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Five persecuted Christians in India arrested

May 16, 2023 by Tim Dustin in Persecuted Christians in India

Maya* and four others were arrested on April 27 in a small village in the district of Jaunpur. They were detained for allegedly violating a law in India which prohibits people from converting to a different faith. 

The Christians met together to pray over a land dispute one believer was facing. As they were praying, there was a sudden knock on the door. Before they could even answer it, the police barged in while a crowd of over a hundred stood outside.

The police questioned the Christians as to why they were meeting. As Maya and the others explained themselves, the mob outside demanded the police search the house.

The police ransacked the house and confiscated the group’s Bibles as proof of their conversion to Christianity. They arrested the believers and took them to the local police station—though they still didn’t even understand why they were being arrested.

“We only met to pray for each other and to encourage one another in our struggles. It was not even a regular prayer fellowship,” Maya explains to Global Christian Relief.

Anti-conversion laws in India prohibit conversion by misrepresentation, allurement, use of threat or force, undue influence, coercion or marriage. Being found guilty of breaking one of these laws comes with it one to five years in prison, as well as fines up to 15,000 rupees (approximately 180 US dollars).

The five persecuted Christians provided bail and have since been released from jail.

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A local Indian pastor expressed his concern at the rise of persecution in his area. While speaking to GCR, he said, New believers are not able to come to church because of fear of being attacked violently. Some action should be taken against the perpetrators who falsely accuse Christians and harass them unnecessarily. 

The pastor said that it is only because of God’s grace that people like him can continue to serve in ministry: “We can carry on only because the Lord is with us. Otherwise, these people will not let us serve God. We need a lot of prayers to carry on the Lord’s work.”

We previously shared with our readers that violent Hindu mobs have left thousands of believers homeless in the states of Chhattisgarh and Manipur, India. Are you able to help us provide for our persecuted brothers and sisters? Your gift today could provide the relief so many desperately need, including Bibles and discipleship materials, food, medicine, shelter, hygiene supplies and more. Give now.

And please continue praying for these five and the countless others who must live out their faith in the shadow of such unjust laws. Pray they will find the courage necessary to worship, as well as the boldness to live out their faith. Pray those who would harm and arrest the faithful will instead be touched by God’s amazing love and kindness. And earnestly pray the government will see the injustice in these anti-conversion laws and correct the situation.

Lord, please wrap Your arms around our dear brothers and sisters in India.

*Representative name used to preserve security

About The Author
Tim Dustin is a staff writer for Global Christian Relief, a nonprofit Christian ministry that works to strengthen persecuted believers and raise awareness regarding Christian persecution. For more information, visit our website at GlobalChristianRelief.org.