Posted by: becketfund | September 16, 2008

India: Orissa Mob Attacks Police Station

BHUBNESHWAR – A group of 300 to 400 armed attackers stormed a police station, set fire to it, and killed one police officer, the AP reported on September 16. The state’s top police officer, Gopal Chandra Nanda, said that two police vehicles were also set on fire. He refused to reveal whether the attackers were Christian or Hindu. Orissa has been torn by tensions between Christian missionaries and hard-line Hindu groups, who claim that Christian missionaries bribe the poor to convert. Since Hindu mobs began a new wave of attacks on August 24, at least twenty-five people have been killed, and some 20,000 people have been forced to flee their homes. On September 15, Orissa’s Home Secretary Tarun Kanti Mishra announced the state had asked the federal government for an additional 5,400 paramilitary troops to guard the affected areas until the end of October.

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Responses

  1. The immediate provocation for this violence is the murder of a Hindu monk and religious leader of the area by unidentified gunmen on Aug 24. The slain leader ran orphanages and worked against religious conversions.


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