The Washington Times - December 20, 2007, 07:25PM
Indian Ambassador Ronen Sen.

Olivia.jpg \ \ Granted, it was a bit odd to be singing Christmas carols next to a statue of Ganesh, the elephant god, but what was a bit stranger was the lack of mention of the plight of Indian Christians back in the motherland. Christians constitute only a small amount — 2-4 percent — of India‘s population but rarely does a week go by when I don’t receive emails on persecution of Christians there. \ \ \ Most come from Sajan George, head of the Global Council of Indian Christians in Bangalore, who has documented 500 attacks in 23 months. His group “has drawn attention to repeated attacks on churches, disruption of worship services and other forms of harassment induldged in by miscreants obsessed with religious hatred,” he wrote Dec. 8. “Books and literature are seized and put to fire. Prayer halls are ransackd. These incidents have been happening in various parts of the country and the culprits invariably are [Hindu] religious fanatics.”\


Olivia Duin, daughter of blogger Julia Duin, nestles underneath a statue and painting at the home of Indian Ambassador Ronen Sen. (Photo by Julia Duin)\
\ \ \ \ Moreover, according to the Dalit Freedom Network, India’s government is denying benefits to Christian Dalits or “untouchables,” as they used to be called. I was in India a year ago reporting on the female feticide issue [see part 1 here] and while there, got an update on the truly grim conditions there for non-Hindus. Indian Christians have been persecuted for years but it was not until Australian missionary Graham Staines was burnt to death — along with his two sons — in January 1999 in Orissa by a Hindu gang, that the rest of the world noticed. \ \ \ It sure would have livened up that embassy party had someone there had the guts to mention such unpleasantries.\ \ \ Julia Duin, assistant national editor/religion, The Washington Times