"Villagers Furious with Christian Missionaries
Samanthapettai, Jan 16 (ANI): Rage and fury has gripped this tsunami-hit tiny Hindu village in India's southern Tamil Nadu after a group of Christian missionaries allegedly refused them aid for not agreeing to follow their religion.
Samanthapettai, near the temple town of Madurai, faced near devastation on the December 26 when massive tidal waves wiped it clean of homes and lives.
Most of the 200 people here are homeless or displaced , battling to rebuild lives and locating lost family members besides facing risks of epidemic,disease and trauma.
Jubilant at seeing the relief trucks loaded with food, clothes and the much-needed medicines the villagers, many of who have not had a square meal in days, were shocked when the nuns asked them to convert before distributing biscuits and water.
Heated arguments broke out as the locals forcibly tried to stop the relief trucks from leaving. The missionaries, who rushed into their cars on seeing television reporters and the cameras refusing to comment on the incident and managed to leave the village.
Disappointed and shocked into disbelief the hapless villagers still await aid.
"Many NGOs (volunteer groups) are extending help to us but there in our village the NGO, which was till now helping us is now asking us to follow the Christian religion. We are staunch followers of Hindu religion and refused their request. And after that these people with their aid materials are leaving the village without distributing that to us," Rajni Kumar, a villager said.
The incident is an exception to concerted charity in a catastrophe that has left no one untouched.(ANI)"
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