Saturday, March 30, 2013

Religious Fanatics Invade Home, Brutally Attack Indian Christians during Holy Week

Reported by GFA. Access link HERE

Mother’s Hand Cut Off, Family Severely Beaten

CARROLLTON, Texas – On March 27 in the middle of the Christian observance of Holy Week, a band of Religious fanatics burst into the home of Indian Christians, beating all family members and maiming the mother. The family had just sat down to dinner in their home in an undisclosed area of Uttar Pradesh, India, when the attack began.

Every member of the family suffered brutal injuries. Mrs. Survati, the mother, was severely maimed. Attackers severed her hand, cutting it into two pieces. Their 22-year-old daughter, Archana, was badly beaten and her hand fractured. The father, Ramnath, and daughter Antika were also beaten, and Arvind, their 20-year-old son, suffered injuries that rendered him unconscious.

Neighbors came to the aid of the family and admitted them to a hospital where they are all currently receiving medical aid.

“The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church,” said K. P. Yohannan, Gospel for Asia ( founder and president. ‘Persecution and suffering, the way of the Cross—this is what Christ promised us, and I am convinced nothing is going to stop his Church.”

Bablu, a Gospel for Asia-supported pastor, ministers to about 200 believers spread over this area of India. Because some live long distances away, the pastor conducts prayer meetings in various locations in believers’ houses, including the home of this persecuted family. Religious militants have targeted these prayer host homes for attacks.

All evidence points to a strategy of violence to eliminate Christians from this village. The group of fanatics is currently focused on a planned attack on Pastor Bablu, waiting for him to return to other houses in the area where he often preaches or holds prayer services.

Indian Christians in this area are actively joining believers around the world focusing on the most holy week of the Christian calendar, commemorating the passion, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus.

“John 12:24 tells us, ‘Unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain.’ Jesus died and rose again. Through our choice to enter into the suffering of Christ, we are given the privilege to bring the Good News of hope,” said Yohannan. “This family experienced this privilege, and the Lord will use it to build his Kingdom.”

Monday, March 25, 2013

Church demolished by VHP goons as district officials watch in Chhattisgarh.

The Nagalpalika (city council) of Jagdalpur city in the state of Chhattisgarh, India demolished a Church allegedly under the sway of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) [World Council of Hindus] on March 13, 2013.

Church demolished Jagdalpur

The move has been widely criticized by state Christian leaders and has caused turmoil in the small Christian community.

According to reports  the Church was built on a land belonging to the pastor Budhram Baghel after obtaining due permissions in 2006.

The Church building in 2006 was a temporary shed which was constructed after obtaining permission of the village head. The village council of village Gadia had even donated 10000 rupees towards the construction of the temporary Church building then. Later this temporary structure was made permanent after obtaining necessary clearances in January 2012.

The Church known as the Divya Jyoti Church, serves the spiritual needs of 100 plus tribal Christians who are now without a worship place.

According to reports Yogeshwar Kashyap, Lakhmuram and Shyamlal of Gadia village, allegedly VHP activists, filed a complaint with the Tesildar (Revenue administrative officer) of the area alleging that the construction of the Divya Jyoti church building took place in the government land.

They in their report demanded the demolition of the Church building. Local media was mobilized by the VHP people and local vernacular media covered the news on March 12, 2013.

On March 13, 2013 the local VHP Vice President Kailash Rathi and office bearer Yogendra Kaushik came with a bulldozer with a huge mob of Hindu fundamentalists, and started demolishing the Church Building.

While the demolition was being carried out the Tehsildar (Revenue officer), Local Police Station In charge  Mr. Shukla, Patwari (Officer incharge of the documentation of the land), Sarpanch (Village Head) Mr. Lakshman, and a posse of police personnel were watching the entire proceeding silently.

According to reports from local Christian leaders, the demolition started at about 01 PM on 13th March 2013. The Christian leaders alleged that the VHP office bearers were commanding all the administrative officials and Police, as if they were in charge of the whole district, the officials were meekly obeying them and taking orders.

The Christian leaders have said that the mob demolishing the Church constituted of Bhonjaram, Jatia, Dursai, Hungo, Budhram, Sakru, Gaita, Anant, Pilu, Ranu, Gutli, Boga, Samnath, Kuya, Yogesh, and Lakhu among others.

It is important to note that while the Construction of the church building was termed illegal by the office bearers of VHP, no measurement of land was ever carried out by the Revenue officials present. No notice of any kind was ever served to any of the aggrieved.

It was observed that the word of the VHP activists was the law which was meekly followed by all the administrative officials. A tractor- loader demolished walls and roof of the church building.

