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Madhya Pradesh Government told to Arrest Members of Group Who Beat Nuns

By James Varghese

10/29/07 INDIA (ANS) — A senior leader in India ’s Congress has demanded that the individuals who recently attacked and injured five nuns be arrested and booked under the country’s National Security Act.

According to a report on Persecution Update India (http://persecution.in), Senior Congress leader and former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Dig Vijay SinghSingh said, “I strongly condemn the attack on the nuns. This is a very unfortunate and regrettable incident. Those involved in the crime should be arrested immediately and (be subject to the penalties of the) National Security Act.”

Accusing the BJP-led (the main Hindu nationalist party) government for a failure to protect minorities, women and children, Persecution Update reported Singh said it was protecting anti-social elements which were involved in disturbing the peace and amity in the State.

“While on the one hand the State Government was inviting investors saying Madhya Pradesh was a peaceful State, on the other hand Bajrang Dal activists (www.hinduunity.org/bajrangdal.html) have sent a message to the world that the atmosphere here was not fit for industrial growth,” Persecution Update reported Singh said.

The five Roman Catholic nuns who were attacked by Hindu radicals belonged to the Franciscan Clarist Congregation in Indore in the North Indian state of Madhya Pradesh.

According to a news release from Salem Voice Ministries News Service (SVM), the nuns were beaten up Oct. 25 while returning from a prayer meeting.

SVM reported that a group of 20 activists belonging to Bajrangdal (the Monkey Brigade group), and workers from Dharma Raksha Samiti (a society for protecting the Hindu religion), beat the nuns with sticks. The Hindu activists accused the nuns of persuading people that they needed to convert to Christianity. SVM reported that Sister Geo of FCC said, “The sisters were dragged and their clothes were torn.”

One nun’s leg was broken and another had to get seven stitches on her head. They were admitted to hospital. The other nuns were also injured.