Cardinal Oswald Gracias has expressed pain over the Bodh Gaya serial blasts and extended his support to Buddhist pilgrims around the world, three days after nine explosions shook the holiest Buddhist shrine in the Bihar.
“I would like to assure our Buddhist pilgrims from all over the world, especially from Sri Lanka, China, Japan and the Southeast Asia region, that India is a land of peace, compassion and harmony and we give them our support and solidarity,” said Cardinal Gracias, who is also the general secretary of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC).
He said that as an Indian, he is anguished and pained at the “horrendous violence at this sacred place of worship.”
Nine medium-intensity explosions took place on July 7 at the Mahabodhi Temple, which is named a UNESCO world heritage site and where Buddha attained enlightenment.
Two monks were injured in the incident and the temple complex suffered minor damage.
No one has been arrested in connection with the blasts.
However, the National Investigating Agency, which is probing the blasts, has announced a reward of 1 million rupees for information that would lead to the bombers.
“Our prayers and concerns are with so many who have experienced the trauma of these acts, most especially those who were injured,” the prelate said.
“Before this mindless violence, we, the Catholic Church in India, the Christian community and leaders of other religions must be united so as not to be overcome by the devil, but fight him with good, working together to build a more just, free and secure society, based on love, justice, truth and service, for generations to come,” he added.
Source: Asia News
India: In 2008, sister alphonsa became the first native indian to be canonized.