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3 Christians Arrested in UP for "Forced Conversions"

Friday, November 9, 2018, 11:01 (IST)

Three Pentecostal Christians have been arrested in Uttar Pradesh on Oct. 5 on false charges of forced conversions.

The Christians, Kripashankar, Vijay Prajapati and Ram Dulare Ram were arrested in the village of Abu Saidpur on the basis of mere gossip, sources said.

The Hindu villagers filed a complaint in the Nizamabad police station against the prayer meetings that took place at the home of Ram.

"The police acted on the basis of simple rumors," said Sajan K. George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), as he lamented over the incident.

"He also confiscated religious texts and other books concerning the Christian community," he added according to Asia News.

The complaint filed against the three said that there were forced conversions of men and women in Ram's house, one of the detained Christians. The villagers were forced to read the sacred texts, the complaint read.

George denounces an "impetuous increase in episodes against Christians: arrested pastors, interrupted religious meetings and terrified faithful. [Uttar Pradesh] has become the repository of anti-Christian intolerance ".

It is also growing "surveillance of prayer meetings by radicals, who enjoy the complicity of the police," he said.

Christians in India "represent a tiny minority of 2.3%. Pentecostals, who meet in small houses, are the most vulnerable group, because they are charged on the basis of mere suspicion," he added.