Pastor Harish Chandra has been ministering at Khutar village, Kumbhiya District Shahjahanpur, Uttar Pradesh for several years now.
On Sunday, 13th January, just before Worship could begin, a group of 8 young men, approached Pastor Harish and asked if they could also participate in the worship service. The Pastor, though skeptical, invited them into the Church for the service.
As the worship service progressed, Pastor proceeded to share the gospel. Suddenly, the meeting was interrupted by a mob of local villagers, who gatecrashed into the Church, disrupting the Service. They alleged that Pastor was indulging in ‘conversion activities’, a created a furore in the Church.
Unfazed by their threats and allegations, Pastor boldly testified that he had lost 2 of his own sons to sickness. Devastated by the loss and in the pursuit of peace and rest, he confessed that he found Jesus Christ, who gave him a life of peace.
In midst of this hot debate, someone dialed #100 and the Police arrived at the Church. The religious fanatics, after making their false allegations, fled the scene.
After bringing order to the Church, Police asked Pastor Harish to visit the Khutar Police station at around 4 pm. When Pastor arrived at 4 pm, he was surprised to find that the same hostile mobhad arrived earlier than him and mobbed the Police Station.
With absolutely no shred of evidence to support their allegation that Pastor was converting people, through allurement or fraud, except ‘based on the lies of local people’ and ‘extremists’ – the Police subjected Pastor to questioning, releasing him at around 6.00 pm.
The Police had asked him to report at the Police Station the following day as well. Pray for Pastor, his family and the congregation who have to endure a time of anxiety and fear, while the Police intimidate and question Pastor.
In Uttar Pradesh, the scale of “crack down” against the Christian minority community has been unprecedented, with tighter surveillance of churches and on those who continue to worship a western God, Jesus Christ.
Persecution Relief has recorded more than 129 persecution incidents in Uttar Pradesh, this year, the most hostile among 29 states. Across the country in India, the doors of a multitude of Churches have been sealed and scores arrested on false charges of indulging in conversion activities.
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