India: Hindus attack Christian families for their faith and force them to flee village

June 14, 2021

Many Hindus believe that conversion to Christianity is an attack on their culture and way of life, and an imminent threat to both, despite the fact that Christianity has been a presence in India since the days of St. Thomas the Apostle. Instances such as the one described below, which involved Christians who converted fourteen years ago, are the result.

In India, as in so many other nations, the persecution of Christians continues to become more commonplace and aggressive by the day, while authorities do little or nothing to stop it, or sometimes even actively abet it.

For previous coverage of the persecution of Christians in India, see here.

“Hindus force Christians to flee Indian village,”by Bijay Kumar Minj, UCA News, June 13, 2021:

Police in the eastern Indian state of Odisha have filled a first information report after Hindus attacked Christian families for their faith and excommunicated them from their village.

A radical group destroyed the houses of Christians in Sikapai village of Rayagada district and chased them from the village on June 8, according to Father Purushottam Nayak, a priest of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar Archdiocese.

The Christians are staying in a thatched house in a nearby forest, he said.

“The Christians filed a report at Kalyansingpur police station and it is under investigation. The village is dominated by 32 Hindu families and there are only eight Christian families,” Father Nayak told UCA News on June 10.

He quoted Pastor Upajukta Singh as saying that the radical group could not tolerate the presence of Christian families in Sikapai and were jealous of their progress.

Pastor Singh said the Hindus had previously humiliated some Christian women when they went to fetch water. They even broke the bore well, forcing the women to go home empty-handed.

The cycles of violence and hatred in Rayagada are ominous signs of bigotry

“Despite the threats, Christians here are still firm in their faith and have been practicing Christianity for the last 14 years,” he said.

Nori Konjaka, one of the Christians in Sikapai, said that “the attackers can destroy our homes but not our belief in Lord Jesus Christ.”

Sajan K. George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians, told UCA News that Rayagada district is a new crucible to experiment with anti-Christian violence.

“The cycles of violence and hatred in Rayagada are ominous signs of bigotry. We urge the Odisha chief minister to take visible action to curb the lumpen elements in our society for the safety and security of all sections of society,” the Christian lay leader said….