Law abiding citizens vilified and discriminated, Uttar Pradesh
We received a call on Persecution Relief Toll Free No:1800-1234-462 from Sadhana Ranjan, who is a Social Worker, working for the upliftment of underprivileged women. She also runs St. Xavier’s School in Khalilabad city of Sant Kabir Nagar district of Uttar Pradesh.
Originally from Maharashtra, Sadhana informed Persecution Relief, that she had been running a school with around 300 children from Nursery to 8th Standard and registered with the Uttar Pradesh Government. The School is currently run in a rented property. Recently, Sadhana has been asked by the Owner, to vacate the School premises at very short notice, maintaining that the owner was instigated and put under pressure by religious fanatics, to get the School to vacate.
Sadhana is also involved in running a House Church for the past 10 years, in Khalilabad village around 40 kms away. The Church was pastored by Pastor Mubhanesh Naik, a young Pastor, of around 30 years. However, Pastor had been in recent weeks, threatened and harassed and was reluctant to continue serving at the village.
The ‘House Church’ was meeting at a Usha Devi’s house. With the recent widespread attack on Christians and unleashing of terror by religious fanatics, Usha Devi was apprehensive and refused permission to use her residence for Church meetings.
Many Christians like Sadhana are clueless where to turn when they are confronted with these unreasonable fanatics who take the law into their own hands with impunity; misrepresenting facts and giving a communal colour to every incident.
Sadhana has bought a plot of land with her life savings and wants to build a School and a Chapel. Pray that God will provide her with the resources to complete her aspiration of building a school for underprivileged children.
Intolerance towards Christians in Uttar Pradesh is spiraling upward and religious freedom is pulverized by fanatical elements. The State continues to witness intense communal violence, polarizing the societies, on the allegation that they are involved in ‘religious conversion activities.
It is evident that fanatics are intentionally whipping up hostility against Christians for political gain. Christians are afraid to go to church for fear of physical attacks. It is also a disgrace for the dignity of women, who were victimized in the attack and beaten. Several Churches are forcibly closed and in many Church premises, Police are stationed at the entrance of ‘houses of worship’, preventing people to enter the Church.
In 2018, Persecution Relief has recorded 477 incidents of hate-crimes against Christians. Uttar Pradesh recorded 129 incidents.
In the first eight months of 2019, we have recorded 301 incidents of hate crimes, with 69 cases from Uttar Pradesh alone.
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