ibnlive » India

Apr 20, 2009 at 06:13pm IST

Bajrang Dal attack church in Maharashtra town

Savner (Maharashtra): Nearly two dozen activists of the Hindu right-wing organisation Bajrang Dal allegedly attacked and vandalised a church in a Mahrashtra town, police said.

"Nearly two dozen activists, armed with sticks, barged into the Douglas Memorial Church in Savner around 1100 hrs IST when the late Sunday morning prayer service was in progress," investigating officer DG Gavi of Savner Police Station, told IANS shortly after the incident.

As the scared churchgoers - nearly 100 attending the service - dispersed, the Bajrang Dal activists went on a rampage and destroyed several chairs and tables inside the church, Gavi added.

CHURCH ATTACK: The priest of the church has recognised some of the attackers.

The priest of the church, Fr Ramred Paul M Sakhardevkar (53), who recognised some of the attackers, later lodged a complaint with the police, naming some of them including Sonu Bharaiya, Trambak Nanere, Bharadwaj and Dube, according to Gavi.

Savner, with a population of around 35,000, including 1,500 Christians, is located in Nagpur district in eastern Maharashtra.

Gavi said that security has been deployed in the vicinity of the church and police are on the lookout for the culprits who have absconded.

The motive behind the attack is not known, he added.