Four Christians Found Guilty of Witchcraft for Healing Mentally Ill Woman in Nepal | Persecution

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Four Christians Found Guilty of Witchcraft for Healing Mentally Ill Woman in Nepal

ICC Note:

A court in Nepal has found four Christians guilty of violence and witchcraft for praying over a mentally ill woman. According to reports, the mentally ill woman and her husband both testified in favor of the Christians, but the court still found against them and sentenced them to five years in prison. This comes as Nepal becomes more aggressive towards religious minorities. Last year, Nepal adopted a new constitution declaring itself a secular nation, but also made it illegal to convert an individual from one religion to another. Will these four Christians be released on appeal? 

12/24/2016 Nepal (World Watch Monitor) – A Nepali court has found four Christians guilty of ‘violence’ and ‘witchcraft’ against a severely mentally ill woman whom they sought to heal, even though she testified in court in their favour, saying she was now better. The four are sentenced to five years in prison. A fifth Christian, Rupa Thapa, was found not guilty and released after the hearing in the District Court of Salyan – a district in western Nepal.

The five Christians had been imprisoned since July for witchcraft, forceful imprisonment and violence towards the woman, despite her husband also saying they are innocent.

Ruplal Pariyar and his wife Ganga, Lali Pun, Bimkali Budha and Rupa Thapa were arrested by the police on July 21. Alongside the other charges, they were questioned about trying to convert their alleged victim at each of their court hearings, though this was not on the charge sheet.

The arrests followed an incident on June 6 involving Seti Pariyar who was sent by her father-in-law, who used to be a Christian, to a local church for healing prayer from apparently ‘being possessed by demons’.

Witnesses report that Pariyar left the church before the prayer service was over. She was later found shouting and self-harming in a nearby forest, and taken back to her home.

A Nepali court has found four Christians guilty of ‘violence’ and ‘witchcraft’ against a severely mentally ill woman whom they sought to heal, even though she testified in court in their favour, saying she was now better. The four are sentenced to five years in prison. A fifth Christian, Rupa Thapa, was found not guilty and released after the hearing in the District Court of Salyan – a district in western Nepal.

The five Christians had been imprisoned since July for witchcraft, forceful imprisonment and violence towards the woman, despite her husband also saying they are innocent.

Ruplal Pariyar and his wife Ganga, Lali Pun, Bimkali Budha and Rupa Thapa were arrested by the police on July 21. Alongside the other charges, they were questioned about trying to convert their alleged victim at each of their court hearings, though this was not on the charge sheet.

The arrests followed an incident on June 6 involving Seti Pariyar who was sent by her father-in-law, who used to be a Christian, to a local church for healing prayer from apparently ‘being possessed by demons’.

Witnesses report that Pariyar left the church before the prayer service was over. She was later found shouting and self-harming in a nearby forest, and taken back to her home.

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