Mangaluru, November 26: In the wake of recent incidents of violence that took place at Bantwal and other parts of the district, a peace meet was held at the deputy commissioner’s office here on Wednesday November 25th.
Deputy Commissioner A B Ibrahim addressed the peace meet and said, repeated incidents of communal violence have taken place in the district, not only in the recent past, but since many years. Why is this happening and why are we unable to stop them? The incident (during Tipu Jayanti) took place in Kodagu but tension erupted in Dakshina Kannada resulting in death and injuries. Why cannot we take steps to stop this? Youths are filling up jails and going to court. They are unemployed. The elders in the society should think on how to resolve this issue. That is why this peace meet was called, he said.
Addressing the peace meet Superintendent of Police, Dr SD Sharanappa said, those who take law into their hands cannot escape from the law. Officials in the police department record everything on video and even in mobile phones and we make lists of all offences. Hence people come out of the thoughts that innocents are arrested. During arrests, we do everything with a scientific and professional approach. In the past one year, not even a single innocent has been arrested. Though there might have been delays in some cases, we did not arrest anyone on mere assumption. If people have any proof or information, they should come and share it with us. It is everyone’s responsibility and the police department needs cooperation from the public, Dr Sharanappa said.
In reply to suggestions from the people present at the meeting that the police should go around in muftis (civil dress) and keep a close watch, he said, we are already going around in muftis and keeping a close watch. All aspects cannot be revealed to the public. Workshops have been held on drug mafia and other issues. We have taken measures to curb drug abuse, eve-teasing, gambling and so on. Such activities are strictly monitored, he said.
Hameed Kandak, vice-president of Muslim Central Committee said, we want brotherhood and communal harmony in the district. All the untoward incidents are happening due to some miscreants and it is need to control them. Section 144 should be imposed for one year, and permission should not be given for protests and processions, be it for religious or social activities. Businesses and labourers suffered due to the bandh. The police should also arrest those who spread rumours and false information through various social media and proper action should be taken against them, he added.
Balakrishna Rai, president of Human Rights Federation said, though 144 section was implemented, some youths were moving around in groups. We should give importance to humanitarian values. Being responsible citizens, we should guide our youngsters. Ganja racket is widespread in schools and colleges, and also gambling centres near educational institutions. The administration should curb such activities, he said.
To this SP Sharanappa said, first of all, we need to introspect. The police alone cannot do everything. Officers come and go. But being responsible citizens, the elders must guide the young generation in right path and give them good suggestions.
Vasanth Acharya, CPIM leader said, political leaders are misleading the people of the district. Awareness should be created among the youth in schools and colleges. Criminal case should be filed against those who call for bandh.
DC A B Ibrahim said, we live in a democracy. In the fields of health and education we are equal to the developed countries and have high parameters. We must speak out and publicly boycott miscreants and all those who indulge in unwanted activities. We are holding peace meets once in three months and programmes that promote communal harmony at every level, he said.
The district administration has sanctioned Rs 35 lakhs to the police department to install CCTV cameras in various sensitive areas throughout the district. Banners and flexes could be put up only after taking permission from the district administration. Those who give call for bandh would be held responsible for the losses incurred, informed the DC.
DCP Shantaraju and others were present during the peace meet.