Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Indian pastor killed; authorities claim drowning

Authorities claim an Indian pastor
died from drowning, not from
being beaten.
Authorities are saying that an Indian pastor who was killed under mysterious circumstances on January 11, in Kandhamal District, Orissa state, died from drowning. The news has sparked the ire of Saul Pradhan’s family and villagers who accuse authorities of having manipulated the investigation to defend two Hindu extremists, reported Asia News and All India Christian Council.

Pradhan’s daughter and other relatives report that his body showed leg fractures and abrasions to the face and chest—clear signs of aggression.

Two of Pradhan’s employers were seen with him the day he died. The two men took part in an anti-Christian pogrom in 2008, during which Pradhan’s house was demolished. Fr. Bijay Kumar Pradhan, vicar of the Archdiocese of Cuttack-Bhubaneshwar, told Asia News that before Pradhan’s murder, the two men had ordered the pastor to convert to Hinduism, threatening serious consequences for a refusal.

In recent days, Sajan George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christian (GCIC), spoke of the danger of the investigation being manipulated and sought the intervention of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

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