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Indian Christians demand police action against attackers

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Christian leaders have urged the government in India’s Chhattisgarh state to act against those who attacked 16 Christian families and destroyed their houses for refusing to abandon their faith.

Even after a week, state police have not registered Christians’ complaint against the tribal group that attacked them on Sept. 22 and 23, said Pastor Moses Logan.

“Police refused to register a first information report and are forcing the persecuted to compromise with the perpetrators of the crime,” Pastor Logan told UCA News on Oct. 2.

A crowd of people opposed to indigenous people following Christianity vandalized 16 houses of tribal Christians in three villages — Kakrabeda, Singanpur and Tiliyabeda — in the state’s Bastar region.

“They also assaulted women and children, so many ran into the forest to save their lives,” the pastor said.

He said villagers suspected trouble when they noticed unusual movements and gatherings in the villages. They informed police about them three days before the attack. “But police took no action, no protection was given,” he said.

Crowds of men used wooden sticks and poles to partially destroy the thatched roofs and walls of mud houses. The attack came after Christians refused to join the rituals and prayers of the indigenous Sarna religion.

“The goons demolished the houses in front of the police and other district officials who did not stop them terrorizing even others who witnessed it,” Pastor Logan said.

Pastor Logan, who is also president of the Chhattisgarh State Christian Welfare Society, wrote to state chief minister Bhupesh Baghel on Sept. 28 seeking action against the criminals.

Arun Pannalal, the ecumenical Chhattisgarh Christian Forum president, said they had arranged accommodation and food for at least 20 people who fled villages fearing for their lives.

“Unfortunately, the police have not accepted the complaints from the poor people who have been rendered homeless and forced to flee their own villages,” Pannalal told UCA News on Oct. 2.

The Christian leaders appealed to the government to accept the complaints of the persecuted Christians and to initiate action against the attackers and compensate villagers for their loss of houses and other articles.

Archbishop Victor Henry Thakur of Raipur said the government should make sure that the criminals are punished.

He said such attacks have happened during the 15-year long rule of the pro-Hindu Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Chhattisgarh.

“It is unfortunate that these attacks continue even now” after an alliance of secular parties came to power in the 2018 state election ater defeating the BJP.

“If the government fails to initiate exemplary action against those behind the persecution of Christians, it will lead to lawlessness and chaos,” he said.

Archbishop Thakur also demanded adequate compensation for victims and protection for people to help them return to their homes.

Christian leaders say Chhattisgarh remains among the three worst states for Christians in India as they face hostility from right-wing Hindu groups opposed to Christianity.

Quoting from different reports, Pannalal said the state had recorded 39 incidents of persecution against Christians since January this year. It is the worst state for Christian persecution after Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, he said.
Sources:UCA News

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പതിനാറ് രാജ്യങ്ങളിൽ ഇഫ്താർ വിതരണം നടത്താനൊരുങ്ങി സൗദി അറേബ്യ

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റിയാദ്: പതിനാറ് രാജ്യങ്ങളില്‍ ഇഫ്താര്‍ വിതരണം നടത്തുന്ന പദ്ധതിക്ക് തുടക്കം കുറിക്കാനൊരുങ്ങി സൗദി അറേബ്യ. കൊവിഡ് പ്രതിരോധ, മുന്‍കരുതല്‍ നടപടികള്‍ പാലിച്ച് സൗദി 16 രാജ്യങ്ങളില്‍ ഇഫ്താര്‍ വിതരണം നടത്തുമെന്ന് റിപ്പോര്‍ട്ട് ചെയ്തു.

വിവിധ പ്രദേശങ്ങളില്‍ നിന്നുള്ള അഭ്യര്‍ത്ഥനകള്‍ക്കനുസരിച്ച് അതത് രാജ്യങ്ങളിലെ സൗദി എംബസികളുമായും ഇസ്ലാമിക് മന്ത്രാലയ കേന്ദ്രങ്ങളുമായും ഏകോപിപ്പിച്ചാണ് വിതരണം നടത്തുക. ലോകമെമ്പാടമുള്ള മുസ്ലിംകളെ സേവിക്കുക എന്ന ലക്ഷ്യത്തോടെ ഇസ്ലാമികകാര്യ മന്ത്രാലയം നടപ്പിലാക്കാനുദ്ദേശിക്കുന്ന പദ്ധതിക്ക് എല്ലാ പിന്തുണയും നല്‍കുന്ന സല്‍മാന്‍ രാജാവിനും കിരീടാവകാശി അമീര്‍ മുഹമ്മദ് ബിന്‍ സല്‍മാനും ഇസ്ലാമികകാര്യ മന്ത്രി ഡോ. അബ്ദുല്ലത്തീഫ് അല്‍ അശൈഖ് നന്ദി അറിയിച്ചു. ഇഫ്താര്‍ വിഭവങ്ങള്‍ വിതരണം ചെയ്യുമ്പോള്‍ ഓരോ രാജ്യങ്ങളിലെയും ഗുണഭോക്താക്കളുടെയും വിതരണ തൊഴിലാളികളുടെയും സുരക്ഷ ഉറപ്പുവരുത്തുന്നതിനായി വേണ്ട കൊവിഡ് പ്രതിരോധ നടപടികള്‍ സ്വീകരിക്കുമെന്ന് മന്ത്രി വ്യക്തമാക്കി.

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Court in India Grants Bail to Men Accused of Harassing Nuns

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India – According to the Union of Catholic Asian News (UCAN), a court in India’s Uttar Pradesh state has granted bail to three Hindu activists accused of harassing two Catholic nuns and their students on a train.

On March 19, two nuns from the Congregation of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart were forcefully removed from a train in Jhansi by a mob of radical Hindu nationalists. The mob falsely accused the nuns of trafficking two young women for the purpose of converting them to Christianity.

Although the two women show identification proving they were already Christian, the mob continued to harass the nuns and handed them over to railway police. The nuns were then marched to the local police station as the mob followed chanting obscenities and nationalist slogans.

Local church leadership eventually engaged with police to resolve the issue. However, the four Christian women had to leave Jhansi the next day disguised in civilian clothes.

Railway police arrested Ajay Shankar Tiwari, Anchal Arjaria, and Purgesh Amaria on April 2 in connection with the incident. However, these three men were granted bail by the Jhansi District Court on April 7.

UCAN reports that the decision to grant bail has brought mix reactions from Christian leaders.

“We can’t see it as a setback for us as there is a provision for people getting bail according to the Indian constitution,” Archbishop Felix Machado of Vasai told UCAN. “We should believe in the law of the land. It might take some time, but I believe that one day the accused will be brought under the law.”

Across India, impunity is enjoyed by many perpetrators of religiously motivated violence. In many cases, the perpetrators of anti-Christian violence falsely accuse their victims of engaging in fraudulent religious conversions to justify their attacks. Unfortunately, local authorities often accept these justifications as legitimate and allow perpetrators to escape justice.
Sources:persecution

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