Ban Bajrang Dal, sack Orissa government; demands Muslim body

August 28th, 2008 - 9:31 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 28 (IANS) Expressing anguish over the continued violence against Christians in Orissa, a Muslim organisation Thursday demanded a ban on the Hindu outfit Bajrang Dal for allegedly attacking minority communities.The All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat, an umbrella body of Indian Muslim organisations, said the Bajrang Dal was also involved in the gruesome killing of Australian Graham Staines and his children in 1999.

“In addition to burning and demolishing many houses, churches, orphanages and other Christian properties and even police stations, the Hindutva goons have already killed 20 Christians in an area which has seen saffron violence for years,” it said in a statement issued here.

Orissa has been on the boil since the killing of Swami Lakshmanananda Saraswati, a member of the central advisory committee of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), and four others Saturday evening by suspected Maoist guerrillas at his Jalespata ashram in Kandhamal district.

The killing triggered communal clashes in which at least 11 people have been killed.

Demanding deployment of army to control the situation, the Muslim body said the state government should be removed as they had failed to protect the Christian community from attacks by people connected to the Bajrang Dal.

“The AIMMM urges the central government to ban the Hindutva terrorist organisation Bajrang Dal which plays the central role in such violence,” the statement said.

Meanwhile, the Sacred Heart Cathedral here held an inter-religious prayer service Thursday in memory of those who died in Orissa.

On Friday, the Christian community in Delhi will hold a demonstration in front of the Orissa Bhavan.

The All India Confederation of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes Organizations, the national body of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe government employees, demanded immediate action to check the violence.

“Home Minister Shivraj Patil must act now to stop the VHP sponsored violence over Dalit and tribal Christians before the situation goes out of control,” said Udit Raj, the chairman of the Confederation and also of the Indian Justice Party.

“The Dalit and tribal Christian minority of the state has been living under the shadow of fear from previous attacks,” he said in a statement.

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