Pastor Mallik Arjun knew something was wrong when he received a call from the mobile phone of his friend and fellow pastor in Gadag District, Karnataka state – but it was a stranger on the other end of the line.
The stranger told him that Pastor Nagesh Naik was being held at a hotel near Korlahalli village and to come and find him. It was a Sunday evening, Feb. 3, after Pastor Arjun's colleague had led a home worship of the Gypsy Mission church in a neighboring village.
"I went with three church members on two motorbikes, and we were looking for such hotel all through the way and could not find one," Pastor Arjun, of the Indian Pentecostal Church, told Morning Star News. "Finally we found a mob swelling up in a temple, and that was where they kept him – and as soon as we reached the temple, they accused us of forceful conversion and started to attack me, Pastor Nagesh and the other three Christians." more >>
A stampede in India on Sunday resulted in the death of 36 victims, predominately older women, as millions rushed to take part in the world's largest religious festival at a temporary city in Allahabad, northern India.
The tragedy reportedly occurred at the train station located in the northern city of Allahabad, where a stampede took place as thousands scurried to board a train that would take them to the site of the Kumbh Mela festival, a two-month -long festival that takes place at a makeshift city featuring a long, sandy bank that represents the intersection of the Ganges, the Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati rivers.
Sunday was said to be one of the most holy days to bathe in the rivers as part of the festival, and the temporary city, which is constructed four times every 12 years for the festival, saw an attendance of 30 million Hindu pilgrims in one day. more >>
Hindu extremist attacks on Christians in Maharashtra state could expand even as violence elsewhere in India grows in areas where extremist groups had not been so active, Christian leaders said.
Ram Puniyani of the All India Secular Forum said at press conference in Mumbai this month that Maharashtra is vulnerable to increased attacks on Christians after "a decade of heightened Hindutva [Hindu nationalism], especially targeting tribal and Adivasi [indigenous] communities, as they are easy targets, with little fear of retaliation."
The Catholic Secular Forum (CSF) released preliminary results of a study on Feb. 1, with Christian leaders saying that persecution is not increasing in comparison with previous years but is appearing in new areas. While the perennially troublesome Karnataka state last year saw the most attacks on Christians with 67, followed by Madhya Pradesh with 28, four new states entered the top 20: More attacks from Hindu extremists took place in Tamil Nadu, Assam, Mizoram and Goa than in previous years. more >>
The Christian Post recently had the opportunity to travel to India to observe the work Christians are doing throughout the country to help empower a societal group that has been neglected for the better part of recorded human history. This is the third part of a four part series detailing their work.
"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me," Galatians 2:20.
Girls born into Dalit families in India have few options available to them and a large majority can expect three outcomes – death, trafficked or forced to marry. more >>
The president of the Gospel for Asia mission organization recently called the conditions for women in India "a horrendous evil that is worsening" after authorities arrested six men in the north of the country for the alleged gang-rape of a woman traveling on a bus, just weeks after the gang-rape and subsequent death of a 23-year-old student in New Delhi rocked the country.
"This just shows the wickedness of the human heart. I pray the government will take strong action to protect the innocent. We all grieve for what is happening. God have mercy on us," K. P. Yohannan, president of Gospel for Asia, a mission organization working in South Asia, said in a Jan. 15 press release.
The Associated Press has reported that on Jan. 11, a 29-year-old woman was traveling via bus to visit family in the Punjab region of Northern India when she was taken and allegedly raped by the bus driver, conductor, and five other suspects. more >>
A 23-year-old victim of an extremely brutal gang-rape in Delhi, who died last weekend and was thus far known as "India's Daughter" among other pseudonyms, was identified for the first time by a British newspaper with the consent of her father, who wants the world to know her real name.
Jyoti Singh Pandey is her real name, the victim's father, identified as Badri Singh Pandey, told The Sunday People. "We want the world to know her real name. My daughter didn't do anything wrong, she died while protecting herself," he was quoted as saying on Saturday.
"I am proud of her. Revealing her name will give courage to other women who have survived these attacks. They will find strength from my daughter," said the father, who was interviewed by the newspaper in his ancestral village of Billia in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. more >>