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India: Orissa

Volume 706: debated on Wednesday 21 January 2009


Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their assessment of the situation of Dalit Christians in Orissa; and whether it is safe for them to return to their homes. [HL574]

An EU delegation, which included a representative from our High Commission in New Delhi, visited Orissa between 9 and 12 December 2008 to assess the latest situation. They observed that the situation in Orissa remained sensitive, tense and unsettled and that some of those affected by the violence had still not returned to their homes. However, the delegation received assurances from the Orissa State Director General of Police that all measures had been taken to prevent and suppress any repetition of the violence that took place in 2007 and 2008. The EU presidency also wrote to the Indian Government to reiterate EU concerns on this issue. Our High Commission and its EU partners in New Delhi continue to monitor the situation closely.