» 09/30/2008, 00.00
Anti-Christian violence getting worse
Since 24 August when the pogrom began 59 Christians have been killed, 18,000 injured, 177 churches destroyed or damaged, 4,300 homes set on fire, and 13 schools and colleges laid waste.
Orissa: four months after anti-Christian pogroms the situation remains bleak
Conditions in refugee camps and in the forests are pitiful. There are no guarantees that violence will not flare up again once federal police units leave the area. As new groups emerge pledging more violence against Christians, the justice system is failing to perform its tasks. And mass media are fuelling tensions by their one-sided, partisan coverage. John Dayal, president of the All India Christian Council and the United Christian Forum for Human Rights, gives a run-down on the situation.
No school for Christian children in Orissa
Driven far from home, school-age children have practically lost an entire school year as the current one comes to end shortly. Orissa authorities are moving refugees to temporary camps near their home villages, but moving back home is still not yet in the cards. Discrimination and other intimidatory acts continue. As the April elections come closer, tensions is rising.
Hindu radical kills Christian who had testified in court in a Kandhamal pogrom-related case
Michael Digal testified in court in a case connected with the 2008 anti-Christian violence. After purging his sentence, a fundamentalist enticed the victim into a trap and killed him. The Global Council of India Christians calls on the authorities to protect pogrom witnesses.
Orissa: first conviction in anti-Christian riots case
Nine months after the first attacks in Kandhamal district, a court issues a first conviction for one of the people who instigated the violence. Father Chellan, who was among the victims of Hindu fanaticism, wants the authorities to provide witnesses with full protection because they are still under constant threat.
Christian leaders: Orissa government still ignores pogrom victims
Archbishop Cheenath and the president of Orissa Minority Forum demand sentences for perpetrators, compensation for the victims and peace initiatives. The movement creates a youth wing to address community needs. To date there are still 3500 houses to rebuild.
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