16/8 : US Consul Gen joins condemnation
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, Aug 24: US Consul General in Calcutta Henry Victor Jardine, while strongly condemning the recent terror attack on Iskcon temple, said the perpetrators should be prosecuted accordingly.

The US Government is against all acts of terrorism and such he condemns the attack on Iskcon temple on August 16 that killed five people and injured over 40 people including Iskcon’s international director Damodara Swami and two US Iskcon members, he said adding that violence will not bring any solution.

He called on Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh and discussed the matter, Jardine said while expressing his heartfelt gratitude to the State Government for taking good care of the two injured US devotees - Bryan Nash and Laxmi Pyari - who are now out of danger, Jardine said at a media conference before wrapping up his three day official visit to Manipur.

On being questioned about the possibility of the involvement of religious fundamentalists in the attack, Jardine, who was an Infantry Captain in the US Army declined to comment on it but said the State Government is investigating the matter.

When asked whether the US Government takes up safety measures for its tourists and Iskcon devotees who are intending to visit Manipur in view of the temple attack, he said “we don’t restrict their movements but the Government gives advices to any travelers on the related issues of their destination and a website has already been launched on the same subject matter”.

About the grave law and situation besetting that State, Jardine said that it is an internal problem and the local authorities should address this.

Responding to a query, he expressed concern over the agitation launched by Irom Chanu Sharmila, who has been fasting for five years demanding scrapping of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act.

Jardine, who began his office assignment in Kolkata also spoke on the “US-India’s joint effort in combating drug trafficking and other crime related issues”.

Earlier in the day he met the functionaries of a State baseball team at Thangmeiband here.

The team, which has a good relation with the US sports authorities, would be provided game equipments from the US.

At Manipur University he also spoke on “Emerging trends in US-India Relations”, at Manipur University.

The talk includes the formation of the two countries’ global partnership to work together in various areas – science, technology, civil nuclear energy, space, democracy, HIV/AIDS research etc.

More developmental and economic packages would be given to the State by various countries including the US if the law and order situation improves, he said at the varsity.

Besides the Chief Minister the Consul General also held discussions on the State’s on the many issues besetting the State with Governor Dr Shivinder Singh Sidhu and State Director General of Police among others.