DAILY CATHOLIC     MONDAY     July 20, 1998     vol. 9, no. 140

from a CATHOLIC perspective

To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO


          NEW DELHI (CWNews.com) -- India's All India Catholic Union (AICU) has urged the federal government to take serious note of Hindu fundamentalists' open threat to carry out massive program "to reconvert" Christians in northeastern India.

          A senior leader of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad-- the World Council of Hindus, or VHP-- last week unveiled the Hindu revivalist group's ambitious plan of "mass conversion of Christians to Hinduism" in the northeast, where three of the seven tiny Indian states have Christian majorities. The threat comes amid Christian complaints of "forced" reconversion of thousands of tribal Christians by Hindu cadre groups in central India.

          Calling for "strict action" against those "provoking communal discord," the Indian lay group reminded Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee that such proclamations threaten "the unity and integrity of the country." The statement expressed regrets that senior leaders of the coalition government "have kept quiet, and have chosen not to denounce [the VHP statement] as inflammatory."

          "The silence of the government and the BJP leadership in the face of the coercive arrogance" implicit in the threat, AICU statement said, "makes it clear that such provocative programs have the covert or overt support of the party in power." The statement urged the government "to wake up to the dangers" of posed by the Hindu zealots "which threaten the social fabric, the peace and the tranquility" in the northeast of India.

Articles provided through Catholic World News Service.
CWN is not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provides this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

July 20, 1998       volume 9, no. 140


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