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'Karnataka govt is not in control of law and order'

February 07, 2009 13:55 IST

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Coming down heavily on the Bharatiya Janata Party government in Karnataka in the wake of the Mangalore incidents, Women and Child Development Minister Renuka Chowdhury on Saturday said there was a breakdown of law and order in the state where Talibanisation is happening.

"All instruments of democracy will be used to stop such incidents," she told reporters while commenting on Friday night's kidnapping of the daughter of a Kerala [Images] Member of Legislative Assembly and her Muslim male friend, from a bus in Mangalore, by activists of the Sri Ram Sena.

"The state government is not in control of the law and order situation... Talibanisation is happening. There is a clean communal divide where a Hindu girl is prevented from talking to a Muslim is a very dangerous trend," the minister said.

"There is a breakdown of law and order in Karnataka and I think we should look at it as a national security problem," she said.

Asked why the Centre was not intervening, Chowdhury said the government is 'respecting the Centre-state ties'. She cautioned that nobody should think that the United Progressive Alliance government is 'weak or cannot do anything'.

"We are repeatedly warning the state government that they should take cognisance. When it is necessary, we will take a step," the minister said.

Referring to the recent attack by Sena activists on women in a Mangalore pub, she said the issue should not be diluted by saying that it is only about 'pub culture'.

"It is a much deeper rot. Today it is a pub, tomorrow if you are sitting in the staircase in front of your house, they will come and slap you. It is fascism, there is an attempt to spread an ideology of hatred in Karnataka, an attempt to bring a communal divide," Chowdhury said.

Slamming the BJP-led regime, she said "it is fascism supported by a state government that we need to be concerned about."

Chowdhury said she will continue to pressurise the state government along with the civil society.

Voicing apprehension that similar incidents may take place on Valentine's Day, she said "I have no confidence on the state government...I am watching the situation to see how best to carry this forward... I am still giving a long rope to the state government. I will talk to the chief minister and is writing a letter to him," she said.

"We have various instruments of democracy to use when the situation arises," Chowdhury warned.

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