Thursday, June 2, 2005
By BosNewsLife News Center
BHUBANESWAR, INDIA (BosNewsLife)-- One of India's most influential Hindu groups confirmed Wednesday, June 1, it will train thousands of youngsters to fight Christian missionaries and distribute weapons.
A source within the Viswa Hindu Parishad (VHP), or World Hindu Council, told the BosNewsLife Orissa Bureau that "over 2,000 youth" would be trained to combat the missionaries within the next two years.
The VHP and its partner Bajrang Dal also decided to organise massive 'Trishul Diskha'or Trident Distribution parties at Keonjhar districts in Orissa this month "as Missionaries are very active in this area," according to a statement received by BosNewsLife.
In addittion conversion of Christians back to Hinduism will also be done in "various border disticts of Orissa" where Christian Missionaries have been preaching the Gospel, the VHP said.
The announcement came shortly after VHP officials met Dara Singh the main convicted killer of Australian missionary Graham Staines and his two sons six years ago. VHP officials met him at Baripada Circle Jail in Orissa "to express support for him," news reports said.
It comes amid growing tension in the tense state where hunderds of uniformed Hindu militants carrying swords and tridents marched through the streets this week of Jaypupur town, in the tribal dominated Distict Koraput in Orissa, and Talchel town.
Various church agencies and independent organizations have recorded hundreds of attacks this year against Christians in the tense state and elsewhere in India. There are about 24 million Christians in India, just over 2 percent of India's total 1.1 billion population, according church estimates. (Satya Sundar Mishra as BosNewsLife India Reporter based in Orissa. Mishra, 26, is a Development Journalist of Orissa working on social and religious issues that are not yet on the radar screen of media and politicians. He has been working for a variety of key publications and is currently also active as Sub-editor and Senior Reporter with Odisha Bhaskar, a regional daily newspaper. He can be reached via e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org ).