Karnataka has become the heaven for the Christian groups for forced religious conversions. While large scale conversions are taking place in the urban areas of Bengaluru, Mysore, Davangere, Kolar, Chitradurga, mass conversions are happening in remote villages throughout the State and many incidents are going unnoticed. Hence the demand for ?Anti-Conversion Law? is increasing. Shri S Suresh Kumar, Minister of State for Law, Justice and Human Rights, Parliamentary Affairs and Urban Development, in an exclusive interview to Organiser Correspondent R Guru Prasad, explained the stand of the State government on various issues and also divulged the details of many welfare projects of his departments. Excerpts:
How does your government tackle the menace of conversion in the State?
?Anti-Conversion Law? already exists in many states and there is a strong demand to introduce similar law in our State as well. Karnataka Government is set to frame Anti-Conversion Law as the Hindu innocents are getting converted to other religions. Poor and uneducated Hindus are becoming victims for the false propaganda against Hinduism and our government is planning to enact a law after studying the similar Anti-Conversion Act/Anti-Conversion Bill of various states. Karnataka Government is serious in tackling this issue and we want to introduce the law very carefully as we have an example of Tamil Nadu State where the law was introduced but withdrawn shortly.
It is high time the Central government should pass the Uniform Civil Code Bill, which is long pending and much debated. With this Bill we would be able to treat every citizen equal and stop appeasing minorities as a vote bank.
Nation is debating the issue of attacking the pub in Mangalore. What is the State Government'sview on this issue?
There is no doubt that pub culture is anti-Hindu, and anti-Indian. At the same time nobody should take law into their own hands and behave irresponsibly. Members of the Sri Rama Sena, an outfit which masterminded the attack on the pub in Mangalore, will be bring to the books. It is evident that pub culture is a blot on the society and encourages illegal activities and destroys our rich culture and heritage. General public or Hindu groups are required to work unitedly in preserving our Sanatana Dharma by intimating about the unlawful activities or indecent act in pubs to the authorities so that Government take action against them under the law.
Nothing is wrong in moral policing as long as members of the group expose the indecent behaviour or unlawful activities which brings down the image of our country, in a decent manner. In the case of pub in Mangalore, they should have recorded the activities of the pub and lodged a complaint with the police or registered a protest or brought pressure on the government to cancel pub licence instead.
Assembly and Council sessions were held from January 16 to 24, in Belgaum. Have you achieved your goal of developing neglected Hyderabad-Karnataka and Maharashtra-Karnataka regions?
The main purpose of the session which was held in Belgaum was the discussion and allocation of funds for the development of North Karnataka. Unfortunately important time was wasted in discussing about the Lokayukta report regarding the mining issue and Opposition parties did not support us in conducting business in both the Houses of Assembly and Council smoothly. There were regular walkouts, entering the well of the Houses, which resulted in chaotic situation. People of North Karnataka are unhappy as a windfall of announcements of projects expected to upgrade the infrastructure and providing basic necessities for the welfare of the people belonging to North Karnataka did not materialise.
Atleast in future all political parties should understand the importance of session and the outcome will be better if it becomes a fruitful meeting of minds. I fail to understand why the Opposition parties who have experienced politicos, some of them are legislatures for more than two decades, do not take session seriously.
Can you elaborate more on your government setting up Law University for the first time.
It is a feather to our government. We have achieved what others could not do in the last 5 years. Today universities are being opened on subject oriented issues. We were lacking Law University as the Medical Education University, Technical Education University, Agriculture University are already existing and the Horticulture University is underway. We are establishing the Law University with the intention of bringing more professionalism, intensive coaching and same curriculum throughout the State. There are 85 law colleges in the State and all of them will come under the new university. Our government is thinking of extending financial benefits up to first two years for the new law graduates who will join Bar to practice law. Though our university selection process is not as tough as National Law School, we will assure that we will provide a very good infrastructure and an average student too can get admitted and pass out in flying colours. This university will be established in North Karnataka in a sprawling 50 acres, as we do not want it to be ?Bangaluru Centric?. We would like to motivate the students of the law to take up the profession seriously. We would include the history of legendaries of law like Nani Phalkiwala, Soli Sorabji, HR Khanna etc., who served the public in a true spirit by practicing law, rather than joining corporate world which offers attractive package.
What are the steps taken to check the garbage menace?
The condition of garbage disposal is so bad that unpleasant smell from garbage greets us at the entrance in many districts. We are now thinking of introducing scientific methods like, separating bio-degradable waste from non-biodegradable lot, identifying dumping yards etc., We will shortly announce 50 per cent subsidy for buying carts, vehicles for transporting garbage to outskirts , to Shri-Shakti groups who will take custody of their respective villages for clearing of the garbage.
What is the specialty of the ?Theme Park? which is coming up in Yelahanka near Bengaluru?
In case if war takes place in future it will be for the drinking water. Karnataka Urban Water Supply, which comes under Urban Development Department, feels that people know the price of water but they do not know the value of water. Hence we are coming up with a dream project called ?Theme Park? which exhibits the source of water, collection and pumping of water, storage and distribution of water to individual houses. School children and general public are allowed to visit this exhibition to get information about the subject. This project is to encourage public about the preciousness of drinking water and to motivate them not to waste drinking water.
What about the ?Task Force? for checking corruption in corporations?
We have erected a board at the entrance of the office of all the corporations in the State, which gives my mobile number, so that people who are harassed for bribe can directly contact me. On an average I am getting 15 calls per day and the ?Task Force? which is responsible for checking the quality of the work also takes an additional job of helping these callers.