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No atmosphere of alleged intolerance: Government tells Lok Sabha

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New Delhi: The prevailing communal situation in the country does not indicate existence of alleged intolerance in the country, Government on Tuesday said.

Replying to queries in Lok Sabha, Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said the number of communal incidents were 650 this year up to October and that the responsibility of dealing with communal violence rests primarily with the respective state government.

“Although it has been brought out in various fora, the prevailing communal situation in the country does not indicate existence of alleged intolerance in the country,” he said in a written reply.

Rijiju said the number of communal incidents in the country in recent years have been 668 in 2012, 823 in 2013 and 644 in 2014.

The Minister said as per available information, a total of 39 Sahitya Akademi awardees who received awards from 1976 onwards, one Lalit Kala Akademi awardee and three Padma awardees have reportedly returned their awards to the government.

“It has been informed that the Sahitya Akademi convened a special executive board meeting in which a resolution has been passed, requesting the writers to reconsider their decision,” he said.

Rijiju said to maintain communal harmony in the country, the central government assists the state governments and Union territory administrations in a variety of ways like sharing of information, sending alert messages and advisories and sending central armed police forces personnel besides others.

“The responsibility of dealing with communal violence as per the provisions of extant laws rests primarily with the respective state government,” he said.

PTI