Church attacks: BJP Govt, Sangh Parivar get clean chit

The Justice Somasekhara Commission of Inquiry into a series of attacks on churches in parts of Karnataka in 2008 has given a "clean chit" to the ruling BJP and Sangh Parivar outfits.
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Updated on Jan 28, 2011 04:23 PM IST
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Hindustan Times | By, Bangalore

A judicial commission, constituted to probe church attacks in Karnataka, on Friday gave a clean chit to the BJP and associated organizations and attributed the violence to distribution of derogatory material and issues of religious conversion.

Justice BK Someshekara commission, which submitted the report to Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa, also denied any collusion between the administrative officers and the attackers, as alleged by various factions.

“There is no basis to the apprehension of Christian petitioners that the politicians, BJP, mainstream Sangh Parivar and state government directly or indirectly, are involved in the attacks,” the commission said.

“The attacks are indulged in by misguided fundamentalist miscreants of defined or undefined groups or organizations against Christians and Christianity who have mistakenly presumed that they would be protected by the party in power with their policies at the relevant time,” it added.

The panel, which received 1,500 petitions and examined over 800 people, was of the view that the main reasons for the attack on churches were circulation of literature derogatory to Hindus and issues of conversion of Hindus to Christianity.

The commission was set up following uproar over the attacks in Mangalore, Udupi, Chikamangalur, Kolar, Chikaballapur, Bellary and Davangere districts in September 2008.

It rejected allegations that police and civil administration in the area where churches were vandalised had colluded with the attackers. But the panel was critical of authorities for not treating the Christians protesting the attacks sympathetically.

The commission which gave 21 recommendations, said that a special police station dedicated to deal with religious issues should be constituted in every district.

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