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ICC Note: A Christian pastor in India’s Uttar Pradesh state was beaten up and arrested after being falsely accused of forcefully converting 11 people to Christianity. The attack took place when Hindu radicals were informed that a Christian pastor was getting affidavits notarized for 11 individuals that had converted to Christianity. The pastor was notarizing these affidavits to provide evidence that these conversions were done of free will. In spite of this evidence, Hindu radicals beat up the pastor and police arrested him for “disturbing the public peace”.

06/25/2018 India (World Watch Monitor) – An Indian pastor was beaten up by Hindu nationalists, then arrested by police on Monday (18 June) for allegedly forcing some local families in Muzaffarnagar, a city in Uttar Pradesh state, to convert to Christianity, reports The Times of India.

Dipender Prakash was reportedly attacked by members of Bajrang Dal, a militant Hindu nationalist organization because he had visited a lawyer in Sardhana town, 40km south of Muzaffarnagar, to have 11 affidavits from newly converted Christians attested by a notary. (With more Indian states introducing and implementing anti-conversion legislation, some churches now require new converts to sign an affidavit, in which they declare that they are attending church out of their own free will and were not forced.)

Responding to a complaint filed by a member of the Bajrang Dal, the police soon arrived at the scene and arrested the pastor and the lawyer he was visiting.

Because of protests from other lawyers, they soon let the lawyer go, but kept the pastor in detention on charges under CRPC section 151 for “causing a disturbance of the public peace”.

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