Christians in India have been terrorized by Hindu nationalists for years. Pastors have been beaten, forced to worship Hindu idols and killed by groups of Hindu radicals. Often these attacks and murders go under investigated by a police force that sympathizes with the radicals. RSS is one group in India that would be considered a Hindu nationalist group. Although it does not explicitly persecute Christians, many of its members do at the behest of their leaders.
2/24/2013 India (WND) - Indian Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde says his nation faces an increasing terrorism threat from self-proclaimed “right-wing” Hindu groups, and that’s bad news for Christians here.
In a report on India television network NDTV Shinde said ultra-nationalist Hindu groups have formed camps to train operatives to carry out attacks.
“Groups like RSS are a threat to India,” he said.
That would be Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, which states on its website: “Sangh is not a mere reaction to one or another social or political aberration. It represents a corpus of thought and action firmly rooted in genuine nationalism.”
The group states its movement is a response to colonialism and any anti-nationalist movement in India, including religious movements.
William Stark, Asia analyst for the Christian human-rights group International Christian Concern, says the RSS itself confirms the home minister’s statement that it’s a violent group.
“Attacks are common in India. Hindu radicals, generally linked with the group RSS, attack pastors and other Christians for converting to Christianity,” Stark said.
Stark added that one of the tragedies of the growing terrorist threat is that many of the attacks are covered up by the government.
“Often these attacks go uninvestigated by the police. In most cases the police go through the motions of an investigation, but really don’t want to uncover any evidence,” Stark said.
Animesh Roul, an India-based terrorism analyst who directs the Society for the Study of Peace and Conflict, disputes the home minister’s opinion, claiming RSS isn’t really violent.
“RSS is a right-wing Hindu group, but neither violent nor covert. Again, it’s not transnational in nature, but, yes, over the years it sympathizes with Hindu-related issues elsewhere,” Roul said.
“They do some moral policing and of course raise their voice against any misuse/abuse of Hindu gods or goddesses, in Indian culture abroad,” Roul said.
He said RSS mostly is volunteers working for the idea of a Hindu nation.