The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:
The visit of Pope John Paul to New Delhi in the first week of November is being used as a pretext for a countrywide anti-Christian campaign orchestrated by the RSS and its allied outfits. The Vishwa Hindu Parishad has organised a yatra from Goa which will reach Delhi on the eve of the Pope's visit. This yatra is being used for anti-Christian propaganda. The propaganda material which is being brought out by the VHP and the other RSS outfits spew hatred against the Christian minority.
India is a multi-religious country and the head of any religion is free to visit India to participate in religious functions. This has never been questioned before. It is a sign of the changed circumstances that under the BJP-led government, hostile propaganda against a religious group is freely conducted contravening the laws of the land. The Vajpayee government is unable to take a firm stand on this issue as the RSS is involved.
The Polit Bureau demands that the Vajpayee government take immediate steps to curb the anti-Christian propaganda being conducted through activities like the VHP sponsored yatra. Failure to do so will further damage the secular image of the country in the eyes of the world.