EFI News Persecution Watch, April 22, 2011

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April 22, 2011

Pastor threatened in Haryana

On April 17 in Gandhi Colony, Samalkha, Haryana, alleged Hindu extremists accused a pastor of luring people to convert to Christianity and threatened him to close the church or face harm.

According to information reaching EFI, an angry mob led by Jai Bhagwan entered the church premises of Sacred Assembly Fellowship shouting anti- Christian slogans. They summoned Pastor Satyam out from the church and threatened him to close the church or they will break it down.

Speaking to EFI, Pastor Satyam said, "They grasped my arm, shook me and accused me of luring people to convert to Christianity but the church members told them in unequivocal term that there is no case of allurements." They also told me to stop the worship meeting and close the church, he added.

Thereafter, the mob finally left threatening to return on the following Sunday (April 24). EFI is assisting the pastor in filing a police complaint and to get police protection on Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

Pastor's Crops Field Burned in Karnataka

Alleged Hindu extremists burned the field of a pastor for not heeding their advice to stop conducting prayer service on 6 April in Haliyal Taluk, Uttara Kannada.

According to our correspondent, the extremists opposed the Sunday prayer meetings held by Pastor Prakash Francis in his house and told him to stop conducting prayer service or face dire consequences.

As the Christians continued to pray, the extremists burned Pastor Francis’ coconut groves, fruit orchards, banana plantation and paddy field. Fortunately, the pastor's house was saved from being gutted down.

Police told the pastor not to file a complain for the safety of the Christian community as the extremists are likely to resort to any kind of violent retaliation.

2 Pastors Arrested in Karnataka

Karnataka police arrested two pastors after Hindu extremists filed a complaint against them of forceful conversion on 11 April in Bangarapete.

The incident took place when police accompanied by Hindu extremists barged into the three day prayer service organized by Pastor Timothy. At about 9 p.m. as the meeting was closing, the police arrived with the extremists and arrested Pastor Timothy and Pastor Daniel Venkatappa based on the complaint filed by the Hindu extremists against them of forceful conversion.

The police questioned the Christians for long hours at the station and warned them to stop conversion activities or they will be sent to jail. Later the Christians were released without charges after the police forced them to put down in writing that they will not conduct prayer meetings in future and imposed on them a fine of Rs 4000/- (rupees four thousand) which the Christians duly paid up.

An Appeal to write to Authorities

As concerned people, kindly write to the Chief Minister of Haryana and Karnataka appealing to him to safe guard the rights of the minority communities and to give protection to churches against attacks and to take immediate action against the perpetrators of violence.

Shri B. S. Yediyurappa
Chief Minister of Karnataka
E-mail: [email protected]

(O) Tel: +91 080 22253414 ; 22253424
(O) Fax: +91 080 22353115
(R) Tel: +91 080 22255801

Shri Bhupinder Singh Hooda
Chief Minister of Haryana
Room No.45, 4th Floor, Civil Sectt.,
Chandigarh, Haryana
Email: [email protected]

(O) Tel: (0172) 2749396 ; 2749409
(O) Fax: (0172) 2740526 ; 2740519
(R) Tel: (0172) 2749394 ; 2749395
(R) Fax: (0172) 2740596 

Issued By:
Rev. Dr. Richard Howell,
General Secretary
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