Six Christians, including a Catholic bishop, two priests, and a nun, have been acquitted of forced conversions charges in India’s Madhya Pradesh state. Madhya Pradesh is one of several states in India that have passed a religious freedom act that makes it illegal to forcefully convert an individual from one religion to another. Unfortunately, these religious freedom acts are often abused by Hindu radicals. False accusations of forced conversions are common and are a tool Hindu radicals use to harass church leadership. As India continues to become more religiously intolerant, it is expected that more false accusations of forced conversions will be seen.
04/24/2017 India (Matters India) – The Madhya Pradesh High Court has given clean chit to a Catholic bishop and five others in a nine-year-old religious conversion case.
There is “no sufficient evidence to frame the charges against the petitioners,” says the order by the principal bench headed by Justice S K Gangele.
The April 11 order was released to the media on April 20.
The court based at Jabalpur acquitted Bishop Mathew Vaniakizhakkel of Satna, two priests, a nun and two others who work in the central Indian diocese.
The six were accused of converting a Hindu woman to Christianity and then marrying her off to a Christian man in May 2009.