Ranchi (PTI): Jharkhand would soon have a battalion comprising retired army personnel to combat ultra-left Maoists active in 18 districts of the state. "The government has approved of a new battalion. Ex-army personnel will be recruited in it to control extremism and, if necessary, other law and order related crimes," Chief Minister Madhu Koda said here on Tuesday night. Koda said it was just a matter of time before the battalion comes into force.
The state had on October 28 witnessed one of the worst naxal attacks in which 19 villagers were mowed down by the activists of CPI (Maoist). Former Chief Minister Babulal Marandi's son was one among the victims. The Maoists, who operate in 18 of the 24 districts, have been trying to get a foothold in the Santhal Pargana division, which is free from extremism.