President to speak to govt on Orissa violence

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New Delhi, Sep 4 (UNI) President Pratibha Patil today expressed concern over the unabated violence against the members of the Christian community in Orissa and assured a Left delegation that she would speak to the Central government on the issue.

The assurance came when a five-member delegation of the CPI(M) and the CPI called on the President to demand necessary measures from the Manmohan Singh Government to restore normalcy in the state which has witnessed violence against the members of the minority community.

After a 25-minute meeting with Ms Patil, CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Brinda Karat and senior CPI leader Gurudas Dasgupta told UNI that they had requested the President to direct the Centre to take immediate action against the activists of the Bajrang Dal and the VHP for their ''involvement'' in the attacks against the Christain community.

''We have also requested Ms Patil to ensure that the Centre does not remain a mere spectator but take necessary action. If required, Central paramilitary forces including the Army could be deployed to maintain the law and order in the affected areas.'' Ms Karat said.

Mr Dasgupta said they had also informed the President that no FIRs were being lodged against the culprits and no compensation given to the affected. '' The legal process should also be started against the culprits as the Anti-Terrorist Squad in Maharashtra has got enough evidence of their involvement in bomb making to create communal disturbance.'' The other members of the delegation were CPI national secretary D Raja and CPM leaders-Tapan Sen and Suresh Kurup.

UNI KSA JT KN1444

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