India DOOM: Interior Minister Promises A Safe Christmas As 33 Are Killed When A Bus Falls Into River

First the Promise made:

India: Interior Minister promises a safe Christmas

Cardinal Cleemis, the President of CBCI met the Home Minister to ensure safety during the Christmas season.

The Indian Minister of the Interior, Mr Rajnath Singh has promised the Church in India of peaceful Christmas celebrations this year, when a delegation led by Card. Baselios Cleemis president of the Indian Bishops’ Conference (CBCI) met him on Wednesday.

In recent days the Christian minority has been facing attacks from the Hindu fundamentalists who accuse them of forced religious conversions.

Last week in Satna diocese , Madhya Pradesh, 30 seminarians and two priests were detained while they were in a village to perform Christmas carols. The Hindu radicals held them hostage and set a car on fire owned by another priest who had rushed to the police station to get news of the detainees. A couple of days ago in Uttar Pradesh a far-right youth faction linked to chief minister Yogi Adityanath issued a warning to Catholic schools: not to celebrate Christmas because it "leads" to the conversion of children. During the Advent period, again in Uttar Pradesh, seven Pentecostals were arrested on proselytism charges; the judge ordered them to be released on bail, but their judicial case is just beginning.

In a memorandum submitted to the home minister to seek justice for innocent people suffering he has requested that such events do not happen in future and to provide safety for everyone in the country.

Cardinal went to Satna, and collected the testimonies of the Catholics and spoke to the police and civil authorities. The events of Satna, he argues, "threaten the credentials of our democratic system.” He bemoaned that the police remained silent spectators when the Church people were manhandled inside the police station. The seminarians have been conducting non formal education in the village for several years. The attackers were all outsiders, not the villagers, the cardinal explained. “Instead of registering a case against the attackers the police filed a case against a priest for alleged conversion,” he added. He dismissed the conversion charge as “frivolous” and “absolutely baseless.” (AsiaNews) Source

Then the accident:

NEW DELHI (AP) - At least 33 people were killed on Saturday after a passenger bus veered off a bridge and plunged into a river in the western Indian state of Rajasthan, police said. Seven injured passengers were hospitalized in Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan state, 375 kilometers (235 miles) south of New Delhi, said police officer Narain Singh. The speeding bus was trying to overtake another vehicle when it rammed through the bridge railing, said B.L. Soni, another police officer. It fell 20 meters (65 feet) down into the Banas river. The driver was among the dead, the Press Trust of India news agency said. Rescuers have recovered 33 bodies from the river and all on board the bus have been accounted for, said Singh. The victims, who were from various Indian states, were on their way to a nearby Hindu temple in Lalsot, a town in Rajasthan state, for pilgrimage. The bus had picked up passengers from the Sawai Madhopur railroad station when it crashed around 7 a.m., said Singh. Police figures show India has the world's highest road accident death toll, with more than 110,000 people dying each year in crashes. Driver fatigue, negligence, poorly maintained roads and vehicle maintenance are the usual causes of such accidents in the country. Source