The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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RSS bares fangs on attack

New Delhi, Jan. 17: The RSS’ central leadership today declared the organisation had nothing to do with the January 13 attack on US Protestant missionary Joseph Cooper in Kilimanoor, Kerala, but refused to condemn the incident.

The RSS statement, issued by the outfit’s joint general-secretary Madan Das Devi, obliquely justified the assault.

The operative part of the statement, released by the Sangh’s media centre, said: “I will refrain from giving the details of the undesirable proselytising activities of some of the Christian churches as also the dubious antecedents and the character of the family that was targetted at Kilimanoor.”

“It is for the journalists to find out why the people at that place got so agitated and angered that they took the law into their hands,” the statement said.

The Sangh Parivar had used the same line of argument to explain away the communal violence that engulfed Gujarat after the Godhra train attack last year.

The Sangh’s opinion was the riots were a “spontaneous reaction” for an “outrage” committed on Hindus.

The RSS general secretary reminded the Christian community that an atmosphere of mutual understanding between them and the Hindus could be created because of a “continuous dialogue between the RSS and the leaders of the Christian clergy and the eminent men of the laity”.

He appealed to missionaries not to “vitiate this atmosphere of goodwill by their nefarious proselytising endeavours and invite the wrath of the common man”.

The RSS leader blamed a “section of the media” for dragging in his organisation’s name whenever Christian missionaries were attacked — like when nuns were gangraped in Jhabua, Madhya Pradesh, Graham Staines was murdered in Orissa, and bomb blasts occurred in churches in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.

“Even though the real culprits in those criminal acts were caught, the media did not utter a word of regret for spreading an absolutely false story,” Devi said.

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