Police take into custody almost everyone in today’s big rally in the capital. Protesters took to the streets demanding respect for their human and constitutional rights.
Delhi (AsiaNews) - More than 4,000 protestors marched through the streets of India's capital today to call for the Union Government of India to break its silence on violence against Christians across the country have been arrested by the police.
The rally, called "Stop Violence On Christians", was organised after two recently televised attacks on Christians and an increase of anti-Christian incidents in the first few months of 2007.
The rally started at 10am at Jantar Mantar near the Parliament in New Delhi. Rally organisers had expected 2,000 people, but attendance was estimated at 5,000. Speeches demanded human dignity and constitutional rights for the Christian community and other repressed minorities. Minorities are facing harassment from Hindutva fundamentalists and, in many cases, local government officials.
The Station House Officer, Parliament Street Police Station, confirmed he had "arrested" approximately 4,000 people at 1:05pm and released them at 2:10pm.
"This was the first time since November 1997 that such large numbers of Christians have been arrested in the Parliament Street Police Station. It was incredible to see Catholic nuns, Protestant pastors, civil society activists and more singing Christian songs of liberation within the police station," said John Dayal, Secretary General, All India Christian Council, and President, All India Catholic Union.