India: Police slow to register case after church burnt down by suspected Hindu extremists

India: Police slow to register case after church burnt down by suspected Hindu extremists
A church in Puducherry in southern India was set ablaze recently, after upper-caste Hindu neighbours had objected to worship services in the area. Puducherry, formerly Pondicherry, was a French colonial settlement until 1954. Pastor David Santosham and members of the Bible Presbyterian church in Karaikal District left for home after . . . Read More

Indian Christians charged with ‘hurting religious sentiments’ by handing out Easter tracts

Indian Christians charged with ‘hurting religious sentiments’ by handing out Easter tracts
Four Christians, including the wife of a church leader, have been charged with “hurting religious sentiments” after they handed out Christian tracts during an Easter procession in India’s southern Telangana state. Rayapuri Jyothi, 38, Meena Kumari, 52, Mahima Kumari, 35 and Bagadam Sudhakar, 45, were taken into custody by police . . . Read More

Pro-Hindu BJP wins over Christian voters in northeast India

Christians gather for the general assembly of the National Council of Churches in India in Shillong, capital of the Christian-majority state of Meghalaya in the north-east. (May 2008)
India’s pro-Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is now the governing party in two Christian-dominated states in the northeast, following recent election successes in Nagaland and Meghalaya. But to do so, it had to betray its core values of Hindutva, according to John Dayal, former National President of the All India . . . Read More

India’s top Catholic on Hindutva attacks: ‘country being divided on basis of religious belief’

India’s top Catholic on Hindutva attacks: ‘country being divided on basis of religious belief’
The President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI), Cardinal Baselios Cleemis, has expressed a lack of trust in the government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, as the leader of the ruling BJP – known for pursuing a Hindu nationalistic agenda. “The country is being divided on the . . . Read More

Indian Christians faced almost as many attacks in first half of 2017 as all of 2016

Indian Christians faced almost as many attacks in first half of 2017 as all of 2016
In the first six months of 2017, Indian Christians were harassed, threatened or attacked for their faith in 410 reported incidents (248 in the first quarter) – almost as many as the total for the whole of 2016 (441). This is according to figures compiled by partners of Open Doors, . . . Read More

In India, one case of anti-Christian violence every day

Attacks on Christians in India were reported on an almost daily basis in 2015, according to a Christian advocacy group. “The country saw 355 incidents of violence, including 200 major incidents, during the last year,” Joseph Dias, convener of Mumbai-based Catholic Secular Forum, told World Watch Monitor. The forum’s report, . . . Read More