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    » 03/15/2014, 00.00

    INDIA

    Orissa, ruling on raped nun "example of collusion between the state and Hindu extremists "

    Nirmala Carvalho

    Sajan George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC ) comments to AsiaNews. Of the nine defendants, the court charged only three, acquitting the other six . "Minimizing this violence violates all constitutional guarantees".

    Mumbai (AsiaNews) - A verdict that clearly shows "the connivance and support of public officials of the deliberate violence by Hindu fundamentalists", says Sajan George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), commenting to AsiaNews on the Cuttack Court judgment on the case of Sister Meena Barwa, raped and humiliated by a dozen people during the pogroms in Kandhamal (Orissa), in 2008.

    Nine men were tried for the violence committed against the woman religious however, the courts convicted only three of them, giving fully acquitting the other six. A tenth person identified by the victim was never arrested. "We are shocked and dismayed by the light  verdict  delivered today by the Cuttack District Sessions Court" - stated Sajan George - "It is really a travesty of justice. The nun was attacked, gang-raped and paraded semi-naked through the streets in Kandhamal district of Odisha which incident had indeed shaken up the conscience of the entire nation. The whole incident was published in almost all the newspapers in the country with very clear details".

    In this sense, says the president of the GCIC, "the court verdict clearly shows the callousness of the prosecution in the horrendous sexual assault, the failure at various levels, including documenting, reporting, investigating, charging and prosecuting the cases, is abundantly clear from the verdict". According to Sajan George the case "clearly indicates an institutional prejudice against the Christian community. Minimizing sexual violence against women is a deliberate dereliction of constitutionally mandated duties and violates constitutional guarantees".

     

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    See also

    07/12/2011 INDIA
    Orissa: raped nun forgives aggressors and recounts her sufferings
    Three years after the violence against Christians in Kandhamal, Sr. Meena Barwa says she is a new creature. The sufferings and pains of those years were a path to Christ. The trial against the rapists and their condemnation is essential to give justice to all victims of the pogroms.

    14/06/2010 INDIA
    Hindu extremist who raped Sister Meena arrested
    Pandit Bishimajhi is blamed for serious anti-Christian violence in Orissa in August 2008, which included beating people and setting buildings on fire. A member of a Hindu nationalist party, he was a wanted man for many months but was able to elude and mock police. His arrest might be a sign that justice will finally be done in Orissa.

    07/01/2009 INDIA
    Supreme Court tells Orissa to ensure Christians’ safety
    The ruling, issued last Sunday, criticises the authorities’ slowness in responding early to the violence. Also on Sunday the nun raped in K. Nuagaon on 25 August identified two of her assailants.

    13/11/2008 INDIA
    Indian commission investigating anti-Christian pogrom in Orissa
    A seven-member team begins inquiry in areas where Hindus massacred Christians. They will meet victims, police officials and local administrators. It is still not known whether Sister Meena will take part in the line-up to identify her assailants.

    14/03/2014 INDIA
    Orissa pogrom: three convicted, six acquitted of gang rape of Sister Meena Barwa
    The Cuttack district court issues a controversial ruling. The Servite religious sister was raped by Hindu fundamentalists during the anti-Christian violence of 2008.



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