Christian activities trigger tension in Uttar Pradesh

Published 01 August 2019  |  

Christian activities like a Protestant priest in Kanpur district praying for a sick old woman and another Pentecostal priest in Gonda conducting religious services has triggered a strong tension among Hindu extremists in Uttar Pradesh.

Hindu extremists usually use conversion as a reason to attack Christians and stop them from performing religious activities.

A few days ago, Rev Raju Prasad was attacked by the members of Bajrang Dal, the youth wing of Vishva Hindu Parishad.

According to Sajan K George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), in Kashiram Colony, Kanpur district, a woman had asked Rev Prasad and two women to recite some prayers for her sick mother. Reportedly, the health condition of the old woman improved and the daughter thanked the invocations. But the Hindu radicals accused Rev Prasad of trying to convert Hindus and attacked him before taking him to the police station.

Ranjeet Rai, station house officer of the Chakeri police station, said, "The preliminary investigation suggested that a woman had called the pastor and two women to offer prayer for her ailing mother at her house. She told us that her mother was recovering due to the prayer. She and the pastor denied conversion." The officer warned the women to not to call anyone for prayer and thus the matter was settled without a FIR.

"Even in the district of Moradabad, the small Pentecostal community is subject to constant harassment. The nature of their meetings is distorted and labelled conversion activity. Attackers manage to avoid criminal prosecution, whilst defenceless Christians are always arrested. Pentecostals are second-class citizens.

"India is a secular state with constitutional guarantees for religious freedom. Nevertheless, even in the 21st century, insecurity, threats, intimidation and arrests mark the life of the Christian community," GCIC president, George said.


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