Hindu radicals attack believers in Karnataka

Published 12 February 2007  |  
Four believers, including a pastor were attacked and beaten up by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and Bajrang Dal activists in Chickmangalore, Karnataka, February 4.

Pastor Surendra, brothers Ananda, Raghva and Harish were invited to a birthday prayer meeting in Uppalli Village (Shanti Nagar), Chickmangalore, Karnataka. While returning from the meeting that night, the believers were confronted by the Hindu extremists who asked them what they were doing. When the radicals heard that they were Christians, the mob pounced on them and began beating them up ruthlessly with sticks.

The mob also dragged the believers to the Chickmangalore rural police station and accused the believers of forcibly converting innocent Hindus. The Sub–Inspector who registered the complaint refused to listen to the believers and promptly charged them with a case of "forceful conversion" and detained them for the night after obtaining order from the Magistrate.

The following day, local Christian leaders, who came to know about the incident, became furious and contacted the Superintendent of Police and the Deputy Superintendent of Police persuading them to direct the police station to register a complaint against the attackers.

On February 6, a group of local Christian leaders, viz. Pastor V.P Ranga, Pastor P.A Johnson, Pastor Krishnappa, Pastor Santosh George and Pastor Sunder Babu, were asked by the police constable Mohan to show him the spot where the believers were attacked. The pastors happily agreed, anticipating the release of the believers but, on reaching the site, were shocked to see a large group of Hindu radicals armed with sticks, swords, clubs and other arms waiting for them.

Before the Christians could act, the radicals shouting anti–Christian slogans attacked the pastors in the presence of the police who watched on helplessly.

While Pastor Santosh George and Pastor Sunder Babu managed to escape from the attackers and hid in the house of other believers, Pastor V.P Ranga, Pastor P.A Johnson and Pastor Krishnappa were dragged to the police station and accused to forcibly converting the Hindus.

The police are now conducting investigations into the incident and have posted police teams in the village to prevent further attacks against Christians.

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