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Christians in India’s Uttar Pradesh State Endure Record Setting Month for Persecution

10/27/2018 India (International Christian Concern) – Christians living in India’s Uttar Pradesh state endured a record setting month for religious intolerance in September. According to a study by Violence Monitor, 25 cases of religious intolerance were documented in Uttar Pradesh in September 2018.

Out of the 25 cases documented by the study, 20 were documented in Jaunpur, the constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, near the sacred city of Varanasi. On September 13, a Christian in Jaunpur was leading a prayer meeting when he was beaten and threatened with severe consequences if he continued. Following that incident, other raids on Christian activities made local Christian so fearful that they were afraid of praying in their own homes.

The study by Violence Monitor notes that the majority of the incidents documented Hindu nationalists targeting Christian leaders and falsely accusing them of forced conversions.

Attacks on Christians and their places of worship in India have skyrocketed in recent years. Under the BJP-led government, Hindu nationalists have been allowed to use highly charged religious rhetoric to embolden radicals to attack religious minorities. Following attacks, police rarely arrest and punish the radicals giving them a sense of impunity.

In 2014, the year BJP took power, the Evangelical Fellowship of India (EFI) recorded 147 instances of Christian persecution in India. In 2017, after three years of BJP rule, EFI recorded 351 instances of Christian persecution.

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