Chittoor Incident Merely a Smugglers vs Law Issue: AP to TN

Published: 10th April 2015 06:56 PM  |   Last Updated: 10th April 2015 06:57 PM   |  A+A-


HYDERABAD: Andhra Pradesh government today urged political parties in Tamil Nadu to view the Chittoor incident as merely a "smuggler versus law" issue and not act as per political "compulsions to satisfy their support base".

Reacting to adverse reactions and protests in Tamil Nadu over the April 7 Chittoor incident in which 20 people from that state were shot dead during an operation said to be against red sanders smugglers, Andhra Pradesh's Communication Advisor Parakala Prabhakar said, "Political parties have their own compulsions and support base, which they have to satisfy".

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"We would like political parties to view the whole incident as a smuggler versus law issue and not as a one state versus another state issue," Prabhakar told PTI. Meanwhile, the Tamil Nadu police detained Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazahagam (MDMK) chief Vaiko and about 1,000 of his supporters today while they were on their way to Chittoor to protest against the killing. When asked if the incident has taken a political colour in Tamil Nadu, Prabhakar said political parties have to come to terms with the law.

"Our appeal is that a (magisterial) enquiry has been ordered (by the AP government) and we should not jump to conclusions," he said. He said the enquiry would establish the "circumstances" (leading to the firing) and on the basis of the enquiry report, "We can take action or whatever".

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Prabhakar pointed out that the country's judiciary is seized of the matter, noting that petitions on the incident have been filed before Hyderabad and Madras High Courts, while the National Human Rights Council (NHRC) has taken cognisance of the matter.  "Judiciary is seized of the matter. We should end there. Let the judiciary decide," Prabhakar said. He ruled out giving "compensation" to the next of kin from Tamil Nadu who were killed in the incident. "Not at all (we will not give). We view them as smugglers," he said.

When asked about Left parties, human rights groups, and political parties in Tamil Nadu being critical of police action, and if this had "dented" the image of the Andhra Pradesh government, he said, "It (the incident) will be seen as somebody (AP government) who is very stern in its dealings with people who break the law".

Investors and potential investors would like to have a government which upholds the law of the land. "So, in that sense, our image has not been dented", he said.

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