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Hindu radicals suspected in Indian priest's stabbing death

Fr Job Chittilappilly, a Catholic priest in the Kerela state of southern India, was stabbed to death on Saturday by unknown assailants at his parish in Thururhiparambu.

The 71-year-old priest was reportedly saying the Rosary on his veranda, prior to celebrating Mass, when he was killed. His attackers apparently caught him unawares, stabbing him from behind. No arrests have been made in connection with the slaying.

"It was not a robbery attempt. The gold chain on his body was untouched," Bishop James Pazhayattil of Irinjalakuda told CWN. Asked for a possible motive for the crime, Bishop Pazhayattil disclosed that Father Chittilappilly had been threatened by Hindu activists after a Hindu many, having attended a prayer service in the Catholic parish, decided to remove Hindu idols from his home.

Cardinal Varkey Vithayantil, the head of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, led mourners at a funeral on Sunday, August 29.

Hindu radicals suspected in Indian priest's stabbing death (Catholic World News 30/8/04)

New attack against Catholics in Orissa ( 30/8/04)
Goa: Hindu holy sites profaned (Missionary Service News Agency 30/8/04)

31 Aug 2004