Orissa, Hindu fundamentalists destroy church under construction
by Nirmala Carvalho

A mob of 150 armed people ransacked the place of worship in Bodoguda. Already last year 8 Christians had been wounded in an assault in the same village. Sajan K George (Global Council of Indian Christians): "Instead of investigating the perpetrators, the police threaten those who report the crime".

Mumbai (AsiaNews) - In Orissa, a crowd of Hindu extremists attacked a church under construction in an area that has long been marked by serious violence against Christians.

Father Purushottam Nayak, a priest of the diocese of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar, told AsiaNews: “On May 16, about 150 armed people demolished a church under construction in the village of Bodoguda, in the Koraput district. In the village 12 Christian tribal families who live with 60 Hindu families are victims of anger, jealousy and revenge only for their faith”.

Debo Bhoi, a member of the local Christian community, together with pastors Ayub Khora, Jitendra Khosla, Sudhakar Khosla, filed a complaint with the Koraput police station demanding compensation. This persecution has been going on for four years now, but investigations into these complaints are being carried out only formally, because the authorities are Hindu. And the lack of action against the perpetrators of attacks against Christians only encourages new ones.

Sajan K George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (Gcic), comments to AsiaNews: "This new attack against the Christians of the village of Bodogua is not spontaneous. The crowd was armed. Last year 8 Christians including one elderly person had been brutally assaulted by a group of Hindu extremists: on 21 July 2020 they entered the house of 75-year-old Chachiri Muduli, which was hosting seven Christians whose homes had been destroyed by the fanatics themselves. Not only did they beat them mercilessly, but also ransacked that building ".

“The Global Council of Indian Christians - continues Sajan K George - strongly condemns violence and intimidation in this village. Even in the previous incident, the Christians filed a complaint with the police: not only were there no actions against the perpetrators, but the administration threatened the Christians who had filed them. This failure strengthens extremists who gain political space for their attacks on vulnerable Christian minorities. Alongside a question of order, there is a serious problem that affects religious freedom”.