CPM blames both Centre and Orissa for Kandhamal violence

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Bhubaneswar, Nov 19 (UNI) The Orissa unit of the CPM today held both the state government and Centre responsible for the Kandhamal violence and demanded that the government should review the situation every three months and take necessary steps.

''The Orissa government lacked the political will to defeat the communal forces as BJP was a partner in the government while the Centre also failed to deal with the Kandhamal situation and did not send paramilitary forces in time to contain the violence,'' the CPM said in a memorandum submitted to Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar.

During a meeting with Mr Pawar, who is currently in Orissa heading a three-member Central Cabinet Committee on Kandhamal, CPM state secretary Janardan Pati and senior leader Shivaji Pattnaik alleged that the Hinduvta forces had ''selected Orissa as their laboratory'' and were trying to polarise the electorate on the basis of religion.

The CPM leaders said the Centre and state governments must take adequate measures to restore peace and normalcy in Kandhamal and demanded that a state minority commission be formed.

''Besides, peace committees should be formed from the village, Panchayat to district level giving adequate representation to the secular-minded people in Kandhamal and riot-related cases be disposed within a stipulated time frame,'' the memorandum added.

The memorandum also demanded that the central paramilitary forces be allowed to stay in Kandhamal till the situation was restored to normal and a comprehensive master plan should be chalked out to improve the socio-economic condition of the people of Kandhamal.

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