ibnlive » India

Sep 02, 2008 at 05:50pm IST

OrissaArchbishop seeks damages for Christains

New Delhi: The Archbishop of Cuttack has approached the Supreme Court seeking inquiry into the compensation for the Kandhamal riot victims.

The Archbishop also sought an inquiry into the deployment of the RAF in the affected villages.

Following this, the Central Government Counsel assured the court that he will talk to the Union Home Secretary on the steps that could be taken to move the paramilitary forces to the affected villages.

The matter is posted for hearing on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Shivraj Patil is going to Kandhamal on Wednesday to visit the riot-hit areas.

The trouble started in the state on August 23 when key VHP leader Swami Laxmananand Saraswati and four of his followers were shot dead at his Jalspeta ashram following a suspected Naxal attack.

Several churches were burnt and rail and road traffic impacted during a VHP-sponsored statewide shutdown to protest the killing.

Saraswati was leading a campaign against cow slaughter and religious conversion in the communally sensitive district - which with a population of around 6,00,000, including 1,50,000 Christians, has witnessed numerous clashes between Hindus and Christians in the past.

Hindu groups in the state blamed the Church for the crime and alleged that Christians killed Saraswati because he was opposing religious conversion. Christian organisations have denied these allegations.

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