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The CSF Protest March from St. Peter’s Church to Mount Mary’s, Bandra

April 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Campaigns, National

Orissa an International Shame
We reiterate our Demand – Imposition of President’s rule
Prime Minister should visit Orissa & allow Relief work
Ban Bajrang Dal – Christian Blood should not be Spilled for Political Expediency
There seems to be no respite from the Saffron Brigade for Christians in Orissa and even worse, the communal violence spreads to other several other states. To send out an SOS to the government, hundreds of Oriya Christians – in the city and those, who have fled the state marched, while praying for communal harmony. The prayer march started from the St.Peter’s Church on Hill Road, Bandra (W) at 4pm, and culminated at Mount Mary’s Shrine at around 6 pm. These Orissa Christians were accompanied by an enactment of the Roman soldiers flogging Jesus, as an eye-opener to the Government that even today, Christians are being attacked, brutally killed and their property destroyed in modern India. The flogging enactment is to serve as a reminder that even after over 2000 years, the persecution of the Christians – their agony, anguish & genocide – continues & the Jesus is their only solace.

The march was organised by the Indian Christian Voice and The Catholic Secular Forum (CSF), who reiterated their demands – WE REITERATE OUR DEMAND FOR DISMISSAL OF THE ORISSA GOVERNMENT AND IMPOSITION OF PRESIDENT’S RULE IN THE STATE. WE ALSO CALL FOR A BAN ON THE BAJRANG DAL AND RELATED MOB TERROR OUTFITS IMMEDIATELY for attacks that are unconstitutional, threatening the secular fabric of the country. The State of India has abdicated its responsibility and duty to protect Indian Christians, by not taking the state governments to task & failing to protect the life and personal liberty of Indian citizens. The Government of India has failed to ensure freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion – the very rights enshrined in the Constitution of the country (Articles 21 & 25) and in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR Articles 18 & 27) to which the Government of India is a party.

We call for immediate provision of relief and adequate compensation to the victims as per ICCPR Article 2.3.1 to those Internally Displaced Persons, according to international conventions. There must also be independent fast track courts constituted to try the culprits and enforce rule of law immediately, besides, the following demands, which must be seriously considered:

Foreign funding to such Hindu NGOs needs to be stopped and travel advisories need to be issued to tourists not to come to these states.
Order the CBI to investigate into all aspects of the anti Christian violence in various states & into internal business-houses funding the hate-campaign of the Saffron Brigade.
Immediately take into preventative custody the culprits, after suspending police & government officials for gross dereliction of duty & joining in the ethnic cleansing.
Hand over especially, Kandhamal district to the Indian Army & allow Christian NGOs to do relief work in Orissa.
Trace the thousands of Christians missing, (abducted, injured or feared dead) or believed to be hiding in the forests.
Grant Scheduled Status to Dalit Christians and reservations to Christians, as provided to Muslims, to get them economically uplifted from their poor state as per NSSO survey.
Grant compensation to the churches & residences of priests / house-churches, etc. for losses incurred, which the government is not presently doing, since it is not felt to be politically correct.
Improve state of relief camps and jails, where thousands of Christians are languishing & which have inhuman living conditions, resembling Nazi concentration camps.
Constitute an Enquiry under the Commission of Inquiry Act & expand the terms of reference of the state enquiries instituted to fix responsibility and culpability on government servants & also on guilty politicians.
Provide adequate security to Christian religious places and institutions, as attacks are expected in the run-up to the elections & the fires of communalism are to flare-up. Active Christian NGO leaders need to be included by the Government in discussions pertaining to the community.
We also appeal to you to highlight the following recommendations we make to the Govt of India:

Communalism is to be treated as a crime against the state, like terrorism and made a non-bailable offence. Mob terror is equal, if not worse than bomb terror.
Enactment of legislation like Prevention of Atrocities on SC/ST Act, to protect minorities, from the brute force of the majority.
Moving Law & Order from the State list to the Concurrent list, for the union government can intervene, without flimsy excuses.
Permitting an Independent Enquiry by International Human Rights Organizations or an Independent Supreme Court Judge into the anti-Christian attacks, within a time-frame.


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