The Odisha government has approved the removal of five districts from the Left Wing Extremism affected Security Related Expenditure (SRE) scheme, a top police officer said.
The districts which will be out of the SRE are: Angul, Boudh, Sambalpur, Deogarh and Nayagarh, said Director General of Police (DGP) Abhaya.
"This recognises improved security situation in these districts. Odisha Police is committed to make the whole of Odisha LWE free," the DGP said.
Odisha has been experiencing the scourge of Naxal activities for more than three decades. As many as 19 of the 30 districts of Odisha districts were declared as SRE district, sources said.
"Robust security response as well as focused developmental activities have brought about a turn-around in the situation in the state especially in the last few years, said IGP (Operation) Amitabh Thakur.
In April 2018, six districts - Jajpur, Dhenkanal, Keonjhar, Mayurbhanj, Gajapati and Ganjam - were declared as free from Maoist activities and these districts were removed from the Central government sponsored Security Related Expenditure (SRE) Scheme.
The SRE is a Central scheme exclusively meant for capacity building for Maoist affected districts across the country.
With the changing situation, Odisha government has approved the removal five districts namely, Angul, Boudh, Sambalpur, Deogarh and Nayagarh from the SRE scheme.
Therefore, a total of 11 districts of Odisha have so far been assessed to be free of Maoist activities in a span of two years, largely due to the impact of security response and good governance by the state government, the DGP said.
The fizzling out of the Maoist influence in the state is indicative of the growing acceptance by the people to the developmental agenda of the state government and their dis-enchantment towards the obsolete Maoist ideology, the top police officer said.