EFI News Persecution Watch, November 19, 2010

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Attack on Church and Believers in Ludhiana, Punjab
Appeal to the Authorities

November 19, 2010

On 14th November 2010, some Hindu fundamentalists attacked a church in Moti Nagar, Ludhiana and also beat up one of the believer and threatened him and his family of dire consequences, if they attended Sunday Worship.

It all started 3-4 week back when an uninvited man named Munna started coming to the Sunday Worship being led by Pastor Sunil at Moti Nagar Ludhiana. After attending Sunday Service, Munna tried to be friendly with one the Christian in the Church Mr. Bindeshwar. Munna enquired about his residence and requested to meet him to ask some questions. Bindeshwar innocently took him to be a new seeker and invited him home. On the very first meeting, Munna started arguing with Bindeshwar and spoke bad words about the Bible and the Pastor. On the second Sunday, he again reached at Bindeshwar’s home uninvited and started more aggressive. On seeing this, Bindeshwar very politely told him to be calm and discouraged him from coming to his home any more. But last Sunday, Munna reached Bindeshwar’s home early morning and threaten them not to go to Church. When Bindeshwar’s son insisted that they were free to go anywhere, he left in anger and soon returned with a mob about of 40 people armed with sticks and swords. After dragging Bindeshwar out of his house they started beating him badly and started raising Anti-Christian slogans. On seeing this, the neighbors came to his rescue and hide him. But they came into his house and kept on looking for him. After some time the mob went to the church nearby and raised slogans against Christians and threaten believers who were in the Church. They waited for pastor Sunil to turn up so they can beat him up but he did not come.

Soon after, the local Christian leaders got together and reported the matter to the local police at Focal Point police Station. The police soon arrested 3 of the fanatics but under pressure from local BJP leaders, released them without registering FIR. Till November 17th, Wednesday, no police enquiry took place. The Fundamentalist alleged that Pastor Sunil offered money to Munna in exchange for embracing Christianity.

When our correspondent Rev. Issac Dutta called the inquiry officer ACP Nilambri Jagdle, she simply said that an enquiry is underway and rest they will inform later. It seems, the police and other Govt. authorities are giving favor to the Hindu fundamentalists under apparent pressure from political parties. Around 50 pastors and leaders from different denominations came together on 16th November and went to Focal Point police station to enquire about FIR. But police is trying to hush up the matter without taking any action.

The administration called both the parties on 18th November and made compromise between them and assured that they will not allow any attack on Christian community in the future. Christian United Federation (CUF) is taking care of the whole matter.

An appeal to write to authorities

As concerned people, kindly write to the Chief Minister of Punjab, appealing 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 Prakash Singh Badal
Chief Minister of Punjab

(O) Tel: (172) 2740325 ; 2740769
(O) Fax: (172) 2741821
(R) Tel: (172) 2741322 ; 2741758 ; 2740737

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