Why have attacks against different groups or sects of Christians increased over the past two years? Who are behind these terror tactics? Perhaps it is time for the mainstream media to investigate! For quite some time now, we have been getting reports on what appears to be a series of low-intensity, small scale attacks on Christians that have become fairly common in small pockets across the country.
These incidents take place in places with a very small Christian population ( where there may be two or three families, or small gatherings or churches). The strategy is that a loud and overbearing group of men will descend suddenly, beat up people, accuse them of ‘conversions’, and often this is planned when the group of Christians are in the midst of their prayer service.
Christians usually refrain from violent retaliation in their prayer house, and this makes it easy for these anti-social bullies. The police rarely come to the rescue of the victims, because the attackers appear to have political patronage, or blatantly misuse the anti-conversion law to put a case against the pastor. (Even though these baseless cases never see the light of court).
Such incidents of intimidation have been happening across India: Bihar, UP, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Maharashtra….
Karnataka, May 16, 2017: Pentecostal Christians were attacked by so called “saffron” extremists who accused the Pentecostals of ‘forced conversions’ in Karnataka.
It is reported that the last two episodes of violence against the Christian minority in the suburbs of Bangalore (the state capital), where carried out by people claiming to be ‘Hindutva followers’ who threaten and harass minority groups. “The attacks on innocent Pentecostal Christians by such elements show a dangerous increase in intolerance against the Christian faith, even in public places,” says an Asia news report
The most recent violence occurred May 15 at Ramamurthy Nagar against a group of Pentecostals led by a Pastor Gibi who was distributing gospel leaflets. They were attacked by some radicals on charges of forced conversions.
Earlier on May 13, another group of Protestant Christians was assaulted at Lingarajapuram, again on the outskirts of Bangalore. Christians were led by Pastor Manohar and were distributing religious pamphlets in a completely free way, leaving free choice to passers-by whether or not to accept the material with extracts from the Gospel.” “No one was forced – he adds – to take the texts. Pentecostals offered them freely, divulging the Good News. “
In both incidents the extremists set the boxes containing the Christian religious material on fire. Hindu radicals also blocked and threatened the Christian minority. ”
“What is a criminal in distributing Christian brochures?” Manohar asks. He also points out another aspect: “In both cases, the Christians were in public places. This is neither criminal nor illegal. There was no attempt at conversion either by force or by seduction. ”
According to the Christian leader, the only goal of extremist groups is to perpetuate the campaign of hatred against Christians. False accusations of forced conversions only lead to sectarian tensions.”
Another report from Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh:
This took place in Ghaziabad at the residence of Bro. Ash Prakash where the (Believers’ Church) assembly meets every Sunday.
Two new men came couple of weeks ago asking for a Bible and showing interest to attend the Church. Today they came and sat in the asset and later 4 more joined them again some tough people walked in when Br.Johnny Dawson was preaching, when asked why they came the men charged our people them at they were converting people and without any delay they pulled out sticks and started beating believers. Within five minutes they left the scene after beating our people before the neighbors would get alerted. After this the believers called the police and filed an FIR. Nobody is seriously hurt but they are grieved because if this incident. Please pray for the work and ministry. (as obtained from ICAN)