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Christian congregation attending house worship attacked in Karnataka

Monday, February 10, 2020, 23:48 (IST)

A small group of Christians gathered in a home for worship were attacked by a mob of radical Hindu nationalists in Malasamudra village, Karnataka on January 19.

Morning Star News reported that the radicals entered the Christian house soon after the worship began at 7 a.m. and started taking pictures and videos of the service and beat the Christian children from among the congregation.

Mary Bellary, one of the members of the congregation, told Morning Star News that the radicals "flashed camera lights at the children, and we requested them to please go and not disturb the prayers. But they continued taking pictures, videotaping us and passed comments, saying, 'Look! Christians gathered here on the terrace to carry out conversions.'"

"They punched my 15-year-old son in his stomach, and other kids also got hurt. They were kicked to the floor and were beaten up on their back. My uncle and husband tried hard to protect the women and children, but those men were very aggressive and physically stronger than us," Bellary explained.

The radicals abused the women who tried to oppose them by pulling their sarees, tearing them and grabbing their chests.

Following the attack, the radicals threatened the Christians not to report the incident to the police. They said they would burn the Christians to death if the matter went to the police.

According to Morning Star News, police officials from the Gadag Town Police Station came to the site at around 7 p.m. and informed the Christians that they were charged with a criminal complaint.

"The police officer told us that we had attacked some people during Christians prayers that morning and that they were injured and hospitalized," Bellary said. "After attacking us, the Hindu extremists got themselves admitted in the hospital and filed a false complaint against us."

The matter came to negotiation at around 11 p.m. after an advocate from ADF India was contacted. The police officials and the radical Hindus reached a compromise and no false criminal charge was booked against the Christian congregation.