Sunday, February 12, 2006

Missionaries booked for conversion


SRINAGAR, FEBRUARY 8: The J-K Police today swooped down on a Christian missionary group for using "earthquake relief as a means to convert people in far-flung villages along the LoC" and seized cassettes, Urdu-translations of the New Testament and other materials from the group. A case has also been registered against the Bible Society of India.

"Under the garb of relief, they (missionaries) were trying to convert people, promising them money and houses in Srinagar city in exchange for the change of faith," IGP, Kashmir, K Rajendra said.

"We will not allow it to happen. Instead of coming to the help of quake victims, they are making relief a bait for conversion."

The police said a group of missionaries from the Kashmir chapter of the Bible Society of India had been visiting Madian village in Uri sector. "On January 25, they had distributed gas cylinders, three water bottles, audio cassettes and a copy of the New Testament in Urdu besides other material to each of the 230 families of the village," Deputy Inspector General of Police, Baramulla-Kupwara, Mohammad Subhan Lone said.

Lone said the police had ordered a probe after the locals protested against the missionaries. "This could turn into a law and order problem. We have filed a case and are investigating the matter," he said.

It is learnt that Lone has submitted a report about the missionaries' activities in quake-hit areas. The Police said their probe has revealed that the group operates from Nishat, Srinagar, and that a local resident Mukhtar - who runs an educational institution - had been acting as their guide in the area."

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