How was Swami Laxmanananda killed on August 23, 2008? Demonstratively, when his Ashram was crowded, they were performing Janmastami rites, with weapons that are fit for the Army, with advance warmning, when he was under police protection, and in the name of Christianity. The police promptly gave out the news that he was killed by Naxalites, even though the latter of threat he had received (and which he had enclosed with the FIR) was that he was preventing Hindus from converting to Christianity.
The news did NOT appear in Times of India, Bhubaneswar edition, on August 24, 2008. Laxmanananda had been attacked earlier. Then there had been some riots, Christian leaders and their dummy NGOs had visited the area, held press conferences at Bhubaneswar and Delhi, and had received wide coverage. Even Anupam Bharat, a small Oriya news paper often devoted to Indian culture and Hindu philosophy, brought out a series of articles portraying how Christian ?minorities? were persecuted in Kandhamal district. The last of the series of articles appeared a week ago.
How minor is the Christian community in Kandhamal? During British rule one particular community in undivided Koraput, Kandhamal and Gajapati (earlier a sub-division of Ganjam district) district had been converted to Christianity. This was the same tacit policy of the British for conversion without affecting their main objective of earning money. In fact, the British still trusted Christian converts more than the Hindus, but most of these converts were Catholics. It should be remembered that the British were protestants. This particular was a trader community. British official gazetteers have described them as cunning, prone to crime and exploiters of forest dwellers. They were traders and monopolised sale to absolutely essential commodity like salt, and exploited the tribals through such monopoly. Please recall that when the British took control of any area in India, the first thing they did was to monopolise salt trade. So British officials allotted not only salt, they also gave away prime, plain, fertile, road side land to this Christian community. At the same time, the British trusted them so little that they did not appoint any of them as village rent collector or chieftain. A report of Lutherans available in Orissa Secretariat library admits that the tribals did not convert to Christianity because this had become the religion of their exploiters.
Meanwhile three things have happened. After Independence, when reservation for Scheduled Caste (SC) was introduced, and the Christian converts did not get the benefit, they stopped taking Christian names, and switched over to Hindu names. They went to Church, kept a Cross in the bedroom, but kept a Tulsi (Occimum Sanctum) plant in the front yard and a photo of a Hindu deity on the verandah. So when officials in charge of giving caste certificate visited these houses, they were satisfied that the family was eligible for the benefits of SC. One such person is a retired IAS officer, also MP, who devoted his life to conversion. He too had forsaken his Christian name and had adopted a Hindu name to avail the benefit of reservation. The second thing which has happened is the ingress of rich American Baptists, and most aggressive of them is the Pentecostal group. With their enormous money power, they have been able to convert tribals in Rayagada, Gajapati and Koraput districts. But, they have not been available convert the tribals of Kandhamal because of excessive exploitation by this Christian community and more so because the major tribe in Kandhamal is Kandha, who are aggressive about protecting their religion. Many of the SC Christian persons have also acquired Scheduled Tribe (ST) certificates depriving the benefit to the tribals. The continuing land dispute and the above cheating by this particular Christian community has ensured that tribals of Kandhamal do not get converted to Christianity. It was not Swami Laxmanananda who prevented the tribals for becoming Christians. It is the exploitation, please understand. Laxmanananda was only performing his Hindu dharma. Then why was he killed?
The third thing which has happened is the Forest Conservation Act. This has not reduced devastation of the forests; this has increased exploitation of tribals, because the rent they have to pay to the forest officials has increased. The indebtedness of a tribal has gone up manifold because of the Act as enforced by the Supreme Court through a series of cases under the original Godavarman case, a parallel unknown in world jurisprudence.
