EFI : Persecution in MP, Odisha & Chhattisgarh

March 29, 2014 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

MP: Christians arrested

madhya pradeshState police arrested three Christians on 16 March after the Hindu extremists stopped the Sunday worship meeting and accused the believers of forceful conversion in Betul city. The extremists accompanied by the police and media personnel barged into the Sunday worship meeting of Indian Prayer Hall at about 10 a.m. and disrupted the meeting. The extremists accused Pastor Sagar Ogala and the believers of forceful conversion. Thereafter, the police asked the congregation how much money they received to convert into Christianity.

“All the church members responded that they come to the church by their own accord to pray, that they did not receive any money and that there was no case of forceful conversion.” one church member said. The police thereafter told the extremists to leave the Christians alone, saying “Let them go, they are only poor and simple people”. However, the extremists started pressuring the police to arrest the Christians.

Under pressure, the police took Pastor Sagar Ogale, elder Dilip Mahajan, elder Sagar Shekhar Ogale to the police station, beat them up and registered a case against them and asked them to submit Rs 60,000/- (rupees sixty thousand) to procure their bail. The Christians were sent to the district jail as they were not able to give the required amount for their bail.

The Christians were released on bail on the morning of 27 March after the intervention of the area church leaders. Local dailies published the incident.

Odisha: Tension Grips Christian Village in Kandhamal

odishaChristians continue to suffer discrimination and threats in Ranipada, Gudrikia where one pastor was allegedly burned up and one woman allegedly murdered in the communal riot of August 2008 that took place after the assassination of a Hindu leader, Swami Lakshmanananda. The Maoists claimed responsibility for his death.

Life was never the same for the Christian community after the riot. Christians are boycotted, discriminated and threatened by the Hindu extremists on a regular basis for their faith in Christ.

On March 11, the extremists threatened to physically assault the Christians after they collected some stones to build a church in the area.

At about 9 p.m, the fanatics shouting anti-slogans came to the spot and took all the stones away and threatened to harm the Christians if they try to do any kind of Christian activities in the area. The Christians thereafter locked themselves inside their homes to avoid the attack of the extremists.

Kindly pray as area Christian leaders are approaching the higher authorities to resolve the matter.

Chhattisgarh: Pastor Severely Beaten up

chhattisgarhIn Bhanupratappur, Kanker, Hindu extremists severely beat up a pastor as they accused him of forceful conversion on 5 March.

At midnight, a mob of about 30 extremists forcefully entered into the house Pastor Ramsai Netam from New Mission Church, dragged him out and took him to a cultural hall and beat him up.

The extremists accused the Christian of forceful conversion and of practicing witchcraft and also beat up his two sons who tried to protect him.

At 9 a.m. on the next day, the police reached the spot and rescued Pastor Netam and rushed him to a local hospital. The Christian suffered serious injury on his head.  However, the police recorded the cause of the injury of Pastor Netam as “injury sustained from falling from a tree”.  No FIR has been registered against the assailants.

Chhattisgarh: Sunday Meeting Disrupted

chhattisgarhOn 19 January in Navmuda, Gariyaband, Hindu extremists disrupted the Sunday worship meeting, accused the Christians of forceful conversion and tore Bibles.

The extremists forcefully entered into the worship meeting of Prarthana Bhavan Church, accused Pastor Bhaiyalal Markam and other believers of forceful conversion, tore Bibles, desecrated the altar and spat on the food and drinking water in the church.

The extremists further forced the believers to worship two Hindu women whom they claimed were possessed by their Hindu goddess, Durga. The Christians refused to worship the two Hindu women.

The next day, the extremists verbally abused and threatened Pastor Markam when he was returning home after conducting a worship meeting in Indagoan village. The pastor relocated for safety measure.

Kindly pray for the churches in Chhattisgarh.

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