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Proof needed before blame-game in Orissa: Patil

Source: PTI
August 27, 2008 15:19 IST
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In the wake of violence in Kandhamal and other districts of Orissa which claimed nine lives, Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil said no political party or group should be accused without proper evidence.

"Who has actually done it (killing of VHP leader Laxmanananda Saraswati or indulging in violence that followed) we have to find out. Some people say this party or this section of society having this kind of ideology has done it... Let it be decided," Patil told news channel Times Now.

"I have been in contact with the chief minister (of Orissa) and I have told him that the incident in which the Swami was killed has to be condemned. But it should not cause damage to others and it is the responsibility of the state government and all of us that different sections of society should not be attacked," Patil said.

Patil agreed that initial reports suggested involvement of Naxals in the killing of Saraswati but said, "Unless and until it is proved who has done it, acting against some section of society is wrong." '

Saraswati, a VHP activist, had been active in the area for the last four decades. The Home Minister informed that 20 companies of paramilitary and helicopters have been provided to Orissa to deal with the violence that continues to rock the state. Minister of State for Home Sri Prakash Jaiswal is visiting the state to take stock of the situation.

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