Some Christians Expect Backlash After BJP's Defeat

June 15, 2004

Source: Christianity Today

On June 15, 2004 Christianity Today reported, "India's general election was expected to tighten the grip of Hindu nationalists on the world's largest democracy and lead to escalating persecution of religious minorities. Instead, the results, announced in May, are being hailed with headlines reading 'shock and awesome.' Despite pre-election polls predicting a comfortable victory for the incumbents, the secularist Congress Party, long out of favor, clobbered the rightist ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Prime Minister Atal Vajpayee. But Joseph D'Souza, , president of the All India Christian Council (AICC), says religious minorities aren't completely safe yet. He expects a backlash of anti-Christian persecution from Hindu militants in the BJP-ruled states of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Orissa, and Gujarat. Still, he says, Christians can expect more justice at the national level. 'We expect the new government to reign in the [rightist] forces,' D'Souza said. 'The Christians should stay alert and united to carry on God's work.'"