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For Immediate Release

Pastor’s Family, Christian School Attacked In Two Separate Incidents

You are free to disseminate the following news. We request that you reference ICC (International Christian Concern) and include our web address Contact Jeff King President, 301-989-1708, [email protected]

(September 21, 2006) The Washington-DC based human rights group, International Christian Concern (ICC) has just learned that a pastor and his wife were beaten up by a mob of about 40 people near Bangalore, the capital of Karnataka state, on September 12, while a Christian school in the city was attacked three days later.

The attack on Pastor Job Ramanjanum’s family took place at about 9:15 p.m. at Goribidanur in Nehruji Nagar, about 120 km from Bangalore . The independent pastor has been working in the area for the last 15 years.

“Ramanjanum hosted a prayer meeting for his Christian friends in his house on September 12. Four Christians from Bangalore came to attend it. As soon as the guests left, a lady came to Ramanjanum’s wife and started complaining why she had invited Christians for prayer in the house,” Dr. Sajan K. George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), told ICC.

Pastor Job Ramanjanum

Soon after the lady stormed into the house, a mob of about 40 people also barged in and dragged Ramanjanum, his wife and their four-year-old child out of the house and beat the couple.

“Some people in the mob pulled Ramanjanum’s wife’s neck while others hit the pastor in his stomach.”

Both the pastor and his wife sustained injuries.

The mob then took the couple to the local police station and accused them of “forcible” conversion. The police, however, did not register any complaint – none against the pastor’s family and none against the attackers.

Ramanjanum denied the accusation of forcible conversion and said he would continue to serve his God by sharing His love with others.

Christian School Attacked Three Days Later

Later, on September 15, the Ryan International School , a Christian school near Whitefield in Bangalore , ran into a trouble after Hindu fundamentalists created a scene on the school premises and burnt literature that had allegedly been distributed by the teachers to the students.

The parents had alleged that Christianity was being thrust on their children and the literature given “was misleading and insulting to other faiths,” in the guise of a moral education program.

Pramod Reddy, a parent, also lodged a complaint against the school in the Mahadevpura police station.

The police registered a case under Section 295 A of the Indian Penal Code, which is for “deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs,” reported the national daily, The Times of India, on September 16.

School authorities said the program was “a routine part of the school’s events and nothing was stated to incite communal discord.”

“We invite people from various fields to speak to our students on moral values. Speakers include those from top IT firms and even retired army officers,” junior school headmistress Seema was quoted as saying.

The police are investigating the allegations made by the parents.

Increase in Anti-Christian Violence after Hindu Radicals Gain Power

Talking about a sudden increase in the number of attacks on Christians in the state, George said more than 14 violent incidents had been reported between January and August this year by his organization alone.

He said the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party had never ruled this south Indian state in its history.

He added that there was a link between the increasing anti-Christian violence in Karnataka and the BJP coming to power with its allies in the state about six months ago.

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