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Marad peace talks remain inconclusive

Source: PTI
October 03, 2003 02:45 IST
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Prolonged deliberations between the Indian Union Muslim Leader and Bharatiya Janata Party representatives over the Marad violence failed to bring about a lasting solution to the five-month old issue, particularly on the demand for a CBI probe and rehabilitation.

It was decided to continue the talks in the presence of Chief Minister A K Antony in state capital Thiruvananthapuram on October 4.

IUML state general secretary and Industries Minister P K Kunhalikutty and BJP state president P S Sreedharan Pillai briefed mediapersons about the six-hour long discussions at the Government Guest House in Kochi.

Besides the two main issues of ordering a CBI probe to look into the conspiracy angle and alleged terrorist involvement and initiating rehabilitation of the minorities that fled Marad soon after the violence on May 2, the matter of disbursing increased compensation to the affected was also discussed.

Leaders of Hindu organisations felt that today's meet alone could not take a decision on the demand for a CBI probe and therefore wanted Antony to be part of the deliberations.

Kunhalikutty, PWD Minister Dr M K Muneer, IUML leader P K K Bava, members of Parliament E Ahmed and Abdusamad Samadani represented the Muslim community, Sreedharan Pillai, BJP state general secretary P P Mukundan, RSS leader C K Kannan and Hindu Aikya Vedi state president Kummanom Rajasekaran participated on behalf of the Hindu community.

Meanwhile, a panel of retired judges which looked into the Adivasi land issues in the light of the Muthanga incidents early this year has recommended grant of general amnesty to all arrested tribals, except those involved in serious crimes.

Former Supreme Court judge V R Krishna Iyer constituted the People's Judicial Enquiry Commission, comprising retired Mumbai high court judge Justice H Suresh and retired Kerala high court judge Justice P K Shamsuddeen, to go into the issue. The commission went into the issues that arose both before and after the Muthanga incidents.

Justice Iyer, chairman of Forum for Democracy and Communal Amity, released the panel's report to the media in Kochi on Wednesday. The report would be forwarded to Chief Minister A K Antony.

On the Muthanga incidents, the report said the government, instead of taking the initiative to find a peaceful solution, shifted the onus on the police, who treated it as a law and order problem, resulting in violence.

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