When local tribal protested and tried to stop the demolition they were beaten, verbally abused and pushed around. These included many women and children. The women were subjected to lewd gestures by the members of the VHP.

When Christian tribals  approached the police station to lodge an FIR they were threatened with dire consequences and were asked to leave the police station. They were warned that they could be charged as Naxals if they do not leave and could lose their lives. 

During the demolition objects of faith were desecrated. Offerings were looted and taken away by the fundamentalist.

The Church before  being demolished

Part of Pastor Budhram Baghel’s house which was standing there for the last 70 years on his own land, was also destroyed, his ration and other belongings were thrown out of his house.

While the local Christians have managed to register a complaint in the Lohandiguda police station, no case has been registered.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Christians in India Wounded, Jailed, Expelled

NEW DELHI (Morning Star News) – Christians suffered serious head injuries, expulsion from home and incarceration based on false witness as Hindu extremists continued their reign of terror in India this month, sources said.

In the southern state of Kerala, some 100 Hindu extremists on March 10 attacked a Brethren Assembly church service in Chirayinkeezzh village, Trivandrum District, beating the Christians with wooden clubs; one church member sustained a serious head injury, said Pastor M. Anil Kumar.

The pastor, who has since relocated due to death threats, said a church member who goes by the single name of Ajith was hospitalized for three days for treatment of his head wounds, and that a Christian woman identified only as Lizie also sustained head injuries. The mob falsely accused church members of forceful conversion, he said.

Area Brethren Assembly leader K.V. Varghese said police arrested three of the assailants after Christians filed a complaint. Hindu extremists protested the arrests by calling for an all-day strike on March 12.

False Witnesses

In Madhya Pradesh in central India, two Christian leaders who were arrested after Hindu extremists beat them and falsely accused them of forceful conversion were granted bail after repeated requests on March 6.

State police arrested Pastor Isaac Rajamani and evangelist Raju Shikaria on Feb. 18 after Hindu extremists beat them on Feb. 16 in a village near Khandwa, Friends Missionary Prayer Band (FMPB) leader Jaisingh Sugumaran told Morning Star News. The extremists mounted the attack at the Gulai village home of a sick couple who had invited Rajamani and Shikaria to pray for them.

Attorney Sanjay Masini said the Hindu extremists held the two Christians for an entire night.

“The extremists took pastor Rajamani and evangelist Shikaria to a nearby house, accused them of forceful conversion, detained them the entire night and mercilessly thrashed them,” he said.

Rajamani told Morning Star News the extremists threatened to kill them.

“The extremists were telling me not to conduct worship again, and they were also discussing among themselves whether they should simply kill us or take us to the police station,” he said.

The next morning, the intolerant Hindus took the two Christians to the Khandwa police station, where a mob was waiting.

“As the two Christians got down from the Jeep, the angry mob shouting anti-Christian slogans ran towards them, pushed them down to the ground and pounded on them,” Sugumaran of FMPB said.

The extremists brought two people to the police station who gave false statements that Rajamani was converting people to Christianity by allurement, Sugumaran said.

“There was no case of forceful conversion,” he said. “The Hindu extremists forced two people who do not even know Pastor Rajamani to falsely witness against him of forceful conversion.”

The man who requested prayer, identified only as Kannaiah, said that he was healed from his illness by Jesus and that Rajamani did not force or allure him to convert to Christianity, Sugumaran added.

Rajamani’s wife, Sita Rajamani, tried to contact the pastor by mobile phone throughout the night, but to no avail. The next morning, their landlord told her that police had arrested her husband.

“She rushed to the police station and found her husband and evangelist Shikaria squatting inside the lock-up with bruises all over their bodies and wearing only underwear,” attorney Masini said.

As Christian women were consoling the pastor’s wife at her home later that day, Hindu extremists surrounded the house and began shouting anti-Christian chants.

Rajamani and Shikaria were sent to Khandwa Jail later that evening.

“We were not able to eat food till Sunday, as our heads and necks were too painful after the attack,” Rajamani said.

Hindu nationalists believe that all people in India are Hindu by virtue of being born in the country, though many tribal people are raised in tribal religions. They also feel that Christianity is a “foreign” faith that threatens their caste-based religion. India’s population is 74.3 percent Hindu, 14.2 percent Muslim, 1.9 percent Sikh, 0.82 percent Buddhist, and 5.8 percent Christian, according to Operation World.


In the eastern state of Orissa, Hindu extremists in Bhalutangara village, Kankadahada block, near Dhenkanal, became furious when a Christian family refused to pay fees for festivals involving idol worship.

