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Saturday, September 19, 1998

Missionaries' role in Arunachal draws ire

NAGPUR, SEPT 18: Christian missionaries are hell-bent on turning Arunachal Pradesh into a `Christian state' and unless urgent steps are taken immediately, the situation would spin out of control, warns Balkrishnan, national general secretary of the Vivekanand Kendra.

Speaking about the gravity of the situation while delivering a lecture on `Arunachal ki pukar' organised by the Vivekanand Kendra, Nagpur, Balkrishnan said Christian missionaries, after having successfully converted a majority of the people from the other North-Eastern states have now turned full attention to Arunachal Pradesh.

Talking about the work of the Christian missionaries in the North-East, he said as many as 92 per cent of the people in Mizoram had already taken to Christianity. Christians now formed 87 per cent of Nagaland's population and 72 per cent of Meghalaya. Cent per cent population of the hilly regions of Manipur is already Christian. Hindus have been always been in the majority in Arunachal Pradesh. But slowly themissionaries have managed to turn 30 per cent of the population into Christians. If the present rate of conversions continue, then Arunachal too soon would be a Christian state, he warned.

Blasting the missionaries for their role in the North-East, especially Arunachal, Balkrishnan said they are not just converting people, but also destroying the culture. This has already happened in Nagaland. Arunachal is next in line, he said.

It is only a myth that the problems of Hindus get solved after their conversion to Christianity. In fact they become victims of a new system of oppression. If Christianity was the answer to all woes, why is it that AIDS is most prevalent in Christian-dominated states there? Why does the nightmare of drugs haunt the populace, he asked.

Revealing the sustained efforts of the Christian organisations towards conversions in Arunachal, Balkrishnan said it had put 10,000 missionaries on the job. Compared to this the total number of Hindu missionaries there was not more than 250.

Thechurches in the country have issued circulars to the Christian missionaries to make Arunachal completely Christian by the year 2000 AD. The Hindus are poorly equipped to face the onslaught of Christian zealots, he lamented.

Balkrishnan warned of an international conspiracy hatched by China with the help of the US to grab Arunachal. But first the population has to be converted into Christianity, he said. Arunachal has a 1700 km international border with Nepal and China. Arunachalis greet each other with either `Vande Mataram' or `Jai Hind' which is something unique, he said. But the situation might change if the conspirators have their way, he said.

Insurgency is the biggest problem facing the North-East. Smuggling is another. Myanmar is the biggest training centre for insurgents. So far the government has managed to contain the secession problem, but for how long would it be able to do so in the face of international designs on the country is a point to ponder.

Balkrishnan appealed to the youths andothers in the country to lend a helping hand in saving Arunachal. It is with this motto that the Vivekanand Kendra has decided to form `Arunachal Bandhu Parivar'. The organisation would officially come into existence on September 29. It would work towards stopping Christian conversions in Arunachal and other states. It would hold seminars, exhibitions in various parts of the country to make the people aware of the gravity of the situation where Christian missionaries are active, he informed.

Balkrishnan informed the Vivekanand Kendra has been active in Arunachal for a quarter century now. It has earned the goodwill of the local people there because of its good work in education and social work, he said. Its main mission in the country now is to `save Arunachalis from Christian exploitation', he revealed.

Copyright © 1998 Indian Express Newspapers (Bombay) Ltd.


Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd.

Bank of India


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