2 Reverends are ministering in Haldwani, Nainital, Uttarakhand, among the Kanjar tribal people for the last 2 years.
The Village Pradhan has been harassing and threatening the local Christian families who gather and worship together every Sunday, to renounce Christ and return to their former religion. Local villagers along with religious fundamentalists are visiting these Christian homes and threatening them with dire consequences. They have also been threatened with being driven out from the village altogether.
The villagers are also on the lookout for the men of God who had ministered to the Christians, to harm them. Persecution Relief spoke, counselled and encouraged them in the Lord. They are naturally demoralized to visit the village under such a formidable climate.
The Kanjar Community council is very strong, and exercises a strong hold over the community. This caste council resolves disputes within the community, and head by a mukhiya or chieftain, who is seen as the leader of the Kanjar. The religious fanatics use them to intimidate and attack the Christians.
The traditional occupation of the Kanjar tribe was hunting, but over time, many took to agriculture. They still depend on the forest, extracting roots of the khas grass, and collecting reeds from banks of the rivers. The community is also involved in tanning of skins out of which drums are made and sold. Many urban Kanjar are now wage labourers and involved in rickshaw pulling.
India is a secular nation where the faiths of all, including religious minorities, are supposed to be protected. Unfortunately, the reality on the ground is that religious minorities, particularly Christians, are facing increasingly violent challenges to practice their faith freely.
Church, please pray for this entire village to come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
Pray for the Christians who are in a state of fear, to find strength and courage in the presence of danger. Help them to find rest in His shadow, to live in the spiritual shelter Jesus provides.
Pray also for the persecutors – that God would break the hardness of their hearts and for all to come to knowledge of the living God.
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