Christmas 2022: Hindu supremacist groups chant “Death to Santa Claus!”

Adding to the environment of targeted hate, this time of Christians, a group of people took to the road to burn the effigy of Santa Claus days before Christmas

Santa gujarat

The days leading up to Christmas in India saw celebrations marked by sombre instances of violent attacks and hate crimes. A stark video video of a Hindu supremacist organisation burning an effigy of Santa Claus effigy to chants of “Santa Claus Murdabad” (Death to the Santa Claus) did the rounds on Christmas eve.

In the video, (link provided below), a group of 20-30 men and women, most of whom are wearing a bright orange stole, are seen carrying an effigy of a Santa Claus. Some of the people are seen carrying orange flags with the ‘Om symbol’ printed on it while some others have a stick in their hands. The man holding the Santa Claus effigy, who was leading the sloganeering, slaps the Santa Claus a few times. Throughout the video, the crowd can be seen chanting “Santa Claus Murdabad”. At first, the crowd is sloganeering at the corner of a road, but as the spectacle proceeds, they shift to the centre of the road. Interestingly, all this is happening on a busy road, and vehicles can be seen moving on the road.

After a while of sloganeering, the crowd then pours oil on the effigy and proceeds to burn it in the middle of the road, all the while chanting “Santa Claus Murdabad”. One of the men from the crowd can be seen instigating the person who then burns the effigy Santa Claus, all the while using abusive language.

The video can be viewed here:



In another video from the same incident, the same crowd can be heard saying “Jesus Christ Murdabad” (Death to Jesus Christ)

The video can be viewed here:



Though both incidents –clearly crimes under Indian law –instigating violent acts against a minority — the police are nowhere be seen. These outfits were then able to showcase a blatant display of intolerance towards a community. The crowd can be seen burning effigies and calling for the death of Jesus Christ with no sense of fear of being proceeded against.

In yet another reported incident, which took place on December 22, 2022, in a residential neighborhood in Vadodara, Gujarat, a Hindu mob violently beat up a man who was in a costume of Santa Claus. According to the media reports, the police verified that a commotion was made following the occurrence, but no official complaint was made in this respect.[1]

It was further reported that when this incident took place, the man who had dressed up as Santa Claus was handing out chocolates in the neighborhood of Makarpura. He had traveled here to meet some of his community’s residents who lived there. The Times of India reported that, according to the version given out by the police inspector of the Makarpura police station, Rashmin Solanki, some of the locals objected to the man giving out chocolates, and a “conflict” erupted between the two communities as a result of this. The police also informed the newspaper that no complaint has been filed by any of the involved parties with regard to the incident.

Solanki added that after the incident, members of the local Christian community went to the police to ask for security for a procession they wanted to organise nearby. Solanki further said that the police have promised the Christian community all the help they needed.

Attacks on Christians in Chhatisgarh

Chhattisgarh, state ruled by the Congress party has seen a spate of recent attacks on Christians recently. Over the past ten days or even longer, there have been scattered news reports about attacks on the tribal Christians in the Bastar region of Chattisgarh. According to media reports, the Christian community has been so singled out for attack that even Christmas prayers have been disrupted and the statue of Jessus Christ, vandalized[2], by certain exclusivist Hindu outfits. This has compelled Christians to flee from the Narayanpur district in Chhattisgarh.[3]

The Chhattisgarh Christian Forum (CCF) has reported that more than 100 individuals, including women, have now sought refuge in a stadium in Narayanpur, while many more have found shelter in various locations nearby, including churches. The CCF even presented a memo to state governor Anusuiya Uikey on December 21, calling for a halt to the community’s ongoing crimes. At the district collector’s office in Narayanpur, tribal Christians have been demonstrating for days in protest of alleged atrocities they have endured. Protesters from 14 villages in the tribally dominant district claim that they were attacked and driven from their homes as a result of becoming Christians.[4]

These are only a few of the recent incidents of atrocities being committed against the Christian community that have been reported by the media in the recent days. Over the past few years, attacks on Christians and their rituals and celebrations have increased, all seemingly justified on the guise of conversions.

What is worse is that Delhi, the national capital, has prevented protests against such  atrocities. According to The Wire a protest that was planned in Delhi to condemn the acts taking place in Chhattisgarh and the inaction of the state government to protect their own citizens,[5] was called off after the Delhi police (under the central Ministry for Home Affairs –MHA) imposed section 144 and prevented peaceful assembly of persons and protests.




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