Mental shift

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Vatican condemns anti-Christian violence by Hindu extremists in Orissa

Posted by jytmkh on August 27, 2008

The violence was triggered by the death on Saturday of Swami Lakhmananda Saraswati, a prominent Hindu leader. He and four others were shot by suspected Maoist militants, according to police. (Timesonline)

Followers of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), the extremist group for which Saraswati was a figurehead, retaliated through attacks on scores of Christian targets, including murders, rapes and the destruction of dozens of churches, locals say.

Saraswati had been at the forefront of a campaign to prevent low-caste Hindus and tribal villagers from converting to Christianity. The riots took place after claims by Hindu hardliners that “Christian militants” were behind his death.

Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, a senior Vatican official, called the attacks on Christian targets “a sin against God and humanity”. He added: “Certainly religion cannot be invoked for crimes of this type.”

In an official statement the Vatican said it “expresses its solidarity with local Churches and the religious orders involved, and condemns these actions, which are an affront to dignity, peoples’ freedom, and endanger peaceful civil coexistence.”

It also condemned the killing of Saraswati.

The Rome-based Italian missionary agency Misna said that it had received reports that two Jesuit priests had been abducted in the area but had no further details.

The Orissa state authorities tried to calm the violence on Tuesday by imposing a region-wide curfew. After the crackdown was widely violated “shoot-on-sight orders” were issued, according to Satyabrata Sahu, the district administrator.

However, local Christian leaders say that their communities remain in danger.

Dr Joseph D’souza, President of the All India Christian Council, said: “The current number and distribution of security forces in Orissa is nothing like enough to deal with the problem.

“We appeal to the international community to raise their voices to bring peace in an area where more people will die unless something is done urgently.”

Orissa has a dark history of inter-religious unrest, often triggered by Hindu suspicion of Christian missionaries.

Saraswati and his followers were widely implicated in the anti-Christian violence that blighted the Kandhamal district of the state over the Christmas of 2007 in which 95 churches were razed and several people killed. The chapter, said to have been triggered by an alleged assault on Saraswati, was branded the worst anti-Christian violence in India since Independence.

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6 Responses to “Vatican condemns anti-Christian violence by Hindu extremists in Orissa”

  1. kamakhaya Prasad Bhattacharyya said

    It is not the Hindus who want any interaction but it is the Christians who force their way into the majority Hindu population. Conversion has always been an unwanted behavior and the missionaries should not cry out about being helpless after provoking the majority population As is evident, the christian population has spokesmen in Vatican. If they are innocent then why these divisive voices are being heard from another country. Provocation is always followed by violence and there is no smoke without fire. If giving Dalits a better life is the mission then it is ok but the motive to convert by helping is not selfless but selfish. We dont want such nuisance within the country.
    ————————
    “While I firmly condemn all attacks against human life, the sacredness of which demands the respect of all, I express my spiritual closeness and solidarity to the brothers and sisters in the faith so hardly tried”……why sir?…..whats the problem in being close to humanity as a whole…….spirituality means above groupism or biases……a man of God should not differentiate between all of God’s creation

  2. rudraroop said

    Hindu Community would be the last community to promote violence. we dont like it. History is testimony that our great Hindu culture has withstood the tyranny of every invading army – from Moghuls, Portuguese, Dutch, and British. the Hindu culture has never sought violence as a means to propogate its views to anybody. on the contrary, Christianity is filled with examples as to how they take their religion around the world and force it on people –
    1.English and Europeans’ discovery of the new world (which would later come to be known as America) and the systematic killing of the Native Red Indians. today there are hardly any red indians left in the US and whoever are left have converted to christianity to escape the wrath of white people.
    2. Spaniards in South America. They wiped out thousands of years old Inca and Maya civilization.
    3. Africa.
    4. Australia. the ‘natives’ have almost disappeared.
    and finally British and Portuguese land on Indian coasts in the garb of traders. they have tried every thing possible to get rid of Hinduism in the last 400 years but could not succeed.

    So, who is actually violent? please for god sake don’t try to bad mouth the beautiful Indian culture in western press.
    Many warriors have come to the great Indian frontier to conquer it but they have all went back defeated by our nature of being peaceful and accommodating.

