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Mayawati Slams Chidambaram's Remark About Lapses

Lucknow, Dec 8: Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mayawati today slammed Home Minister P Chidambaram's remarks that there were lapses by the state police at the historic ghats of Varanasi which led to the blast.  "It
PTI December 08, 2010 16:18 IST
PTI
Lucknow, Dec 8: Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mayawati today slammed Home Minister P Chidambaram's remarks that there were lapses by the state police at the historic ghats of Varanasi which led to the blast.
 
"It is incorrect to say that the state government was alerted about a terror strike. There was no specific and actionable intelligence from the Centre", said Mayawati in a statement read out by his Cabinet Secretary Sashank Shekhar.
 
Shekhar said, the Ganga Aarti began at 6 pm, and the Dashashwamedh ghat in Varanasi was "sanitized" by 5 pm. But when large crowds enter the ghats for the aarti even after that it is not possible to stop them, he added.
 
In her statement, Mayawati said, terrorism is a nationa problem and the Centre should take stern measures to root it out instead of leaving it to the state governments.
 
"Unless our borders are secure, terrorists will continue to sneak in and strike. The state government knows well how to carry out its responsibility despite limited resources", she said.
 
Shekhar said, the alert that was being quoted about a possible terror strike on Dashashwamedh Ghat was dated February 25. That was during the Ganga Dussehra festival. To describe  an alert given almost a year ago as actionable input is improper, he added.
 
In her statement, Mayawati said there was peace throughout the state after the Babri Masjid verdict from Allahabad High Court and this had a positive impact. Similarly, there was peace on December 6 during Babri demolition anniversary.
 
"Unless the Centre rises above party politics, and provide arms and latest equipments to the state policemen, it would be difficult to tackle terrorism", Mayawati said.
 
"The Centre did not give any specific intelligence, and had only sent a routine alert thinking its job was over", the chief minister said.
 
There were blasts in Gujarat on July 26, 2008, in Mumbai and Delhi. "Were the state governments held responsible for these blasts?", asked Mayawati.