Orissa CM says Kandhamal violence due to SC-ST conflict

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New Delhi, Oct 13 : Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said that the recent incidents of violence in the State were a manifestation of the "conflict of interest" between Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, at the National Integration Council (NIC) meeting here on Monday.

While referring to two incidents of communal violence in Kandhamal, Patnaik said there were clashes between members of SC and ST communities in the past due to conflict of interest in matters of land rights, employment opportunities and religion.

"The recent incidents of violence in Kandhamal are a manifestation of such discord," he said.

Patnaik insisted that the situation in Kandhamal has been brought under control and a number of measures initiated to facilitate harmonious and speedier socio-economic development of different communities living in the district.

He further said that a Special Administrator of the rank of a Commissioner has been appointed in the district to oversee the development of the area.

Patnaik said that the administrator has been given powers to settle long-standing issues over land rights, and added that 53 per cent of the population in the district comprises of STs while 22 per cent are SCs.

In Kandhamal district violence against Christians and churches has been blamed on Bajrang Dal, prompting demands for banning the Sangh Parivar outfit.

ANI

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