(AsiaNews) - "The anti-Christian intolerance in Jammu and Kashmir is
reaching alarming proportions" is the complaint of Sajan George, president
of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), after the arrest of
two Christians in Srinagar, the capital of Indian state,
on false charges of forced conversions. The
arrest took place on April 10 last, after a Muslim mob attacked two men, five
women and two children, all of British origin.
The foreigners had been living for about four
years Shivpora, a district of Srinagar. According
to local residents one of them, James Thomas, was engaged in conversion
two days ago a large group of people attacked the Christians, threw stones at their
vehicles and tried to destroy their house. The
intervention of the police prevented the demolition and the wounding of those
present, but officials arrested James and Alora Milli to clarify the charges
The police have
impounded the building and evacuated the foreigners. The
local imam told police that he had repeatedly asked the foreigners not to
convert Muslims, but to no avail. "Now
- he added - they can no longer access the area. And even if they try to
convert anyone, I will prevent it at all costs."
false and defamatory accusations of the Imam - says Sajan George - and the
complicity of the police in arresting these Christians are a serious threat to
religious freedom, a right guaranteed by the Constitution of India."
Kashmir is the only Muslim-majority state of India where religious intolerance frequently
past January, a
group of foreign tourists risked being lynched after the publication of
some posts on Facebook. An exemplary case
dates back to 2011, when the Rev. Chander
Mani Khanna, pastor of All Saints Anglican Church, was arrested
for having baptized seven Muslims and then indicted
by an Islamic court (which has no legal authority in the State or in India, ed)
for proselytism and forced conversions.