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ICC Note:

Religious minorities faced unprecedented persecution in 2017. Christians and Muslims suffered under radical Hindu authorities and laws that have targeted religious minorities in an effort to create an all-Hindu state. Christians are primarily targeted for forced conversions, the accusation that Christians force Hindus to convert to Christianity. Almost any conversion, even if the person willingly became a Christian, will be documented as a forced conversion and all Christians involved in the situation will be forced to convert to Hinduism or face punishment. Anti-conversion laws have been enacted in multiple states which has essentially legalized radical Hindu persecution of Christians.  

01/02/2018 India (Anadolu Agency)  – 2017 was a year that India’s Christians and Muslims would not like to remember.

This was the period when hate crime and violence against the minority communities saw a steep surge. While radical Hindu extremist outfits unleashed violence against Christians for allegedly encouraging conversion of Hindus to their faith, Muslims were mainly attacked on suspicion of smuggling or transporting cows — considered sacred in Hinduism — for slaughter.

In December, Christian schools in northern Uttar Pradesh had been warned against celebrating Christmas by the Hindu Jagran Manch, a right-wing Hindutva group affiliated with the state Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s Hindu Yuva Vahini.

According to Manch leaders, Hindu children were supposedly being lured to Christianity.

Sonu Savita, a leader of the organization in the city of Aligarh, said: “A Christian festival was being foisted on the Hindu children in schools and it was only a ploy to convert them to Christianity. It is our duty to safeguard our children from these foreign forces.”

Although the state police tightened security following Hindu outfit’s threats, celebrations in many schools remained subdued.

In Madhya Pradesh’s Satna district, over 30 Christian priests and seminaries of St. Ephrem’s Theological College were detained by police on Dec. 14, 2017, after activists of radical Hindu group Bajrang Dal accused them of forced conversions. They were allegedly roughed up at the police station by members of right-wing group and a car belonging to the priests who visited the police station the next morning to inquire about the incident was torched. Although the priests were released a day later, the incident left them traumatized.

 

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