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An Indian MP Condemns persecution of Christians

By James Varghese

8/30/07 INDIA (ANS) — Dr. H.T Sangliana, an Indian MP (Member of Parliament) and former Police Commissioner of Bangalore City , has condemned the recent attacks and persecution on Christians that have taken place in the state of Karnataka in the past few months.

He was speaking in a Press conference he called on Monday, August 27th in Bangalore . He explained to ANS that being a member of the Bharatiya Janatha Party (BJP, which traditionally dislikes Christianity and their activities, he wanted to help the Christians who are trapped in the attacks from Hindu radicals.

He said that he had called the press conference to discuss the recent attacks on Christians and call for a halt for the “injustice” that is happening to them.

“The Christians, well known for their peace loving and hospitable nature and also known also for freely and endlessly rendering welfare activities in the field of health care and education to the poor and needy people regardless of caste, creed or religion, have been most unfortunately oppressed by self appointed fundamentalists from majority community thereby forcing them to go to the streets searching for fellow citizens who could not come forward to halt these atrocities,” he said.

The MP blamed the Home Minister who is in the authority, who has the power, which he says to activate the police force to rush for help to this harassed Christians. He complained that the Home Minister has not done anything even when representations were made to him and called this “negligence” on the part of this man.

Speaking about the recent attacks on Christians he said, “During the past 2 and half years, unlike in the past, there have been as many as 75 grave incidents wherein peaceful gathering of Christians, solemnly worshipping in their churches or homes were trespassed into and grievously assaulted the worshippers and driven them away by using force alleging that they were indulging in conversion which were absolutely false, baseless and figment of their imaginary.”

He said that the these Hindu radicals have become so fearless that they even inform the T.V Channels in advance that there will be an incident happening in so and so place and in so and so time.

He also said “Most unfortunately, in most of the places where such incidents took place, police, instead of investigating and finding out the truth as to who is at fault, would side with the attackers and subject the Christians to unlawful detention and unjustified arrest wantonly believing in the version of the false and tutored witnesses who were planted and produced before them, the police.”

He even stated that “Police have become so bias that they would even question the Christians as to whether permissions have been obtained for worshipping or conducting prayers in churches or at private homes, deliberately trying to confuse them, knowing very well that the Constitution of India or any law in that matter does not require anybody including Hindus, Muslims, Christians and so on to obtain prior permission to pray to or worship their god in their own homes or at any other place.” He said there is freedom to express one’s own religion in India and none can stop it.

Speaking on the privacy of religion He said, “The fact, all over the world remains that every religion is open to test, study and trial or examination. Any body can reject or accept any religion according to his/ her freewill. As such conversion or change of religion from one to another does not violate anybody’s right as it takes place every day all over the world. No one and no force can stop this”.

At the end he concluded by questioning the Home Minister of the state to take proper action. His Question to the Home Minister was “Will the Home minister at least now take necessary steps and stop rampant harassment on Christians in the state before the situation goes out of hand?”