Hindu nationalists oppose quota for tribal Christians
ICC Note: Not content with the fact that underpriveleged Indians who convert to Christianity already lose benefits, Hindu radicals want to remove them from the category of people groups in India who are eligible to receive benefits.
By Vishal Arora
01/29/09 New Delhi, India (Religious Intelligence) – Hindu nationalists in India have launched a campaign to demand removal of affirmative action benefits for those tribal (aborigine) people who have converted to Christianity.
As part of its ‘intellectual’ campaign to rescue tribal ‘purity’ (of culture) from the influence of the Church, the Sangh Parivar (a family of organisations under the leadership of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, India’s most influential Hindu nationalist group) yesterday re-released a book to demand removal of tribal Christians from the Scheduled Tribes category in the Indian Constitution, reported The Hindustan Times.
Communities listed as Scheduled Tribes in the Constitution can avail from the 7.5 per cent seats reserved in government and public sector jobs and educational institutions for them. The tribal communities in India – whose members are originally not Hindus but belong to ethnic faiths – form around nine per cent of India’s population. According to estimates, around 20 per cent of India’s 24-million Christian community is from tribal backgrounds.
A tribal leader from the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Karia Munda, re-released the book, ‘Bees Varsh Ki Kaali Raat’ (A Twenty-Year Black Night) that was originally launched in the late 1960s by Kartik Oraon, a politician from the BJP’s archrival party, the Congress. The book argues that “Christian converts walked away with quota benefits meant for tribals in the first 20 years of Independence (in 1947), despite having ‘abandoned’ tribal practices.” … [Go To Full Story]