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Hindu Extremists Assault New Christian Leader
Doctor had given legal help to believers beaten in Balaghat, Madhya Pradesh.

3/3/08 BALAGHAT, India (Compass Direct News) – Following a Hindu extremist attack on five Christians meeting in a home here on February 22, the Madhya Pradesh town of Balaghat witnessed another assault last Wednesday (February 27) when the newly elected president of the Balaghat Christian Association was beaten for providing legal help to the previous victims.

Members of the Hindu extremist Bajrang Dal allegedly targeted Dr. Robin Singh, a medical doctor and Christian leader, because he had provided legal and administrative help to Tom George, Sunil Lal and others who had been dragged from a Lent meeting and beaten with bamboo poles, sticks, rods and other weapons.

The attack on Dr. Singh appeared to be calculated to give him nonvisible internal injuries so that a stronger police case may not be formed against them, as the 10 to 12 Hindu extremists did not use any sharp weapons. They struck him with their fists and wooden sticks, as well as kicked him, to deftly give him internal injuries.

“They did not use any weapons this time for if injuries were visible, an attempt to murder case could have been registered against them,” Dr. Singh told Compass. “I was startled and did not know what was going on. It was so sudden and I was so in shock that I could not even register the faces of the attackers properly.”

As president of the Balaghat Christian Association, Dr. Singh is active in representing Christian concerns before the local administration.

The attack contrasted sharply with the February 22 assault on George, Lal, Vijay Patle, Aman Sri Nag and a woman named Leela Patle. Lal and George sustained severe internal injuries but we also left bruised and bleeding, with Lal suffering wounds on his head, ears, cheeks, shoulders, hands, stomach, knees and left leg. (See Compass Direct News, “Hindu Extremists Attack Christians in Madhya Pradesh, India,” February 25).

The Hindu extremists reportedly arrived in cars at 9:30 p.m. at the clinic, which they vandalized.

“The Bajrang Dal people completely broke the front portion of his clinic, destroying the glass, the reception area and all the medicines that were inside,” pastor Jagjit Singh from Creative Growth Ministries, Balaghat, told Compass.

Pastor Singh added that local police had done nothing so far, though a case has been filed against the assailants.

“No arrests have been made by the police even in the previous case,” he said. “The attackers are roaming free, and the Christian community is intimidated by all this.”

Dr. Singh appeared weak from the manner in which he spoke to Compass, and he reportedly has offered to resign from his post as president of the Balaghat Christian Association as the incident has left him fearful. Local Christian leaders are urging him to continue as the president.

Christian leaders of Balaghat, along with state and national leaders, are considering expressing their concerns over the growing violence on the Christian community in Madhya Pradesh to the state’s chief minister, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, and Gov. Balram Jakhar.