India has had a history of communal conflicts primarily involving the majority Hindus and the Muslim minority. The conflicts have taken the form of riots, massacres and desecration of religious places. However, most of these conflicts are in areas where there is a significant Muslim population. There are rare instances of communal conflicts involving Christians and Hindus, such as the recent riots in Orissa subsequent to the brutal killing of a leading Hindu Religious Leader in the Khandamal District.

No historical record exists of conflicts between Hindus and other religious groups such as Jews, Bahai’s, Orthodox Christians, or Buddhists. The conflict in Sri Lanka is primarily ethnic and not religious. Communal conflicts manifest in the form of massacres and riots. Histories of communal conflicts reveal that 95 percent of all recorded riots in India were in regions having significant Muslim population. It is essential for leaders of both communities to develop confidence building mechanisms and for the governmental authorities to allocate more resources to maintain law and order in communally sensitive regions of India.