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Pastor’s Wife Beaten, Family Intimidated In Tamil Nadu

Global Council of Indian Christians

3/8/07 India (Persecution Update India ) – Pastor Abraham has been working in the Salem-Dharmapuri area for over twenty years. He has planted a church in Tharamangalam village where about 30 people attend services, held in their home. They live in an area dominated by the Vanniyars. They have congregations in seven villages nearby.

In yet another instance of caste-ism, a Vanniyar family has subjected them to incessant harassment, verbal abuse, throwing stones on their tiled roof, etc.- the reason is that they belong to another community, and also work among the poor and the untouchables. Pastor Abraham’s mother comes from a Dalit community, and her relatives live in the area. The teenaged daughter is harassed by the son of the family on her way to and from school. In November 2006, there was another incident of throwing stones at their house and the pastor’s wife Gomathi decided to question their behavior. A verbal duel ensued. Earlier, they had approached the nearby police station to complain about the family’s behavior, even though they had not filed an FIR. Gomathi picked up their 4-year-old son and left to go to the police station to complain about the latest episode of aggression. The neighbors, Govindan and his wife Kamala, went after her and assaulted her about fifty feet down the lane. Kamala held Gomathi by the hair and Govindan beat her on her head, shoulders, and neck. The Abrahams’ eldest son, Prakash, 20, ran to his mother’s rescue and managed to free her from their clutches. At the Police station, they were sent to hospital where Gomathi was admitted for treatment for seven days.

The police counseled the offenders and asked the Abrahams whether they would press charges, but as they are neighbors and “Christ tells us to forgive”, the Abrahams have so far not filed a complaint. But this has not caused their tormentors to desist from their behavior which continues to be abusive and aggressive.

Please pray for the ministry and especially that the hold of caste-ism in the society will be loosened by the love of Christ.