Radical Hindu nationalists brutally attack Christian community in India
Radicals use extreme violence to make village “Christian-free”
08/11/2021 Washington DC (International Christian Concern) – International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that a Christian community in the Indian state of Chhattisgarh was brutally attacked by a mob of radical Hindu nationalists over the weekend. The attack left nine seriously injured, three of whom are currently hospitalized in critical condition.
On Saturday, November 6, a mob of 50 radical Hindu nationalists attacked 14 Christian homes in the village of Metapal, located in the Dantewada district. Local Christians report that the crowd was led by four men named Joga, Lakhma, Magda and Sukka. The mob has gone from house to house, attacking Christians to make Metapal a “without christian” town.
Armed with fists, wooden batons and other objects, the extremists beat the Christians of Metapal, including women and children. The attack left nine Christians seriously injured with broken bones, dislocated joints and head injuries.
“Santu, a teenager, was carried by four people to the hospital like a corpse,Attack survivor Pastor Susheel Kumar told the ICC. “He suffered multiple fractures to his legs and hand.“
Following the attack, Mogadi Madkami, Santu Madkami and Hidma Podiyami were taken to Dantewada district hospital where they remain in critical condition. The police recorded a first information report (FIR n Â° 22/2021) against 15 members of the crowd; however, no arrests have been made to date.
“There was intense opposition in the village against people practicing Christianity,â, Explained Pastor Kumar. “These Christians have been threatened several times in the past. Last year, three families fled the village after being attacked by right-wing groups. They never returned to the village.“
“This is not an isolated incident,Another Christian leader, who requested anonymity, told ICC. “Christians across the state face intense pressure from militant religious groups. Christians are not free to exercise their faith in the same way as Hindus. We want the government to treat us fairly and without bias.“
Across India, attacks against Christians and their places of worship are being reported with greater numbers and severity. Recently, a report by the United Christian Forum documented more than 300 attacks on Christians that took place in the first nine months of 2021. Without significant intervention from government authorities, it is likely that 2021 will be the worst year on record. for Christian persecution in India.
William Stark, ICC Regional Director for South Asia, said: âWe here at International Christian Concern are very concerned about the attack on the Christian community in Metapal. Violent attempts to make communities “Christian-free” must be stopped and punished if religious freedom is to be meaningful in India. Unfortunately, this attack is just one symptom of a larger problem in India. Religious intolerance and religiously motivated violence have become so normalized in India that we hear reports of multiple incidents every week. Strict measures must be taken against the perpetrators of this attack and stern statements must be made by Indian leaders to dispel the idea that a community could or should be cleansed from a particular religious community.“
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