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Vandals attack Catholic schools

Assailants smash windows raising fears of renewed anti-Christian violence

Miscreants attack two Catholic schools in Mangalore Miscreants attack two Catholic schools in Mangalore
  • Francis Rodrigues, Mangalore
  • India
  • October 24, 2011
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Two Catholic schools were attacked by vandals in Mangalore yesterday, provoking widespread condemnation.

The unidentified attackers threw stones, bricks and soda bottles at St Theresa’s School managed by the Bethany nuns and at Padua College run by Mangalore diocese.

Sister Rose Celine, secretary of the Bethany Education Society, said three people rode up yesterday morning on a motorcycle and vandalized the school patron’s statue and some windows. They fled after being challenged by security guards, she added.

The nun said police have asked them to show calm and promised to arrest the attackers soon.

The school, opened in 1997, has more than 1,300 students from several faiths.

More than 200 parents visited the school to show their support, while management and the Parent Teachers Association (PTA) yesterday called a joint press conference to condemn the attack.

Nand Kishore, a Hindu and a PTA member, called the incident unfortunate and “highly to be condemned” because the school serves all.

Vandals also yesterday broke stained glass windows in Padua College’s chapel. Principal Father Michael Santhumayor believed the same attackers were behind both incidents.

The college that caters to more than 2,000 students was among the Church institutions targeted by Hindu extremists during anti-Christian violence in 2008.

St Theresa’s School was previously attacked in 2007 and 2009.

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