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More Arrests in Martyrdom of India Missionary Family

Two Hindu extremists will stand trial for 1999 massacre of Graham Staines and his two sons.

Dozens were involved in the high-profile martyrdom of India missionary Graham Staines and his two sons in 1999, when Hindu extremists attacked them in their sleep and burned them alive. But although police originally arrested more than 50 men in connection with the murders, only two have been sentenced.

However, recent arrests may finally raise this total.

India has arrested two more men, Ghanshyam Mahanta and Ramjan Mahanta, and plans to try them in a special tribunal for their role in the massacre.

In 2000, CT reported that "police arrested 51 people allegedly linked to a Hindu fundamentalist group, Bajrang Dal [within days of the murders]. But the High Court in Orissa threw out charges against 44 of the accused two months after the arrests, because there was insufficient evidence."

The remaining men were eventually convicted, but the Indian High Court acquitted 11 of them in 2003. Only two men are currently serving life sentences.

India's high court recently reworded its ruling to remove anti-conversion language that seemingly blamed the missionaries for their own deaths.

Despite the murder of her husband and children, Gladys Staines chose to remain in India and continue her husband's work with lepers.

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Related Topics:Missions
Posted:May 23, 2013 at 11:54AM
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More Arrests in Martyrdom of India Missionary Family