» 04/26/2012, 00.00
Hindu nationalist governments do not protect Christians
Sajan George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), highlights the problem. More anti-Christian attacks are reported in the states of Chhattisgarh and Karnataka, which are governed by the Hindu nationalist NJP. Anti-conversion laws and lack of justice have created a climate of terror for Christians.
(AsiaNews) - Governments led by Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) "lack
the political will to guarantee security and protection for the Christian
minority inside and outside its places of worship," said Sajan K George, president
of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) as he spoke to AsiaNews about two fresh anti-Christian
attacks in Chhattisgarh and Karnataka by Sangh Parivar activists.
residents in Badne village (Kanker District, Chhattisgarh) cordoned off a
private home where Rev Dhaniram Nag and 50 members of the Pentecostal Bethesda
Church of God had gathered for a prayer service.
Led by the
village chief (sarpanch), they took the Christians out of the house one at a
time, beating each in a brutal manner. When some fainted from the violent
blows, the attackers threw cold water on them to bring them around in order to
beat them some more. They especially targeted women and children. One of the worshippers
who was already ill, Jaykant Pawar, died during the attack. The village chief
and his acolytes then tried to pin the blame for his death on the pastor and
the other Christians.
The day before,
19 April, more Hindu nationalists from the Sangh Parivar organised a protest in
front of the Hebron Church in Marathalli, Karnataka, demanding that its pastor,
Rev Victor Babu, be arrested. They accuse him of forcibly converting 32
children from a local elementary school at a summer camp.
A local resident,
Rajashekara Reddy, filed charges against Rev Babu at the Mahadevapura police
station under Article 295 A of the Indian Penal Code against "Deliberate and
malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings or any class by
insulting its religion or religious beliefs."
laws are a tool to persecute the local Christian community In Chhattisgarh," Mr
George said. "Hindu nationalist groups use them as for propaganda in their
campaign of hatred against minorities, pushing Hindus to resort to violence. In
Karnataka, militants are encouraged by the Somasekhar report to continue to terrorise
On 28 January
2011, a report by the justice commission chaired by former judge BK Somasekhar
found that the Bajrang Dal and its coordinator Mahendra Kumar were not
responsible for the attacks against churches and other places of worship in
Karnataka in 2008.
Armed Hindu extremists attack Christian funeral in Chhattisgarh
The incident took place on 6 June in Bacheli, Bastar District. Nine members of a Protestant Church were injured. Police did not intervene. Global Council of Indian Christian President Sajan George expresses his outrage.
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