His Eminence Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Bombay and President of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC), spoke to the Vatican during his last visit to Rome about the victims of Kandhamal and consoled their families by mentioning that the people who died are Martyrs. The violence that lasted for nearly four months in 2008 against Christians in Kandhamal district of Odisha, India, resulted in the loss of 100 lives and left more than 56,000 people homeless.

The survivors are facing continuous denial of justice to them in a number of cases that are pending before the law courts. In his December 3 appointment letter, His Excellency Archbishop John Barwa of Cuttack- Bhubaneswar has appointed Fr. Purushottam Nayak to document and prepare dossier containing documents of the Catholics killed during this violence.

Fr. Nayak, from January 1, 2018, will document the life and virtues of the martyrs before the start of the diocesan process, to initiate the sainthood cause of those killed. He is the Archbishop’s personal secretary and deputy secretary of Odisha Bishops Regional Council.