Let us rewind to the issue of Graham Steins, who with his two sons were burnt down by irate tribals because of conversion. This had invited the wrath of the whole world. Particularly because the dead included two children. One Dara Singh was found guilty and ordered to be hanged. One can go through the order. There was no evidence that Dara burnt down the vehicle. The Judgment appears to be more tuned to world public opinion. At least one minor was incarcerated for years without guilt. The wife of the deceased missionary was awarded Padmashree ignoring the recommendation of the state government for an eminent classical singer. After the punishment and the award, Christian missionaries have a field day; there is rampant conversion. There has been no economic growth; it is only the money of people who want to convert innocent people to Christianity. If this had happened in USA or Australia, what would have been the view of the prosecutors and judges? They would have asked: ?Why did this fellow take his children in the dead of night to a hostile ground?? Had that father been alive, the prosecutors would have charged him for causing death due to negligent and risky behaviour. That missionary would have faced the same punishment as someone who takes his children to a sea in storm. No, here of course, we have this fall guy called Dara, and he is to be hanged.
Why were the tribals of Mayurbhanj-Keonjhar angry with this Graham? Because he asked the villagers to plough the land during Raja. Raja is a fertility festival. This is when the mother earth is menstruating; so you do not plough, because this is the time for mother earth to heal. The environmental implications should be understood: after the first rains, if the land is ploughed immediately, many flora and fauna will disappear. So this is the rest period. For the tribal of Mayurbhanj, and all educated people of coastal Orissa, this sacrosanct. If land is ploughed during Raja, than there will be no crop. So this father came from Australia and said: ?I am here, nothing will happen, go plough mother earth.? The tribal believed that there will be famine, because mother earth has been raped. That was why that Australian was killed. This is how much I have understood. I have not understood why his wife got Padmashree in place of the classical singer from Orissa.
The murder of Swami Lakshmanananda has been ascribed to intelligence failure. Over the last few years, police has become increasingly powerful. For example, in Cuttack Bhubaneswar police Commissionrate system, the powers under section 107, 198, 109, 110, CrPC have been given to police officers. If the order u/s 110 against Raja Acharya had been passed, then judo coach Biranchi Das would not have been killed. It should be recalled that the police had been found either incapable or too corrupt, to handle these provisions of law, and these powers had been restored to Executive Magistrates.
The Naxalites had arrived two days before the attack on policemen in Daspalla. They stayed in style in a farm house near Daspalla. They bought provisions, plucked lemons from the farm house, and made themselves quite comfortable. On the date of the incident, they sent information to public vehicles. Particularly passenger vehicles, that they should stay back at Charichhak or Banigochha, that is towards Boudh. This particular official came to his headquarters a few minutes before the incident. Then the road was blocked. After the incident, they stayed at the same place when police had moved to Gasma area to search for the looters. The police had no access to information. Because, they are in an independent mode. It is precisely because of this lack of communication with non-police people that they did not know that such a large armed group was attacking a known and revered destination of Swami Lakshmananand ashram.
Why did the Press give such imbalanced publicity to puppets of American colonialism, coming in the garb of Christian leaders, while the murder of the Lakshmananand went unreported? Shame? Shame for being born black? Or for being born Hindu?
Unlike the Padmashree winner Christian missionaries case, the death of Lakshmananand shall disappear from public memory, because no awards will be awarded, no money will flow in.
What the Christians had achieved in Mayurbhanj by hanging Dara and through other means in Koraput/ Gajapati, let us congratulate them now. Now that the Christians have the guns, all Hindus will have to abandon their religion. That is why Lakshmanananda was murdered. How stupid the murder is, because he was not afraid of death, he was an old man, and he did not bother about all the negative things that English (and Anupam Bharat!) press will follow. And let us congratulate the elite Press which capitulates to Christian names and rubbishes anything Hindu. Hinduism was never an aggressive religion. It could not be because, it was eclectic, all-inclusive. If that poor country (USA) with its few rich wish to donate their ill-gotten wealth (earned from stealing the Clarisworks software or going to war) so that there will be no Hindu left, then, they are mistaken.
Hindu activist have to understand: this is not a Muslim problem. This is a Christian problem. Muslim are quite nice people in Orissa.
The murderers of Lakshma-nanand will Never be arrested. Will those Christian Missionaries try to go to a Muslim country and ?save their souls!?