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Bradford England Uneasy as Hindu-Muslim Tensions Emerge

on 2001/6/22 9:45:02 ( 1363 reads )


LONDON, ENGLAND, June 14, 2001: Tensions between Hindus and Muslims have become evident in the city of Bradford where a 350,000 strong white majority coexists uneasily with 85,000 Asians, predominantly Pakistani Muslims, according to this report. Paresh Mistry, 18, an organizer of the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (Hindu Voluntary Corps) in Bradford, says his organization's aim is "to encourage Hindu youths to become good and decent citizens of this country." His group runs cultural activities for people of all ages and weekly sessions are regularly attended by more than 100 members, some as young as five. Mistry says the good work of the club is being undermined by the behavior of Muslim youths intent on provoking Hindu youngsters to react to their taunts. In one recent incident, a gang threw bricks at members attending a club meeting. He insisted that there would be no retaliation. The Vice President of Bradford Council of Mosques admits the existence of unruly Muslim elements, but says there is also a problem with a small minority of Hindus who identify with the right-wing Shiv Sena. He expressed his willingness to meet with Mistry and the police to identify when these problems occur and who the troublemakers are. "These sorts of yobs (hooligans) don't come to the mosques and it is a difficult job to get them into line. They don't listen to elders, they don't listen to police and they don't listen to authority. People practicing their faith properly would not involve themselves in such behavior as violence, disrespectful behavior and rowdyism."

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