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Updated: September 5, 2010 18:33 IST

Centre not sincere about talks with Maoists: Agnivesh

PTI
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Swami Agnivesh has tried to initiate peace talks between the government and Maoists.
The Hindu Swami Agnivesh has tried to initiate peace talks between the government and Maoists.

Social activist Swami Agnivesh today accused the Centre of not being sincere about its proposed peace negotiations as it had not ordered a judicial probe into the death of CPI(ML) spokesperson Azad. Azad was gunned down by Andhra Pradesh police on July 2 in Vankhidi forest area at Jogapur in Adilabad.

“The government is using me as a pawn to deal with Maoists”, Agnivesh, who is a mediator in brokering talks between Maoists and the government, told reporters on the sidelines of the World Religious Congress in Kochi.

He said he had met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on July 20 seeking a judicial probe into the killing of Azad, but nothing had happened so far. Agnivesh said he had also met BJP leaders L K Advani, Arun Jaitley and Rajnath Singh and CPI leaders A B Bardhan and D Raja asking them to put pressure on the government for a judicial probe into Azad’s killing, but none of them responded.

He said had he met Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar also in this regard on Aug. 23, eight days before the four policemen were taken hostage, to put out a statement seeking a judicial probe.

Condemning the killing of a police official, he said the act by Maoists was not ‘revolutionary conduct’

While addressing the religious congress, Agnivesh said the Union Government must ensure that information on religion or caste is not recorded in school or academic registers as religion divides people.

“A child should have no religion upto the age of 18.

The government must ensure that there should not be any claims for religion or caste in school register or academic register,” he told a plenary session on ‘Role of Religion in Promoting Human Rights’ as part of the ongoing 33rd World Congress here.

Keywords: Maoistspeace talks

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