Friday, December 2, 2011

Indian converts from Islam beaten after baptism

Seven Christians were detained and beaten
by police after a video of their baptisms
was viewed by a religious law official. 
Christian workers feared arrest after Muslim leaders alleged that seven Christians were “lured” from Islam, reports Compass Direct News. The names of the converts and their pastors were obtained from a video officials watched of the men being baptised. The video was later posted to YouTube.

Police in Muslim-majority Kashmir Valley detained the youth and beat them. They asked them if they had been offered money to convert. Pastor Khanna, who pastors the church where the men were baptized, says all of them were willing to sign affidavits declaring they were not lured.

There is nothing in India’s constitution that forbids propagation of the Gospel or conversion.

“If it was meant to be a secret or illegal activity, we wouldn’t have allowed cameras,” said Khanna. There were multiple people recording the event.

The mufti (India’s highest religious law official) was the one who complained to the police about the alleged “luring” of the former Muslims. He told media the video was definitive evidence that the men had been lured to Christian, even though the video only shows the baptism.

There are only a few hundred Christians in Kashmir. Tensions between Muslims and Christians in the area have escalated as of late. Last year, violence erupted after a video of U.S. pastor Terry Jones burning a Qur’an was shown on TV. Churches and schools in the area have been vandalized and burned down since.

To read the full report click here. To learn more about persecution in India, please read our India Country Report.

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