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Christmas celebrations draw stepped-up attacks

‘They are against any expression of Christianity’

ICC Note

By Michael Carl

12/24/2009 India (WND)- India’s radical Hindu parties have stepped up their anti-Christian violence in response to the Christmas celebration, according to organizations whose field operations include India.

Compass Direct and International Christian Concern report that elements of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh organization attacked a pastor and his wife in the village of Decarakonda in Nalgonda province recently.

In another attack, radical Hindus claim to have forced 1,700 Christians to reconvert to Hinduism in western Gujarat state.

ICC’s Jonathan Racho says the radical Hindus are against expressions of other religious beliefs, and Christmas intensifies their fear.

“The Hindu radicals who carry out the attacks follow a radical ideology called Hindu Bhata, and according to this ideology, they believe that India belongs only to Hindus. This means that they believe that Christians and [those with] any other religion [have] no place in India,” Racho sai

“Christmas is a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus and it’s a time when festivities among Christians in India are increasing. That’s not welcome by the Hindu radicals and they are against any expression of Christianity in India. That’s why we see an increase in anti-Christian violence in India at Christmas.”

Other attacks that have taken place since the beginning of December include:

· 60 men entered the New Life Fellowship in Kankauli and beat the pastor and his wife.

· A Hindu mob attacked a church service in western Maharashtra state.

· Another Hindu group disrupted a Christmas pageant in Gwalior City in central Madhya Pradesh state.

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