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Indian Bishops condemn attack on Mother Teresa's missionaries

The Bishop's Conference of India has firmly condemned the recent attacks on sisters of Mother Teresa's Missionaries of Charity congregation at the hands of Hindu fundamentalists in the Indian state of Kerala.

"We forcefully condemn the two attacks against the Missionaries of Charity which occurred yesterday (Sunday) in Kerala. We are very worried by the recrudescence of Hindu fundamentalist groups seeking political space," said Father Babu Joseph Karakombil, the conference spokesman to the Fides News Service.

"But we have received the solidarity of the institutions, civil organisations and numerous Hindu, Muslim and Buddhist religious groups," he stressed.

Zenit reports that the attacks took place in the town of Pantheerankave, north of Cochin in the state of Kerala, southern India. The town is a shanty-town inhabited by native Indians without caste.

The first incident occurred at midday when a group of the missionary sisters visited the town to make the usual distribution of food. Some families were asking the missionaries for help when a group of five individuals attacked their car with bars and chains. During the attack they repeated slogans of Hindu nationalist ideology.

Two sisters and the driver were wounded.

Responding to the incident, another group of missionaries arrived and they were also attacked by 30 individuals. The mother superior was struck on the head, and another sister and two brothers were wounded.

The fundamentalists tried to make the nuns get out of their vehicle, but did not succeed. All the wounded were hospitalised, and the Fides news service reports that one of the nuns remained seriously ill.

Indian Bishops Condemn Attack on Mother Teresa's Missionaries (Zenit 27/9/04)

Attack on Mother Teresa's workers condemned (Ecumenical News International 28/9/04)
Indian bishops condemn attacks against Missionaries of Charity (Catholic News Agency 28/9/04)
India's Catholics undeterred by assaults (Catholic World News 28/9/04)
Catholic Bishops Conference of India

30 Sep 2004