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India Briefs: Recent Incidents of Persecution
ICC Note:
This is a great article that sums up the recent attacks in India. It’s worth clicking through to the original to give you a picture of what has been happening in just the last three months. Things have definitely been heating up over there. We have our eye on it and are concerned…
06/29/2012 India (CDN)- Karnataka— Police arrested three Christians on charges of “abetment of a thing” in Hubli, after Hindu extremists verbally abused them and seized tracts from them on June 21. The Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) reported that at about 2:30 p.m. Pastor Manju Nath and two Christians identified only as Stella and Bhavani from the Indian Church of Christ were distributing gospel tracts when the Hindu extremists began shoving them and using foul language. They also seized money from them before calling police, who took the Christians to the Durgadabail police station, according to the GCIC. After having the charge against them filed under Section 107 of the Indian Penal Code, the Christians were released later that evening with the intervention of Christian leaders.
Madhya Pradesh – Police took hold of two Christians identified only as Pastor Arjun and a local church member identified only as Rakesh while they were leading a prayer meeting on June 21 in Pati, Bhalwani district. The Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) reported that about 75 people had gathered for the prayer meeting when police arrived and took the duo into custody without giving any reason. The Christians were later released without charges the same day, according to the GCIC. Madhya Pradesh is ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party, an ultra-nationalist party that supports the Hindu extremist Sangh Parivar, said to be responsible for frequent anti-Christian violence.
Karnataka – Police accused a pastor of forceful conversion after receiving complaints of alleged forceful conversion in Muddebehal, Bijapur on June 18. The Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) reported that a policeman identified only as Pawar visited the church of pastor Manjappa Byadayi from Salvation Gospel Church and began leveling allegations that there had been many complaints of “conversion activities.” The officer told them to report to the police station with all information about their activities. Pastor Byadayi and his wife reported to the station, where police accused them of forcible conversion of Hindus to Christianity and told them that they must stop the alleged activity immediately, according to the GCIC. Officers ordered the Christians to close down and leave their church building, and that if they did not they would have to report their activities to the police station daily.
Orissa – Armed Hindu extremists attacked an evangelist who goes by the single name of Baidhar on June 15 in Mitrapur village, Makhapada Block in Balasore district, seriously wounding him. The Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) reported that the extremists lit upon Baidhar while he was returning home from a prayer meeting at a Christian’s home in the village. Baidhar was bleeding heavily when rescued by Christians and taken to a nearby hospital, according to the GCIC. When the radicals learned that the evangelist had been rescued, about 50 Hindu extremists mounted an attack on 12 Christian families at 8:30 p.m., seriously injuring about 20 of them. They also ransacked their houses and tore the clothes of some of the young women. The Christians approached officials for help, the GCIC reported.
Assam – Armed Hindu extremists attacked Christians in Deopani village, South Kampur district, on June 9, sending three Christians to a hospital with serious injuries. The Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) reported that Hindu extremists had threatened to forcefully reconvert Manesor Rabha and his family to Hinduism, so he had taken shelter in another Christian’s house. Area Christians Michael Rabha and Prashanto Rabha had volunteered to guard Manesor Rabha’s house, but at midnight about 40 armed assailants took the two guards and Manesor Rabha’s wife, Mala Rabha, to a village establishment and interrogated them in an insulting manner, according to the GCIC. The extremists demanded that they renounce Christ and tried to force them to sign blank papers. When the three did not respond to their interrogators, Michael and Prashanto Rabha were repeatedly kicked and beaten. GCIC reported that a blow to Michael Rabha’s left eye with a large flashlight seriously wounded him. Prashanto Rabha was hardly breathing after the assault, and the extremists also injured Mala Rabha before returning the three to her house and threatening further abuse if they reported the assault to the police, according to the GCIC. The next morning, the three Christians were admitted to Satribari Christian Hospital in Assam with serious wounds and complications. Two other families have also fled from the village.
Assam – On June 8 in Narayanpur village, South Kamrup, Hindu extremists beat Christians and tried to force them to reconvert to Hinduism. The Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) reported that the Hindu extremists beat Bharat Rabha, Srimanto Rabha, Batiram Rabha, Matiram Rabha, Jyotish Rabha and Rubul Rabha on the street after dragging them from their homes. The frightened Christians were told to renounce Christianity and to forget about Jesus. The extremists compelled Hindu villagers to take oaths that no Christians would be allowed to enter or remain in their homes in the village, according to the GCIC. Police have visited the site and registered a First Information Report against the attackers. On the same day in nearby village of Deupani, Hindu extremists forced Bhageswar Rabha, Durgeswar Rabha and Rana Rabha to return to Hinduism along with their families after beating them up and looting their properties.

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