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ICC Note:

Three Nepalese Christians have been arrested and sent to jail for preaching Christianity in India’s Uttar Pradesh state. According to reports, the Christians were preaching near the Town Hall section of Shahjahanpur city when they were accused of making disparaging remakes against Hindu gods. Local witnesses have reported not hearing any disparaging remarks and police have admitted they have no evidence against the three Christians. False criminal accusations against Christians preaching the Gospel is common. Hindu radicals across India often use this tactic to harass and intimidate Christians leaders seeking to spread Christianity. 

01/12/2018 India (Times of India) – Three Nepalese Christian citizens have been arrested and sent to jail for allegedly spreading Christianity among the local residents. Officials said that the trio was booked under IPC Section 295A (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) on Wednesday and was sent to the district jail after being produced in a court on Thursday.

The accused, who have been identified as Indra Bahadur Tamad, Shukra Rai and Mekh Bahadur, are said to have arrived in Shahjahanpur city on Sunday and were reportedly distributing books related to Christianity. They had rented a house in Town Hall area and had plans to stay here for some time.

On Wednesday, while addressing a crowd in Tareen Bahadurganj area, they got into an argument with Ravi Prakash Dikshit and Vimal Pandey, based on whose complaint the FIR was registered. The complainants alleged that the trio had used objectionable language to describe Hindu gods.

“The three of them are innocent and were only sharing the teachings of the Bible. A group of Christians come here every year and do the same, but such an incident has never happened before. They never uttered a single word against any god or goddess,” said a Town Hall resident, who lives near their rented house but did not wish to be named.

Inspector DC Sharma, SHO of Sadar Bazar police station, where the FIR was filed, said, “We have booked the three Nepalese residents. They are said to be connected with the World Council of Churches and promote Christianity.”

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