A Dalit Christian Arrested in Orissa on charge of Selling Dalit Literature. Reported by Madhu Chandra


New Delhi: November 5, 2006. Amit Kumar Raul, a Dalit Christian, has been arrested in Orissa on October 26, 2006, under G. Udayagiri police station with charges of selling "Oh You Hindu Awake" written by R. K. Chetterjee, published by Dalit Forum Journal, Kolkotta. Sources told the All India Christian Council that Mr. Raul was selling R. K. Chattarji`s book along with some other Christian literature in a three-day "PEACE FESTIVAL 2006" rally at G. Udayagiri organized by some Christians from Cuttak, Orissa. Franklin Nayak, a Christian advocate, reported to Christian Council, "Hindu Jagran Samukhya (HJS) arrested Mr. Raul under IPC section 153A for provoking enmity between different religions." Dr. John Dayal, President of the All India Catholic Union and Secretary General of the Christian Council condemned HJS`s mischief to harass minority Dalit Christians in the state of Orissa. Dr. Dayal said, "If Mr. Raul could be arrested with the charges of provoking enmity between different religions, then L. K. Advani, Arun Shouries and many other members of Sangh Parivar can be arrested under same section of IPC for provocative speeches and writings against minorities and Dalits." According to the latest reports received by the Christian Council, Mr. Raul has been imprisoned in G. Udayagiri jail. Mr. P. Das of Press Trust of India and Christian Council leaders of Orissa state applied for bail for Mr. Raul. Like Mr. Raul, the religious minorities and the oppressed Dalit majorities are at the hands of upper caste and Hindutva forces in the state of Orissa. The All India Christian Council appeals to all right thinking citizens of India to condemn such crimes and to urge the release of Mr. Raul immediately. The Indian People`s Tribunal reported on October 4, 2006, that the present Hindutva sponsored government has harassed the members of minority religions in the state under Orissa Freedom of Religion Act, 1967. Therefore, the Indian People`s Tribunal has appealed to the state government to repeal the bill.

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nazirbhattipcc@aol.com , pakistanchristianpost@yahoo.com