Mumbai (AsiaNews) - There have been 20 incidents of violence against
Christians in Karnataka since 2012. The
script says Sajan George, the Global
Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), is always the same: "systematic
attacks against the Christian community; blatant invasions of privacy by Hindu
extremists in the sacred intimacy of homes, physical and verbal violence against
a helpless and inoffensive community ". According
to the president of the GCIC, they are "serious violations of the rights
of every Indian citizen, and a debasement of human dignity of Christians."
stop these incidents, the Protestant leader has also appealed to Pranab Mukherjee, India's new president, to
"protect and defend the rights enshrined in our Constitution." In
his speech yesterday at the official inauguration, the newly elected head of
state has promised to act as guarantor and guardian of the Indian Charter.
The last two attacks date to July 22. In the first case, the victims are six families of Gypsy Church, a Pentecostal Church of Gadag district. A dozen activists of the Sangh Parivar raided the home of a Christian, during a prayer service. Hindu nationalists have beaten and insulted those present, accusing them of practicing forced conversions. Three faithful - Lokappa Badagar, Sagarappa Bagadar and Kamalavva Badagar - were seriously injured and admitted to a local hospital. Meanwhile, Hindus have registered a complaint with the police in Gadag, declaring that Christians were practicing forced conversions.
Two days later, activists of the Bajrang Dal and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP, Sangh Parivar affiliates) urged the police to detain the six families. The agents arrested 14 Christians, and then released them the next morning. However, the police have opened an investigation into the families.
The second incident happened in the village of Muddebehal (Bijapur district), against the Evangelical Church of Salvation Rev. Manjappa Byadagi. Led by a man named Ashok, activists of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) raided the church, beating the faithful and destroying the Bibles. After the attack, the Hindus paid a man to declare that he was forced to convert to Christianity. Recording the false testimony in a video, the activists phoned the police to report the Muddebehal Christians. At that point, the inspector Basavaraj Lamani arrested pastor Byadgi, his wife, young son and one church member. After a day of detention, the officers released the four Christians, but ordered them to stop their prayer services.