AP forms religious tolerance panels at state, district levels to restore peace

CS Aditya Nath Das warned of stern action against gangs involving in attacking temples and vowed to restore peace and amity in the state

Vijayawada: Expressing concern over the series of attacks on temples in several parts of the state, Chief Secretary Aditya Nath Das on Thursday warned of stern action against such gangs and vowed to restore peace and amity in the state.

The CS announced setting up of state and district-level religious tolerance committees to curb attempts at fanning religious hatred and protect the religious sentiments of the people.

Addressing the media here, he termed the attacks on temples as unfortunate.

He said the state-level religious tolerance committee will have the chief secretary as its chairman, the DGP as vice chairman and principal secretaries of home, endowments, minorities welfare and representatives from Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Sikh, Buddha and Jain religions as members while general administration department principal secretary (Political) would serve as its convener.

The CS said that at the district level, the collector will be the chairman. The SP would serve as vice chairman and assistant directors from minorities and endowments departments and representatives from all religions would be members while joint collector (Rythu Bharosa) would serve as the convener.

He said both state-level and district-level committees would meet whenever any breach of religious amity occurred, in order to initiate measures and curb recurrence of such incidents.

Maintaining that a series of welfare programmes and developmental works are being taken up by the state government without political, casteist or religious considerations, the CS said these were receiving accolades nationwide. He made it clear that government employees and officers should work with the sole aim of providing benefits to the people beyond any narrow considerations.

Additional DGP Ravi Sankar, while referring to the series of attacks of temples in Antarvedi, Krishna and Rajahmahendravaram, said there were common strains in the way the attacks were done and it appeared that one person was doing this.

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