Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa has ordered an enquiry into attacks on seven churches. BSY is scheduled to visit Mangalore and Udupi, where churches were vandalised. Suspected Bajrang Dal activists vandalized seven churches and a house iprotesting alleged conversions of Hindus to Christianity. Some preachers and parishioners were assaulted and church property damaged in the attacks. The police in the three districts are yet to arrest anyone.
Bandh was declared in Mangalore soon after. Most shopkeepers and private bus operators in Mangalore stopped work.
The Hindutva groups say these churches indulge in forced conversions. The Christian groups are quick to point out that the attacks started after the BJP came to power three months back.
In Dakshina Kannada district, the activists targeted the Adoration Monastery just off the Milagres Church on Falnir Road. The 10-member group barged into the prayer hall and damaged the tabernacle, where the holy Eucharist is kept.
Later, Christians gathered in large numbers in front of the Milagres Hall to protest against the series of attacks. The day-long stand off between the protesters and the police resulted in violence. Protesters hurled stones at the police who lathicharged them in return. Police burst teargas shells to disperse the angry youth. Some of the protesters took shelter in the Milagres Church Hall premises to escape the mob fury. Prohibitory orders have been imposed in the area up to 8 am on Wednesday, Sep 17.