Giving hope to persecuted Christians since 1995
Select Page

ICC Note:

Nepal’s Prime Minister has committed to addressing the concerns raised by the country’s Christian community regarding religious freedom. Earlier this week, Christian leaders in Nepal submitted a petition calling on the Prime Minister to remove a recently passed law that criminalized religious conversions. Christians fear this law will be used to harass and persecuted members of their community for just practicing their faith. Will the Prime Minister of Nepal make good on his promises to Christians or will he continue to bow to pressure from Nepal’s Hindu nationalists? 

11/09/2017 Nepal (Sight) – Nepal’s Prime Minister has committed to addressing the Christian community’s concerns over religious freedoms, reports Asia News. Some estimates put its number at four per cent of the population.

Dinesh Bhattarai, advisor to Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, said the commitment “will be immediately put into practice and everything will be settled before elections”.

Prime Minister Deuba has also said that, to ensure the success of the elections, secularism will be more institutionalized and the rights of minorities protected.

Parliamentary and provincial elections are scheduled for 26th November and 7th December, respectively.

On Wednesday, Nepali Christian leaders submitted a petition to the prime minister, calling on the government to remove from the constitution the clause punishing religious conversions. “Christians have been cheated in the past with assurances that have never been put into practice,” said CB Gahatraj, President of the Christian Federation of Nepal, after submitting the petition.

In October, Nepal’s president signed into law a bill criminalizing religious conversion. The move led Nepali MP Lokmani Dhakal to describe religious freedom in his country as “teetering on the edge”.

“The new law didn’t come unexpectedly,” according to Rolf Zeegers, analyst at Open Doors’ World Watch Research unit. “When Nepal became a secular state in 2008 Christians in the country experienced a huge increase in freedom. Christianity flourished and grew rapidly, tripling in size between 2008 and 2017 – this to the anger of Hindu radicals who have tried constantly to restore religious freedom restrictions ever since.

[Full Story]