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The “re-awakening” festival attracts thousands of Hindus to the Gujurat state in India , and Hindu homes are being marked with a yellow ribbon so they are not attacked. Christians are extremely vulnerable to attack during this festival, and the government has done nothing to protect the Christians against attacks.

Christians Urged to Pray Ahead of Major Hindu Event in India

By Audrey Barrick

Christian Post (02/02/06)

To read the full story, click here: Christians Urged to Pray Ahead of Major Hindu Event

Christians around the world are being called to pray for fellow believers in India where there is concern over a major Hindu extremist gathering that could result in violence against tribal Christians.

The call from Dr. K.P. Yohannan, president and founder of Gospel for Asia, comes ahead of the Shabri Kumbh festival which reportedly could attract a half-million Hindus to India ’s Gujurat state on Feb. 11-13. In preparation for the “re-awakening” festival, Hindu homes are being marked with yellow flags, according to Yohannan, “leaving the small population of Christians extremely vulnerable to attack – as many already have been.”

Rights groups fear the religious gathering could be a similar replay of the December 1998 rally where thousands of Hindu extremists shouted anti-Christian slogans and attacked Christian places of worship and other buildings owned by or related to Christians and Muslims.

According to Agence France Presse, activists on Sunday called on the Indian government to ban the festival.

The latest world report by Human Rights Watch, however, stated that “the Indian government has failed to contain violent religious extremism and to prosecute those who instigate or participate in religious violence. Such failures only reinforce communal resentments.”

The lack of swift action by the government to counter societal attacks against religious minorities was also highlighted by the U.S. State Department’s 2005 International Religious Freedom Report, although it noted improvement in the status of religious freedom.

Shabnam Hashmi of Act Now for Harmony and Democracy said around 500,000 tribals and Hindu activists are planned to be mobilized in the forests of Dangs district.

Festival organizers are “launching a major campaign against Christians,” she said.

To read the full story, click here: Christians Urged to Pray Ahead of Hindu Event