The Rev. Christodan Takri, a church leader in Amar Jyoti, told Morning Star News the Hindu extremists on March 1 beat the family of Rabinarayana Marandi, took their mobile phone and drove them from the village.

The Christians submitted a police complaint, and police and administrative officials arranged for the assailants to meet with the church members on March 8 to work out a “compromise.”  The Christians agreed to contribute payment for social welfare programs and refused to give anything toward the Hindu festival idols, but the extremists insisted that village tribal law required them to contribute to all local Hindu festivals.
Threatening to withdraw government benefits, local authorities ordered the Christians to comply with Hindu extremist demands for payment and to take part in all village religious activities and rituals.

Click HERE for source

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Christian chased away from Village

According to reports, Laxman Kumeti, a Chritian from Irko village in Narayanpur in Chhattisgarh was attacked and beaten up by a mob from his own village.

The villagers were upset about his Christian faith and testimony.

The reports say that the villagers beat him up and threw him out of the village.

Please pray for him as he has nowhere to go.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Christians ambushed in Madhya Pradesh

According to reports a small crowd led by Hindu extremists ambushed and threatened local believers after they were returning from a prayer service on March 15, 2013.

A prayer meeting was organized in the Shrigarsati village in Madhya Pradesh near Dindori, and was attended by around 100 people.

After the meeting was over and the pastor had gone back to his home, around 5 – 7 people ambushed a group of believers who were also returning home. The attackers were carrying weapons.

They abused the villagers and vilified the Christian faith using the most filthy language, reports as pastor from the area.

The Christians led by the local pastor filed a first information report the next day. There are no arrests yet.

Christian villagers beaten in Orissa

Christians in the eastern region of India were tortured and beaten for hours in their village by local police officers last month, Barnabas Fund reported Tuesday.

Around 60 officers surrounded Phatachanchara village at 2:30am and forced their way into the homes of Christians on Feb 15.

The Ganjam district village in Orissa, India was in an uproar and a four-year-old boy received a fractured hand after an officer stepped on it, according to Barnabas Fund, an organization that supports persecuted and oppressed Christians.

One of the villagers apprehended by officers was tied to a tree and assaulted while crying out to God. "O God, O Jesus. Alleluia, Alleluia," they cried, causing the police officers to become more angry and violent, according to the U.K.-based organization.

The Christian Post attempted to contact Patrick Sookhdeo, international director of Barnabas Fund, for comments, but was unsuccessful.

Barnabas Fund reported that Pastor Jahaya Mandal was interrogated by police after comingforward to see what all of the commotion was about. While a church deacon, Korneil Roita, was then tied to a tree and severally beaten.

Mandal, Roita and six other Christian villagers were led out of the village, bound at the hands at 6:30am. Police forced them to walk on thorny, rocky ground for over two miles with bare feet. This caused great pain and bleeding in the tired feet of the villagers. They were then taken to another village over seven miles from their own.

Christian Indians are at risk of attack, typically by Hindu extremists, because they are the religious minority in the region. Police often do not intervene, but they rarely take part in the attacks. In a note on, International Christian Concern stated that police killed five Christians in the state that the villagers were tortured.

The note read, "Violent attacks against Christians in India, including assault, battery, rape and murder, have long gone ignored or under-investigated by local police officials. In the worst cases, local police officials have crossed the line from passive acquiescence to active participation in attacks on Christians. According to a report from India's eastern state of Orissa, five Christians were killed by local police after being mistaken for Maoists."

Odisha is home to over 36 million people and is primarily Hindu.

Click Here for source

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Bajrang Dal men attack Christian prayer house in Udupi, 7 injured

Seven persons were injured when they were allegedly assaulted by Bajrang Dal activists during an attack on a Christian prayer house at Moodubelle in Udupi district, on suspicion that conversion activities were being carried out there, a senior police official said. The attack was carried out on Friday night after the activists had lodged a police complaint against a man, accusing him of indulging in conversion, Udupi SP D R Boralingaiah told PTI.

A group of Bajrang Dal activists barged into the man's residence at Moodubelle, also a prayer house, and assaulted the people gathered there, he said, adding that 19 of them had been arrested.

Senior officials, including IGP Pratap Reddy visited the place. The coastal districts of Udupi and Mangalore had in the past seen attacks on churches triggered by suspicion that they were carrying out conversion.

Click HERE for source

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

More acquittals in Kandhamal cases

A fast track court has acquitted three persons in a case relating to the killing of a physically handicapped youth during the 2008 Kandhamal riots.

