22 February 2018
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  • » 01/22/2018, 09.32

    INDIA

    Tamil Nadu, Pentecostal pastor found hanged. He had received threats

    Nirmala Carvalho

    Rev. Gideon Periyaswamy was 43 and led the Maknayeem church. He converted 25 years ago from Hinduism. In the past he had been harassed and humiliated. The Hindus "were not happy with the increase of the Christian faithful".

    Chennai (AsiaNews) - A Pentecostal Christian pastor was found dead hanging from the roof of his home in a village in Tamil Nadu. Rev. Gideon Periyaswamy was 43 and led the church of Maknayeem, in the village of Adayachery. His death is shrouded in mystery,  aroused by the fact that just a week ago he had lodged a complaint against extremist Hindu groups.

    Some faithful already speak of murder and the attempt to disguise murder with suicide. Speaking to AsiaNews Sajan K George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians,  states that the circumstances surrounding the pastor’s death “are strange" and he underlines the inconsistencies demaning  "a complete investigation, especially in light of the threats received in the past".

    The pastor was found hanging from a rope on January 20. At about 5 am, the body was discovered by Indira and Regina, two Christians from the community who came to the church to clean the structure. The women reported that the body of Rev. Periyaswamy hung abnormally from the ceiling, knees bent to the floor. In addition, when the police broke the knot around the neck, a cut was found under his throat, with a noticeable blood clot.

    Local witnesses claim that the death is due to the disagreements with local extremists, who humiliated and harassed him for years. "But he - remembers a believer - told us that we had to live in peace with our neighbours and not create grounds for disagreement".

    The pastor had converted 25 years ago from Hinduism and led the Adayachery church for 12 years.  Rev. Reuben, a friend of the deceased, reports that "the local Hindus were not happy with the increase of the Christian faithful". Despite the death threats, the pastor repeats: "I have no problems. If the Lord grants it to me, I will die a martyr for Christ, but his ministry will not end."

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    See also

    20/07/2013 INDIA
    Tamil Nadu, a Pentecostal pastor in prison for baptizing a woman
    Hindu extremist Rashtriya Sawayamsevak Sangh (RSS) lay false charges of forced conversions and denounce the Reverend to the police. Christian leader: “persecution of Christians has become a lawful practice in this state."

    18/01/2011 INDIA
    Orissa: police claim pastor killed by extremists, drowned. Village revolts
    An autopsy on the body of Saul Pradhan was published today clearing the two Hindu extremists accused of his murder. Family members are threatening protests and call for new examination. Archbishop of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar invites all Christians in the village to gather evidence against the two killers.

    13/06/2007 INDIA
    A Protestant pastor is beaten, before his conversion he was a Hindu nationalist
    Before he converted, Laxmi Narayan Gowda, an independent pastor and representative of the Global Council of Indian Christians was a member of a Hindu nationalist group. Aggressors beat him up and attempted to set him on fire. Now he is in hospital.

    17/10/2011 INDIA
    Kerala, U.S. evangelical pastor arrested for taking part in prayer festival
    William Lee violated the rules of his tourist visa, which prohibits participation in religious events. He risks expulsion. Sajan K George, President of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC): "The police acted to please the Hindu ultra-nationalist forces in the country. Only Christians suffer such treatment. "

    18/01/2018 09:38:00 INDIA
    Tamil Nadu, five gored to death in the 'Jallikattu' bull race

    The victims were watching the sporting event. Indian bullfighting is considered the oldest sport of modern times. The bullfighters do not use weapons, unlike the Spanish bullfighters.





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