Orissa-Hindu Youth recounts tale of Christian Horror

published on December 27, 2007

Communal violence victim recounts tale of horror

Santanu Barad | Berhampur

In a shocking revelation, a victim of the communal violence at Kandhamal that erupted following the attack on Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati, Bhikari Charan Sethi stated that Christians forcibly dragged him to the outskirts of Brahmanigaon, poured diesel on him and set him ablaze.

Bhikari, 17, has been undergoing treatment at the MKCG Medical College since December 25. In his statement, Bhikari said on the fateful day, around seven to eight persons, all Christians, forcibly caught hold of him at Odiya Street around 11-12 pm while he was going to answer the nature’s call at a pond located on the village outskirts. The group was led by one Thomas Naik, who has been involved in the disturbing activities, Bhikari stated.

His desperate call for help went unanswered. Locals spotted him a few hours later and rescued him. He was immediately admitted to MKCG.

Bhikari, son of one Saibani and Dandapani Sethi of Ladigaon near Digapahandi in Ganjam district, had been staying at Brahmanigaon for the last six years and worked as tailor. Bhikari is a student of Class 10 at the Government High School here. His parents were not in the village when the incident happened.

Bhikari stated the Christians were angry as some people of the Hindu community were spearheading a movement against cow slaughter in those areas of Kandhamal district. Bikhari was supporting the Hindu local workers who were trying to protect the cows.

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