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Indian House Church attacked and Pastor, along with others, detained in Karnataka state

ICC Note:

Hindu Radicals attack worship service, inquiry still underway

By James Varghese

10/26/09 INDIA (ANS) — A group of Hindu radicals attacked an Assemblies of God House Church during a worship service and the pastor, along with few others, were detained for alleged false charges of “forceful conversion” on Sunday, October 25 at Hubli in Karnataka state, India.

It was known through ANS sources that the worship service was held at a private rented community hall and the church was named Jesus Lives Assemblies of God and is led by Pastor David Raj (47).

According to ANS sources, the incident took place on October 25, at about 11.00 am. As the worship service was going on, four men entered the hall and started taking notes and photographs of the congregation and began to cause a disturbance.

Mrs. Radha David (42), wife of Pastor David Raj, asked these people to come in and sit down. But it is known that four persons left the hall and within some few minutes, a group of 20 members from a Hindu extremist organization called Sri Ram Sena barged into the worship service and disrupted the meeting.

They then alleged that Pastor David Raj was engaging in “forceful conversion” and then dragged him out from the hall. They also burned Bibles, Christian literature and banners in front of the church.

The website www.persecution.in, reported that soon policemen from the local police station reached the spot and tried to intervene in the matter.

The Police then took Pastor Raj, his wife Radha, and three other believers – Chandra Sawyer, Mrs. Lata and Srinivas to the police station.

GCIC sources said that the enquiry is still underway, while Hindus are demanding that the men be jailed immediately.

Pastor David Raj and his wife have two daughters.