03/17/2020 India (International Christian Concern) – A Christian hospital in India’s Karnataka state was attacked by Hindu extremists after a hospital official was asked about a Bible by a Hindu patient. According to Christian leaders in India, the attack on the hospital is a sign of the growing intolerance faced by the country’s Christians.
On Monday, March 2, members of the Rashtriya Swayamasevak Sangh (RSS), a radical Hindu nationalist group, stormed Sanjo Hospital, located in the Mandya district of Karnataka. According Asia News, the RSS members beat up a Simon George, a Christian public relations officer, and a hospital administrator before they accused the two of blasphemy. Both Christians were later arrested by local police.
According to Fr. Josekutty Kalyil, the attack stems from the hospitalization of an elderly Hindu man on Sunday, March 1. Prior to being discharged, the man asked why there was a Bible in his room. Simon George replied that he could read it if he was interested. The next day, after this exchange, the hospital and Simon George were attacked.
According to Asia News, Simon George and the hospital administrator were denied bail by a local court following their arrest.
“There is nothing criminal or illegal about keeping a Bible in a hospital room,” Sajan K. George, President of the Global Council of Indian Christians, told Asia News. “Also, no Hindu deity has been offended.”
“Christian missionaries who work in the medical and educational field are targeted every day by extremists who try to discredit their altruistic work,” George continued. “Our Christian institutions serve mostly those who attack, abuse and assault us. May God forgive them for they know not what they do.”
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