EFI News: Persecution report from two places in Karnataka

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October 28, 2009:

Prayer meeting attacked in Karnataka

A mob of about 50 Hindu extremists attacked a church on October 25 in Old Hubli, Karnataka and burned up Bibles and Christian literature.

Our correspondent, Rev. Noel Kotian reported that at about 11 a. m., the Hindu hardliners rushed into the prayer service of Assembly of God church and threatened the believers, burned Christian’s books and dragged out Pastor David Raj from the church.

The attack starts when one unidentified person repeatedly went in and out of the church. As his action disturbed the calm of the meeting, he was requested to sit and listen to the sermon. The man left the meeting at that instance and come back with 50 extremists allegedly led by area Bajrang Dal leader Jayathirtha Kati.

The intolerant extremists started threatening the church members, burned Bibles and gospel literature and forcefully pulled out the pastor to the street

At about 11: 30 a.m. Police arrived at the spot and took Pastor David Raj , his wife and two church members to old Hubli police station.

With local Christian leaders’ intervention, the Christians were released at about 5 p.m. the same day.

Christian School attacked

Hindu extremists from Sri Ram Sena on October 22 attacked a Christian street children school, accused the manager and staff of forceful conversion in Hubli, Karnataka.

Our correspondent, Rev Noel Kotian reported that the extremists led by Krishna Gandgalkar barged into Aadarsh Care Centre, mercilessly pushed the children and questioned them on their teachers, prayers they said in the morning and checked office files and registers.

The terrified children were crying at this time but the extremists went on abusing the school manager Dr Daniel Koti and staff, accusing them of forceful conversion.

Speaking to EFI, the centre manager Dr Koti said, “This incident is unfortunate for the poor and underprivileged children of the street in old Hubli.” The attack has left the innocent children and all staff shaken, he added.

Old Hubli Police team arrived at the spot and took the school attendance register to the police station.

The police pressured by Hindutva elements on October 26 asked the manager of Aadarsh Care Centre to stop functioning till a fresh permission is obtained by them from the area District Commissioner.

Kindly pray that Aadarsh Care Centre will resume soon and for Justice and peace in Karnataka.

Rev. Dr. Richard Howell

Evangelical Fellowship of India
New Delhi, India

Evangelical Fellowship of India (established 1951) is a charter member of World Evangelical Alliance, an accredited NGO with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations