Thursday 30 October 2008

Orissa, India- "Pillar of Church" and candidate for a future bishop dies- thought to be from wounds sustained in tactical anti-Christian violence

(Social Justice South Africa; c.f. UCAN (Catholic) News 29/10/08)

Article by Marc Aupiais

Church representatives have called him a pillar, a martyr, whose blood may help cure the dire hemoraging of the Indian Catholic church, and democracy, and a nun in the area has even noted that he was a candidate to be the next bishop in the area. All of this did not prevent a crowd of Hindu Nationalists from severely beating the man who died having blood clots enter his brain. Father Bernard Digal, who is 47, died yesterday at 8:45 p.m (probably local time).

In India, Christians face what seems to fit the 1950's declaration by the UN General Assembly, of what genocide is to be considered as, so as to allow the punishment of war criminals. At least 59 people have been killed, 50 000 left homeless, as Christians are killed, beaten, have their houses and possessions either burnt or appropriated, and face what a bishops in Orissa's capital- say is an unwillingness by the Indian government to react. This is as International calls for peace in the region were attacked by India's Hindu Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), as against India's sovereignty.

Leaders from all major religions in the region have condemned the violence.

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