A mob of Hindu radicals disguised themselves as worshippers attacked the peaceful two-day worship event organised jointly by 12 churches in Badarpur, Delhi, beating up the pastors, choir members, injuring some and ransacking the place in the process last night.
The worship event called "Delhi NCR Peace Festival," a two-day event was organised by the youths of 12 churches in Delhi and Faridabad border at Krishna Garden, Nala Road, Near Love Kush, Jaitpur, Badarpur area in Southeast Delhi on 23rd and 24th February 2017 from 4:00pm onwards. They have invited Pastor Michael Fernandes from Mumbai as the main speaker of the event; and Pastor Sunny Vishwas and Pastor Vijay Kothwale from Pune were leading the worship with the theme "Your sorrow will be turned into you" taken from John 16:20.
According to one participant, the first night of the event went peacefully. "Many received the grace of God and new hope through the gathering as God's words was proclaimed and many people felt really graceful and lives were touched and changed," he said.
"But on the second night, as the worship begins, Hindu radicals – comprising about 15 of them who disguised themselves and sat among the crowd suddenly wake up and straight a way they went to the stage and started beating up the pastors there and also the choir members and anyone on their path," he said.
"They were using sticks, iron bar and anything, and beat up the believers mercilessly. Meanwhile, the police were watching the attack without intervention," he said.
"We were surprised that police did not stop them and they were watching the mob attacking the Christians and the venue boldly. The permission to host the event was taken from the police and they also came to guard the event but they were not doing their job," he said.
The event was reportedly attended by over one thousand believers from 12 churches in Delhi and Faridabad. The location of the event is in Badarpur, Delhi, near Faribadad border.
The attackers are allegedly belonging to Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and Bajrang Dal - known for their frequent attack on Christains and have interrupted many Christian events in different parts of the country.
Another participant said that they hit everything on their path – leaders were especially targeted, some incurring injuries as well; and broke the speaker's lectern, tables, chairs and any articles on it.
"It is sad that Christians are not allowed to hold event like this peacefully," he said.
One pastor who participated in the event said, "This is basically to intimidate and frighten pastors and leaders from preaching the word of God and Christians in general from witnessing it to others. It only strengthens our faith in Lord Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the world," he said.