Additional Sessions Judge of Fast Track Court-I, Sobhan Kumar Dash, yesterday acquitted Bidesi Nayak, Susila Sahani and Belalsen Kanhar in connection with the murder of Rasananda Pradhan Gadragam near Rupagam on August 24, 2008, during the riots.

According to the prosecution, a mob had surrounded the house of the victim, who was handicapped and unable to move anywhere. He was allegedly burnt alive after being doused with petrol.

Rest of the members of the family had managed to escape. Police found his charred body three days later.

Click HERE for source

Saturday, March 02, 2013

How Hindu extremists respond to 'threats'

Click HERE for source

They had diverse backgrounds. Some of them had participated in the movement to build Ram temple in Ayodhya, some were associated with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and later drifted from it, some participated in anti-conversion campaigns, a few were accused of rioting in Gujarat in 2002 and

others were just criminals but they all believed in militant Hindutva and also that Muslims and Christians were abusing the generosity of India.

In the early 2000s, they slowly began to find cohesion and came out as a bunch of loosely coordinated groups with pan-India reach targeting Malegaon (2006 and 2008), Samjhauta Express train, Hyderabad's Mecca Masjid and Dargah. But for the support and strategic vision provided to them, they would have remained local ruffians or Hindutva tough men making aggressive speeches saying 'Muslims from across the border are attacking our temples and somebody needs to reply' or at the most they may have assassinated political opponents or attacked Christian missionaries.

Almost none of them had the intelligence to think of Malegaon, Samjhauta Express or Mecca Masjid or the acquitted accused in the Parliament attack case SAR Geelani as targets. So the question is who turned them towards targeting these places and people? The ideologue of the group to a great extent was Swami Aseemanand, who allegedly propagated the 'Bomb Ka Badla Bomb Se' theory but investigators believe that a few others also shaped their thinking.

So far investigators have found at least three groups of Hindu extremists active in Madhya Pradesh (MP), Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh (UP). And they don't discount the possibility of a still undetected separate group working in Delhi. Two blasts in Delhi - Jama Masjid (April, 2006) and Mehrauli (September, 2008) are yet to be solved and Hindu extremists are prime suspects in both cases.

Investigators have found that over five dozen people participated in a training camp in Raigad near Pune, Maharashtra in 2004. Besides having recruits from Maharashtra and MP, some came from other states as well. At least two of the participants in the Raigad camp died in a bomb making exercise in Kanpur in August, 2008, say investigators.

"We have reasons to believe that some retired military officials trained these recruits from UP, Maharashtra, MP, and Jammu and Kashmir in handling weapons and explosives," said a source. Hindu radicals also held camps in Bagli near Dewas and in Faridabad, Haryana.

It was a potent mix - Hindutva tough men capable of murdering people being trained in weapons and explosives and given a vision to attack high profile targets. Investigators also believe that the groups in Maharashtra and MP had some kind of coordination resulting in a series of attacks between 2004-2008.

The twin blasts in Malegaon and Modasa in September 2008 was the last known operation of the Maharashtra-MP group. Due to persistent crackdown by investigative agencies they have not been able to mount another. But investigators still believe that many leaders and foot soldiers are out there.

Two attacks rattle Christian community in Sarguja Chhattisgarh

Chhattisgarh state saw two more incidents agianst the already persecuted and targeted Christian community.

On February 21, 2012 the police arrested four pastors after Hindutva activists accused them of forceful conversion in Aara which comes under district Sarguja in Chhattisgarh .

It was reported that Calvary Gospel Mission led by Pastor Albis Bara had organised a three day revival meeting. The meeting reportedly had police protection and had two policemen guarding the venue.

On the second day after the meetings and subsequent dinner was finished, Hindu extremists from Shiv Sena stormed into the meeting place along with police people.

The police took the Pastor (s) Albis Bara, Akshay Kumar, Harendra and Angad Singh to the police station on the pretext of ‘talking’, where they were then arrested under Sections 151 of the Indian Penal Code. The section penalizes people for knowingly joining or continuing in assembly of five or more persons after it has been commanded to disperse. This charge was levied against the Pastors when the meeting was having police protection in the first place, which makes the meeting valid.

The pastors were later released on bail.

At the same time in the same district of Sarguja, Christians In Doeri village, were forced to stop a three day special meeting after Hindu extremists attacked them.

The believers Church had organized the meeting which too was targeted on the second day by Hindutva activists. They made the usual allegations about forceful conversion against Christians and created trouble for the 1000 plus people who had gathered peacefully there. In order to calm down the situation the leaders of the Church decided to discontinue the meeting and no police complaint was registered.