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Maharashtra: Christian Gathering Attacked Ahead of Christmas, 12 Injured
Wednesday, December 26, 2018, 14:09 (IST)
A Christian gathering was attacked ahead of Christmas on Sunday, Dec. 23, in a village in Maharashtra's Kolhapur district.
A attackers of about 15 to 20 people barged into the New Life Church in Kowad village and attacked the gathering of about 40 people who were offering prayers on Sunday afternoon.
The attackers with covered faces were carrying knives, empty beer bottles, swords and iron rods. More than 10 people were injured in the attack.
One of the victims named Tanaji Patil said that the attackers also vandalized vehicles in the village.
The Opposition has alleged that there is room to doubt the ruling government's support for the attack.
Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) spokesperson Nawab Malik said, "The cops are claiming the involvement of right wing."
"In Dang (Gujarat) and Orissa, similar attacks took place before Christmas. The attack is nothing but the outcome of BJP's anti-Christian mentality. The book 'Bunch of Thoughts' by MS Golwalkar, who was the second Sarsanghchalak of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), says Christians and Muslims are a threat to the nation. Such attacks are only taking place where the BJP is in power. So, there is a scope to believe that such attackers have support from the government," Malik added.
Police suspects the attackers fled towards Karnataka border.
"We are suspecting involvement of radical groups of Belgaum in Karnataka. Some suspects are identified and they soon will be arrested. The police have made several teams to investigate the case, which involves the crime branch. We are taking help of the Karnataka Police as well," Kolhapur's Superintendent of Police Abhinav Deshmukh told India Today.
The official said the CCTV footage of the area was also being scanned and expressed hope that the attackers would be nabbed soon.