Mamata promises Govt jobs to surrendered Maoists
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee announced that surrendered Maoists will be given Government jobs — home guards at that. No other Maoist-affected state in the country has thought of such an offer. Mamata's statement is all the more significant because in Bengal, homeguards often act as back-up for the regular police force that is perennially short-staffed.
The first chief minister to come to Belpahari in four decades, Mamata drew a 70,000-strong crowd at the Belpahari block grounds, where 24-year-old Maoist Rabi Murmu laid down his .315 bore rifle, a 9mm pistol and 22 bullets before her. He is the 37th Maoist to surrender before the Trinamool-led administration. Only eight rebels had surrendered during the Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee regime.
The state pays every surrendered Maoist a monthly stipend of Rs 2,000 for three years and a fixed deposit of Rs 1.5 lakh, which they can encash only after the 36-month period. There is also a financial reward for surrendering weapons — Murmu, for example, will get Rs 3,000 for each of his firearms and Rs 3 for each bullet.