Beware of Religious goons posing as Government Agents,Chhattisgarh.
Pastor Mallikarjun Rao had a questionable encounter with an unusual visitor. He wrote to Persecution Relief seeking wisdom and direction about his experience. The following is a brief description of his letter.
Pastor Mallikarjun Rao lives in a district of Chhattisgarh, in eastern central India. He has been leading a Church called the ” ECCI “. The Church gathers together at a Christians house which is located in the township area.
Last Sunday, Pastor Mallikarjun Rao head home after a usual Sunday Worship Service. In a short while, an unfamiliar girl was at his doorstep. When the Pastor inquired about her visit, she mentioned that the government is conducting an economic survey, for which she required information from him. She then proceeded to ask for his mobile number, however, the Pastor who was not convinced, did not disclose any details to her. She eventually left but returned after a few days. Recognizing her, the Pastor decided to check the authenticity of her inquiry and asked her the her ID and more information about the economic census. Her ID stated that it was issued by the Economic Census Authority, however, it had expired and showed a validity until June 2019.
The girl claimed that she and a few others are going from door to door and conducting this survey. Once again, she requested for the Pastors name and phone number. Even though the Pastor was not completely convinced, he still gave her his mobile number and name, after which she left.
Sensing something amiss, Pastor Mallikarjun Rao immediately logged on to Google to seek more information. He found that the Economic Census was conducted in 2019 in India, for people who have shops or enterprises at home or have Income generating projects. It is conducted through self disclosure.
The Pastor vaguely remembered that the girl had not filled all the columns before she left. Hence, the Pastor feared that it could be some kind of conspiracy involving acquiring information about the Christian minority in India. The Pastor previously served with an organization but for the past 2 years he has been independently ministering and serving God’s Kingdom.
India has quickly earned the title of being a nation that is intolerant towards religious minorities. The Hindu fundamentalists groups that fringe off the Pro-Hindu BJP government are leaving no stone unturned to saffronize the country. Lately we have had increased reports about these religious frauds who come disguised as charity worker or government agents and attempt to acquire personal and religious information which could later be used against the victim. Many youth, both male and female are brainwashed into believing that a true Indian Citizen has to be a Hindu and are recruited to conduct such fraudulent activities.
Pray that Christians across the country would be wise and discerning in such matters. Pray that God’s protection would cover every Christian who have been victim to such hoaxes. Pray that the Religious fundamentalists who are involved in such operations would come to know Jesus as their personal Lord and Saviour.
In Psalm 144: 1, David acknowledges Gods Guidance and leading in his life, he says, “Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle.” As we go through challenging times as a minority within our nation, let us trust God like David did, to equip us to be wise, strong and courageous, even in the face of Death.
Between January 2016 to December 2019, there has been a rise of 59.6% of Hate Crimes against Christians all across the country. In 2019 alone, Persecution Relief has recorded the maximum number of 527 cases compared to 447 cases in 2018, 440 in 2017 and 330 in 2016.
What stands out amongst the Hate Crimes in India is that 4 Christians were murdered in 2019. We recorded 199 incidents related to Threats, Intimidations & Harassments against Christians, 104 incidents of Church attacks, 85 incidents of Physical Violence reported which includes Women & Children, 100s of House Churches were forcefully closed down by Religious Fanatics and the local administrations.
The state of Uttar Pradesh has showed a shocking 179.4% leap in cases of Christian Persecution between 2016 to 2019! From 39 cases being reported in 2016, the number has sky rocketed to 109 cases in 2019 alone bringing the total count from across the country to 527 cases. Uttar Pradesh has proved to be the most hostile state in the country against Christians for the past 3 consecutive years. Tamil Nadu continues to rank as the second most hostile state in the country with 75 cases, followed by Karnataka with 32 cases, bringing the state of Maharashtra to number 4 with 31 cases and Bihar with 30 cases stands at number 5.
US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) ranked India’s persecution severity at “Tier 2” along with Iraq and Afghanistan. Over the past seven years, India has risen from No. 31 to No. 10 on Open Doors’ World Watch List, ranking just behind Iran in persecution severity.
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