A pastor in India said a mob of 300 Hindu extremists terrorize Christian children and threaten to beat them for attending a Sunday school class he was leading.
Pastor Selva Raj of Amathur village in India’s Tamil Nadu state told that the attack happened on Nov. 11. The mob of 300 or so radicals destroyed a shed near the worship building before descending upon children in a Sunday school class.
“They took away the Bible storybooks and some song and activity books from the children and tore them into pieces,” Raj told. “They scared the children away by telling them that they will be beaten up if they are seen in the church premises ever again.”
The Hindu radicals then pressured both police and landlords to banish the pastor from the village.
Despite pressure to leave the village, Raj said he has refused to do so.
“I told them that I am not going to write anything,” he said. “The inspector also told them, ‘If he has done something wrong, you tell us, and we can give him a strong warning to not do it. But we do not have the authority to tell anyone to leave the village.’”
Raj explained that local Hindu leaders have been highly opposed to the presence of Christians in Amathur, and for years have been chasing away other pastors.
He vowed to continue offering Bible study classes for the children, no matter the cost.
“I’m ready to become martyr for Christ,” the pastor said. “Until my Lord provides us a building, we will continue serving the Lord. It is fine even if we do not have shelter, we will not stop worshiping Him. We are ready to die for Christ.”
Christians have been attacked, beaten and threatened by Hindu radicals throughout rural areas in India, often falsely accused of trying to forcefully convert other believers.
A pastor who leads a congregation in Madhya Pradesh State said in September that 15 families were scared off from going to church due to threats made by Hindu radicals, but they continue to worship Jesus in secret.
“The radicals say they will beat and kill my church members if they continue to attend the services,” Pastor Singh, as the church leader was identified, told International Christian Concern at the time.
“Prior to May this year, around 200 people used to worship regularly in my church,” he added. “But now only 50 to 60 people attend my church on Sunday. They are under tremendous pressure from Hindu radicals.”
In other instances, Christian families have been pressured into converting back to tribal religions. Three families faced such a fate in October in Lisiya village, West Singhbhum District, after Hindu radicals began destroying their homes and threatening to take their land and resources.
“Pastors and Christians from Lisiya and surrounding village churches tried to encourage them to continue in the Christian faith in these testing times,” area resident Subod said of the difficulties placed upon the Christians.
Mob of Radicals Nearly Kill Pastor and Family in Northeast India
According to Morning Star News, a small mob of radical Hindu nationalists broke into the home of a Christian pastor in India’s Bihar state in an attempt to kill the pastor and his family. Fortunately, the mob was driven away by local villagers before they could physically harm the pastor and his family.
The attack took place at 1 a.m. on Monday, October 28. According to Morning Star News, a mob of 10 to 15 radicals brandishing swords, bricks, and metal rods surrounded the home of Pastor Palathingal Joseph Johnson in the Rajasan area of Bihar’s Vaishali District.
“Soon we heard the noise of glass breaking,” Pastor Johnson told Morning Star News. “One team climbed the roof of our house, but they could not break open the roof to enter the house. So, they twisted the aluminum corrugated sheet and entered.”
Pastor Johnson and his family, including his wife and four children, hid themselves in one of the home’s two rooms. However, the door to that room did not have a lock, so Pastor Johnson and his wife had to use their bodies to block the radicals from entering and attacking.
Pastor Johnson calls to local police went unanswered, so he called a local Christian for help. Soon, 50 local villagers arrived on the scene and drove away the radicals.
“If the attackers had managed to come into the room where the family was hiding, we would be looking at a much worse situation,” Pastor Gautam Kumar, a local activist and pastor, told Morning Star News. “I do not doubt that they would have killed the family.”
The incident has been reported to local police and a First Information Report (FIR # 427/19) has been filed. However, no arrests have been made in regards to the incident.
Attacks on Christians and their places of worship in India continue to rise in both number and severity. Since the current, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) took power in May 2014, the number of documented incidents of Christian persecution has more than doubled.
പ്രകോപനത്തിന് പ്രതികാരം: ആണ്സുഹൃത്തിന്റെ മുഖത്ത് 19-കാരി ആസിഡ് ഒഴിച്ചു
ആഗ്ര: രഹസ്യ ചിത്രങ്ങള് പ്രചരിപ്പിക്കുമെന്ന് ഭീഷണിപ്പെടുത്തിയ ആണ്സുഹൃത്തിന്റെ മുഖത്ത് 19-കാരി ആസിഡ് ഒഴിച്ചു. അലിഗഡിലെ ജീവന്ഗഡ് പ്രദേശത്താണ് സംഭവം. യുവാവിന്റെ ബന്ധുക്കളുടെ പരാതിയില് പെണ്കുട്ടിയെ പോലീസ് അറസ്റ്റ് ചെയ്തു.
വിവാഹത്തിന് തയാറായില്ലെങ്കില് രഹസ്യചിത്രങ്ങള് സമൂഹമാധ്യമങ്ങളില് പ്രചരിപ്പിക്കുമെന്നു പറഞ്ഞ് യുവാവ് ഭീഷണിപ്പെടുത്തിയിരുന്നു. ‘ഇതിന് പിന്നാലെയാണ് ഇങ്ങനെ ചെയ്യേണ്ടി വന്നതെന്നും പെണ്കുട്ടി പോലീസിന് മൊഴി നല്കി. അതേസമയം, മകനുമായി പെണ്കുട്ടി അടുപ്പത്തിലായിരുന്നെന്നും എന്നാല് കുറച്ചു നാളുകള്ക്ക് മുന്പ് ഇരുവരും തമ്മില് പിണങ്ങിയതായും യുവാവിന്റെ അമ്മ പറഞ്ഞു. മകനെ പെണ്കുട്ടി നിരന്തരം ഫോണില് വിളിച്ച് ശല്യം ചെയ്തിരുന്നതായും അമ്മ വിശദമാക്കി.
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