Voicing concern over rise in incidents of communal violence, Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde on Monday said frequency of riots has suggested that there is a sinister motive behind such clashes and attempts are being made to polarise the society.

He said statistics on the communal violence show an increasing trend in the last two years and minor incidents tend to get escalated into major incidents of violence leading to displacement of affected communities.

“The frequency of incidents, especially in the last few months, seems to suggest that there is a sinister motive behind them. It is noticed that the communal forces seem to have got emboldened and are trying to polarise the society,” he said addressing the meeting of the National Integration Council (NIC) here.

The meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, was convened in the backdrop of riots in Muzaffarnagar that claimed 48 lives.

Union ministers, Leaders of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, chief ministers and lieutenant governors of Union Territories are members of NIC. Leaders of national and regional political parties, chairpersons of national commissions, eminent journalists, public figures and representatives of business and women’s organisations are also part of the 148-member NIC.

The Home Minister said only a small group of people was responsible for creating divisions in the society and it was the duty of all concerned to resist these forces.

More In: National | News