District in-charge Minister J. Krishna Palemar has claimed that there is nothing provocative in the speech of RSS leader Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat during Hindu Samajotsava that led to sporadic violence in Uppinangady on Sunday.

“What is provocative in his speech? I have seen the video clippings of the programme. I did not find anything provocative. He has made such speeches earlier too,” Mr. Palemar told presspersons here on Thursday. “He was indeed talking about the Government. There is nothing wrong in making remarks about the Government in public meetings.”

Mr. Palemar was responding to the demand by Congress and Muslim organisations for action against Mr. Bhat for instigating violence in Uppinangady that resulted in injuries to seven persons, including two policemen. “A few mischievous people are behind these incidents. The police are taking action,” he said.

Mr. Palemar said there was no pressure on the police to take action in a certain way. “There is no pressure (on police) at all. They have been given a free hand to maintain peace.” However, Mr. Palemar blamed the police for aggravating the situation on Sunday. “They should have dispersed people who had gathered in groups,” he said.

Inspector-General of Police (Western Range) Pratap Reddy said police were taking steps to prevent violence.