"The Naxal problem is not a mere law and order problem," Gandhi said, addressing poll meetings at Daltonganj and Gumla in Jharkhand where Maoist menace is a major issue. The solution to the Maoist problem could be found through development and within the framework of the Constitution, she said, adding, the misguided youth could be brought back to the mainstream.

When Jharkhand was created 14 years ago, only three districts were affected by the problem, and now it has spread almost to the entire state, Gandhi said. Attacking the BJP government at the Centre, she said it was Congress's initiatives that had given rights to the tribals, the poor, the dalits, the backward class and the minorities under the Land Acquisition Act but the central government was now out to amend it.

The BJP was trying to change Chhotanagpur and Santhal Pargana Tenancy Acts that protect tribal land in the Jharkhand, the AICC chief alleged. "We oppose any change in the Act," she told a meeting held here in support of party candidates on the last date of campaigning for the first phase of polling on November 25.

She claimed that it was the efforts and schemes of the previous UPA regime that was now helping the nation in its march towards becoming one of the developed countries. On lack of development in Jharkhand, Gandhi said the people should tell Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who campaigned in the state two days ago, that it was BJP which had been in power for 11 out ofs 14 years since the state was formed, but it remained entrenched in problems.

"When UPA government was at the Centre, crores of rupees were given to Jharkhand for implementation of programmes like electricity, roads, drinking water and health, but were not utilised by the state ruled by the BJP," she alleged.

"Neither did BJP create employment opportunity. Jharkhand has 40 lakh BPL families. It is a cause for worry," she said.