08/13/2014, 00.00
INDIA

Karnataka: four Christian’s arrested, later released, on charges of forced conversions

by Nirmala Carvalho
The women had visited a family of another religion. Some villagers called the police, claiming they had seen them "put pressure, laying siege to the house." The President of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC): "The Hindu nationalist forces want to spread a feeling of suspicion towards Christians."

Mumbai (AsiaNews) - Four Christians were arrested yesterday in Pulittadi, in Karnataka, on the basis of false accusations of forced conversions. Some locals reported the women after seeing them visit a family in the village, belonging to another religion. According to the crowd who rushed to the scene, the four tried to "influence the family to convert, laying siege to the house."

The accused are Shirley, Mini, Leelamma and Shubha. Suresh Atramajalu, a member of the local administration, told police he had seen them handing out leaflets about Christianity and trying to convince people they met to convert. The police took them into custody and questioned them for two hours before releasing them.

Contacted by AsiaNews, Sajan George - President of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) - considers the charges against the four Christian "a matter of serious concern, because not only did they target innocent faithful, but are likely to tear the fabric of society. The Hindu nationalist forces want to spread a feeling of suspicion towards Christians. "

Conversions to Christianity, he recalls, "are valid only if freely undertaken by the individual. Yet, the accusations were false, saying that the women were putting pressure on people, and with the complicity of the authorities they were arrested".

 

 

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