Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) General secretary Prakash Karat on Tuesday asked the central government to issue directives to the Orissa government under Article 355 of the constitution to contain communal violence in the state.
Talking to reporters, he said under Article 355, the central government could give specific directives to the state government to take immediate steps to check the violence and bring the culprits to book.
Karat opposed use of Article 356 in Orissa. "The question does not arise. Article 356 can be used only in exceptional circumstances," he said in reply to a query.
He voiced his deep concern over the attacks on Christians in Orissa and Karnataka and demanded that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government take action against the Bajrang Dal for its alleged involvement in the violence.
"The central government should take action against the Bajrang Dal under the Unlawful Activities Act as there is enough evidence of its involvement in the violence," he said.
"I wonder why the central government has not acted despite the Bajrang Dal's open claim that it is involved in the attacks on Christians," he said.
Karat said both the UPA government at the Centre and the Naveen Patnaik government in Orissa should take immediate steps to bring the guilty to the book.
He alleged that the UPA government had failed to act efficiently as the violence in the state was continuing for a month. He said the UPA government has so far done nothing but sending advisories to the state government.