Posted by: becketfund | November 24, 2006

Kazakhstan: Authorities Begin Destruction of Hare Krishna Commune

Forum 18 reports that on November 21, despite their promises that no action would be taken before a state commission could investigate the situation, Kazakh authorities evicted residents of the Sri Vrindavan Dham Hare Krishna commune near the southern city of Almaty (map) and demolished a quarter of the homes.  The government has long sought to reclaim the land used by the Krishna, and the community fears that the remaining homes and the Krishna temple will also be destroyed.  Human rights activists who witnessed the demolition pointed out that neighboring homes belonging to non-Krishna were spared, despite their title deeds having the same status.  Officials destroyed or confiscated personal property, and demolished some houses with the residents still inside.  Houses that were not destroyed had their windows smashed, making them virtually uninhabitable, as current temperatures in the area drop to below freezing at night.

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