  3. joseph. Rodricks said

    Indians are proud of their past because they are ashamed of their present. Dear Mr Rudraroop please do not speak of Hindu culture. It is Hindus who kill female children in the wombs. It is Hindus who drive poor backward girls to prostitution, in the name of Devadasis. It is Hindus who destroys a large number of women by making them comit sucide for dowrylike things. It is Hindus who practice untouchbility and treat 50% of Indian Dalits like animals. It is Hindus who have deprieved atleast toilet fecilities in rural areas and even today woman reieve them selves in open fields either before sunrise or after sunset. Their are about thirteen rich people in India who are among the 100 richest people in India, but even after 60 years of Independence about 60% of the population still live like animals.
    and subjected to discrimination. No minimum fecilities is provided for elementary Education to crores of Children and You people are talking of culture. If this is your culture, please burn it and treat other poor and dalit human beings like human beings at least. Once you do this no one leave your relegion and go towards Christanity.

    • K P Bhattacharyya said

      Dear Joseph, I visited this site after a long time but what was interesting to find out your reply to Rudraroop. Not only does your language show how much anger you have against the Hindu’s (due to a typical insecurity faced by convertees) but is also a reflection of the fallacies and propaganda you have been subjected against the Hindu’s. Whatever you have said is also prevalent in Africa and South America. The rampant and violent conversion of the people in those continents are a documented evidence that Christianity or Hinduism has got nothing to do with the practices mentioned. I would like to state that any bad practices are being weeded out from our society and we dont need the pagan Church to teach us anything. The vatican is against most progressive practices (Abortion of Children for medical causes, Genetic research etc….) and has been documented to have been a highly casteist in many ways and the christian priests have been involved in everything from genocide in erstwhile Yogoslavia to child abuse and mass suicide and espionage in many countries. I would also like to point out that your nose poking in our matters is unwanted. Please try and alleviate the abject misery faced by your fellow christians who stay in a society marred by social and economic inequality (the un-touchability of the modern era). In UK the Royals are the head of the church, protestants and catholics are each others throats. Please wash your own dirty linen before you try and propagate your false faith which gives false hopes and worships a false God. Thanks and hope this would permanently shut you up.

  4. joseph. Rodricks said

    Indians are proud of their past because they are ashamed of their present. Dear Mr Rudraroop please do not speak of Hindu culture. It is Hindus who kill female children in the wombs. It is Hindus who drive poor backward girls to prostitution, in the name of Devadasis. It is Hindus who destroys a large number of women by making them comit sucide for dowrylike things. It is Hindus who practice untouchbility and treat 50% of Indian Dalits like animals. It is Hindus who have deprieved atleast toilet fecilities in rural areas and even today woman reieve them selves in open fields either before sunrise or after sunset. Their are about thirteen rich people in India who are among the 100 richest people in the world but even after 60 years of Independence about 60% of the population still live like animals.
    and subjected to discrimination. No minimum fecilities is provided for elementary Education to crores of Children and You people are talking of culture. If this is your culture, please burn it and treat other poor and dalit human beings like human beings at least. Once you do this no one leave your relegion and go towards Christanity.

    • K P Bhattacharyya said

      Dear Joseph, I visited this site after a long time but what was interesting to find out your reply to Rudraroop. Not only does your language show how much anger you have against the Hindu’s (due to a typical insecurity faced by convertees) but is also a reflection of the fallacies and propaganda you have been subjected against the Hindu’s. Whatever you have said is also prevalent in Africa and South America. The rampant and violent conversion of the people in those continents are a documented evidence that Christianity or Hinduism has got nothing to do with the practices mentioned. I would like to state that any bad practices are being weeded out from our society and we dont need the pagan Church to teach us anything. The vatican is against most progressive practices (Abortion of Children for medical causes, Genetic research etc….) and has been documented to have been a highly casteist in many ways and the christian priests have been involved in everything from genocide in erstwhile Yogoslavia to child abuse and mass suicide and espionage in many countries. I would also like to point out that your nose poking in our matters is unwanted. Please try and alleviate the abject misery faced by your fellow christians who stay in a society marred by social and economic inequality (the un-touchability of the modern era). In UK the Royals are the head of the church, protestants and catholics are each others throats. Please wash your own dirty linen before you try and propagate your false faith which gives false hopes and worships a false God. Thanks and hope this would permanently shut you up.

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