattisgarh CM Raman Singh said, "It is not right for the Chief of Army or Air force to come out and speak separately. The PM should formulate a policy against Naxals and it should be communicated as a policy."
It is also learnt from sources that one of the demands of the CRPF contingent was to be airlifted; however, this didn't happen in time.
Already the government has instituted a probe into Tuesday's massacre.
"We have taken a decision to institute an inquiry into what went wrong and there will be a very short time frame for the inquiry to submit its report and when the report is submitted then we will look into it," said Chidambaram.
The final decision will be taken by the cabinet committee on security
One of the proposals also made is that the aircraft can be flown by CRPF and other security forces and not Indian Air Force pilots.