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06/17/2020 India (International Christian Concern) – On June 16, a peaceful rally was organized to demand justice for Sombura Madkami, a 14-year-old Christian boy from Kendugunda village in Malkangiri district, India, who was brutally murdered by religious extremists.

On the night of June 4, extremists captured Sombura and two other Christians from their home. However, the two other Christians were able to escape their captors before they were taken to the jungle. In the jungle, the extremists brutally murdered Sombura and buried the body in an attempt to hide the crime.

Bishop Sarat Chandra says, “the murder of the young boy has nothing to do with witchcraft,” as the extremist group accused him of practicing black magic. Also, a month before a Christian from the same region was attacked and almost lynched by religious extremists.

Kenduguda village has been rife with conflicts and tensions in the past three years because of several conversions that local leaders frown upon.

Sombura’s murder occurred a month after a Christian from the same region was attacked and almost lynched, and his house raided. “The upper castes want Dalits and tribals to remain uneducated and poor, so they can better control them,” explained Bishop Nayak.

Religious extremist in Kenduguda had been harassing their community for several years before the murder. Extremists continue to restrict church activities and issue death threats against Christian families.

For interviews, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: [email protected]