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Tuesday, October 31, 2000

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A major setback

A. Jacob Sahayam, Karigiri

It is most unfortunate that Bangalore has turned out to be ``A city held hostage'' (Business Line, October 16) because of the Rajkumar kidnap episode. Besides the colossal economic losses, there was a setback for the Chief Minister, Mr S. M. Krishna, who started well.

All this had slowed down the initial enthusiasm in attracting investment and promoting the city as the best destination for investment, vis-a-vis other southern states.

Perhaps, the present crisis was the result of the failure of successive governments to nab Veerappan. If the government could find so many poor people detained and put in jail under TADA without trial for more than seven years, why could they have not ta ken action earlier? This also points to the necessity for giving speedy justice. Similarly, the State will have to evolve some mechanism so that the minorities are properly protected.

If it is the Rajkumar incident today, tomorrow, it could be some other event which the anti-social elements may use as a pretext to create communal or linguistic disturbances. How long can the State get on with such a state of affairs? They have to initi ate urgent steps to ensure that people belonging to different linguistic and religious groups live in peace. Had the two Chief Ministers kept in touch with other, as they now do almost on a daily basis, major issues such as sharing of the Cauvery waters could have been satisfactorily resolved.

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A city held hostage

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