Additional police personnel were deployed in five villages of Kondagaon district in Chhattisgarh following allegations that mobs attacked members of at least 14 families and ransacked their houses in Kakdabeda, Silati and Singanpur villages.
The alleged violence took place over Wednesday and Thursday, and several people on Thursday said they fear another round of attack on Friday. The attack, and vandalism, occurred allegedly after members of some families in these villages refused to join in a ‘bhandara’ organised on Wednesday, the Chhattisgarh Christian Forum has alleged. The organisation has demanded a high-level probe.
Kondagaon Collector Pushpendra Meena denied that the incident had a religious angle.
However, according to Chhattisgarh Christian Forum director Arun Pannalal, Christian families were being threatened by some tribal residents of villages in Kakadabeda and other parts of Bastar. “Christians are being persecuted,” he alleged.
“On September 22, a bhandara was organised and despite Covid-19, a gathering of around 2,000 people came to the house of one of Christian family and harassed them. We have informed the police about a possible attack on Friday, but no one is taking it seriously. We demand immediate registration of FIR and a high-level inquiry by a retired judge of the High Court or district court,” Pannalal said.
Bastar Division IG P Sundarraj said that police would take necessary action to maintain peace and order. He said forces had been deployed in Karkabeda, Singhanpuri, Tiliyabeda , Silati and Jondrabeda villages of Kondagaon following tension in the area.
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