Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram on Monday said that the police should handle agitations without causing death as far as possible.

Reacting to the police firing on Dalit protesters at Paramakudi on Sunday that claimed six lives and wounded many others, he told reporters at Karaikudi that he was sad to hear about the death of five persons (later, the death toll went up to six).

It was not proper for him to comment further about the incident without knowing the circumstances that prompted the police to open fire.

He recalled that the police machinery had been told, on several occasions, not to resort to firing as far as possible while handling people's agitations.

Reiterates stand

Mr. Chidambaram further said that he was reiterating the stand of the Central government that the police should handle agitations without causing deaths while tackling people's protests.