Mental shift

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Orissa violence continues

Posted by jytmkh on August 27, 2008

More people have been killed in violence against Christians in the Indian state of Orissa while India’s bishops have announced a day of prayer and fasting for peace.

UCA News reports Catholic education institutions across India have decided to close on August 29 to protest continuing violence against Christians in Orissa state.

The Church will also observe September 7 as a day of prayer and fasting for Christians in the eastern Indian state, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI) announced at a press conference in New Delhi yesterday.

Cardinal Varkey Vithayathil of Ernakulam-Angamaly, CBCI president, has appealed to all Catholic groups to organise “peaceful rallies across the country to register strong protest against the repeated attacks” on Christians.

Reports reaching the Orissa state capital of Bhubaneswar, 1,745 kilometers southeast of New Delhi, indicate no letup in the anti-Christian violence. Church people told UCA News on August 25 and 26 that at least five people have died in the latest attacks. They recounted how armed men ransacked and torched churches, presbyteries, convents and Christian healthcare centres and hostels in the state.

Hindu radicals took to violence after a Hindu religious leader, Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati, and five of his associates were killed on August 23 in the state’s Kandhamal district.

Maoists reportedly claimed responsibility for the killings, UCA News says, but some Hindu groups have alleged Christians masterminded the killing, a charge all Christian churches and denominations have denied.

Bidhan Nayak, a Catholic social worker in Kandhamal, told UCA News that Hindu radicals killed one person in Badimunda village. He says that violence continues unabated in the district. Despite a curfew, armed Hindu activists roam around the area “in a one-sided attack,” he added.

Fr Alphonse Toppo, vicar general of Sambalpur diocese, told UCA News that a mob burned to death Rajani Majhi, a 20 year old nurse at a hospital for children afflicted by leprosy, in Bargarh parish. The mob also beat up Father Edward Sequeira, the hospital director.

In another incident, two Catholics and a Hindu were killed at Tiangia village in Betticola parish, under Cuttack-Bhubaneswar archdiocese. Dasharath Pradhan, the Hindu, was a Christian sympathiser, Father Manoj Kumar Nayak, who hails from the village, told UCA News.

Meanwhile, the Holy See has expressed “solidarity to the churches and religious congregations” of India, victimised by violence.

It has called on everyone to rebuild an “atmosphere of dialogue and mutual respect.” The Indian Church and the Sisters of Mother Teresa have welcomed the appeal for reconciliation, but in Orissa the acts of destruction, including the burning of homes, churches and Christian institutions, keep rising.


Five Killed As Anti-Christian Violence Continues In Orissa (UCA News, 26/8/08)

Orissa: Vatican expresses solidarity to victims; Indian bishop calls events shameful for the state (AsiaNews, 26/8/08)

Orissa: Hindus torch Christian homes and churches, three die asphyxiated (AsiaNews, 26/8/08) 


Indian church workers raped, killed (CathNews, 26/8/08)


2 Responses to “Orissa violence continues”

  1. Rajputboy said

    This is just a begning. Stop eating,stop sleeping. Untill we kick all you cheat and crook missionaries out of India and free our land from you traitors, we will not sit alone.You though that tolerance means we are cowards…now you know who we are…We will kill all ya’ll.

    Jai Hind

  2. sanjeet said

    yes.this bloody missionaries should go to hell or pakistan for need to be in bharat.

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