India will invest billions of rupees to upgrade its police force in a bid to battle with communist rebels who are active across the country.
Home Minister Shivraj Patil said the federal government will spend 16.45 billion rupees (€301 million) a year to modernize the police.
Top elected officials and police officers of 12 states meeting in the Indian capital also agreed to set up interstate joint task forces that would share intelligence as part of efforts to combat the insurgents.
The communist rebels, also known as Naxalites, are mainly active in six of India's 28 states - Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Bihar, Karnataka, Orissa and Chattisgarh.
Another six neighboring states, which are on the fringes of the insurgency, also sent representatives to Monday's meeting.
More than 6,000 people have been killed since the Naxalites launched their rebellion in 1981. The rebels oppose what they call oppression of the poor by the government and landowners.
Indian police accuse them of extorting money from poor villagers, forcing many of them to migrate to towns and cities.
A special taskforce would be set up in each of the 12 states to encourage better governance and faster socio-economic development in areas where the rebel-strongholds and where poverty is often more intrenched, Patil said.
Police would recruit locals from these areas to jobs within the force.
Every district affected by rebel violence would get 20 million rupees (€366,000) from the federal government to modernize its police force and improve intelligence gathering, the AP reports.
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