ADVERTISING
 
Monday, June 25   Sign in or Register
 
Evangelical Focus
 
Flecha
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
FOLLOW US ON
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud
 

Newsletter
Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.
 
 

POLL
Migration
Do Christians in your country have a Bible-based understanding of how migrants should be treated?




SEE MORE POLLS
 

 
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED



Religious freedom
 

Officials and Police halt worship in 10 churches in India

“It is a well-planned conspiracy against the Christian community”, pastor Johnson Sathyanathan, president of the Synod of Pentecostal Churches of Coimbator, says.

AUTHOR Morning Star News NEW DELHI 03 NOVEMBER 2017 17:35 h GMT+1
Marudamalai Temple in Coimbatore District Tamil Nadu. India. / Wikimedia.

Officials and police in Tamil Nadu state, India, have ordered 10 churches to discontinue worship services, sources said.



Hindu extremists compelled state officials and police to issue orders to the churches in Coimbatore District to stop worship unless they obtain permission from the collector’s office, and the extremists intend to target 20 others in the same way, church leaders said.



“A WELL-PLAN CONSPIRANCY”



It is a well-planned conspiracy against the Christian community, as the Hindu extremists know that it is not easy to approach the collector’s office for such permissions,” pastor Johnson Sathyanathan, president of the Synod of Pentecostal Churches of Coimbatore, told Morning Star News. “The time to get such approvals can stretch from a year and a half to many more years.”



The district revenue officer (Tehsildar) told church leaders that orders against six churches were issued on the complaint of members of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), a Hindu nationalist, paramilitary organization widely regarded as the parent organization of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.



Orders were issued in one case based on a complaint by the Hanuman Sena, a fairly new Hindu extremist group.



A Christian delegation met the minister of Internal Affairs of Tamil Nadu early last week and expressed concern and fear about the recent notices. The state minister on Oct. 24 called on the deputy superintendent of police and the local Member of the Legislative Assembly of Sulur to look into the matter and take steps to ensure that the worship services can resume, Pastor Sathyanathan said.



 



10 CHURCHES AFFECTED IN THE LAST 2 MONTHS



Altogether there are 10 churches that have been directly affected in the last two months,” he said. “They are all residents of the area, and people have never had trouble with these churches before. These pastors have been doing ministry for many years now.”



Besides the six churches, another congregation, an Assemblies of God Church in Thennampalayam, was first targeted during its Vacation Bible School this summer, when the members of RSS attacked its van transporting children, assaulting three young people.



The revenue officer has closed down the church based on a complaint by the RSS, saying the pastor must secure permission from the collector to continue worshipping.



The pastor has been leading the church at its present location for more than five years.



 



OTHER SHUT- DOWNS



In Myleripalayam, a police inspector called the pastor of an independent fellowship, Solomon Raja, following a complaint by members of the Hanuman Sena, and forced him to sign documents stating that he would “obtain proper permission” to continue worship services.



“This happened with Solomon on Sept. 1, and since then no worship service has taken place in his church,” Pastor Sathyanathan told Morning Star News.



In Mathampalayam, where pastor Vinod Kumar had constructed a small hall for church services, about 25 RSS members on Oct. 15 disrupted a church service and called police.



“The inspector deliberately vacated the church, and Kumar was ordered to stop conducting worship in the future,” Pastor Sathyanathan said.



Though no case has been registered against Kumar, he has been threatened with warnings to halt worship services or bear the consequences, he said.



In Kalampalayam, police accompanied by 20 RSS members approached a church leader identified only as Pastor Charles and ordered him to close down services until he obtained permission from the collector, Pastor Sathyanathan said.



In Sulur, pastor Selva Singh of Sultanpet has filed a case with police against the notice the revenue officer issued to him. A court has granted him one month’s permission to continue the regular church service, but with a condition that there should be no use of amplifiers during the service. The permission will be voided if there are complaints.



The court instructed Pastor Singh to obtain permission from local officials within one month. Pastor Singh has been leading the area church for more than 10 years.



 



DEMAND TO RE-OPEN CHURCHES



Nearly 500 Christians approached the district sub-collector and the superintendent of police on Oct. 11 and submitted a memorandum demanding protection and appealing for the churches to be re-opened.



Pastor Sathyanathan, who participated in the protest, told Morning Star News that the city superintendent of police flatly refused any support or action.



They said that they can do nothing about it, and why should we create unnecessary trouble, that instead we should go ahead and get legal permission for our churches,” he said. “We had organized a day of silent protest on Oct. 21, but we were denied permission to carry it out, as they stated that it was a law-and-order situation.”



Clarifying reports that 30 churches had been targeted, Pastor Sathyanathan said Hindu extremists had yet to take action against 20 of them.



“The Hindu extremists have openly threatened Christians that they are going to do the same in 20 more churches of the area that they have done to these 10,” he said.



 



INDIAN GOVERNMENT EMBOLDENS CHRISTAN PERSECUTION



Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took power in May 2014, the hostile tone of his National Democratic Alliance government, led by the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), against non-Hindus has emboldened Hindu extremists in several parts of the country to attack Christians, religious rights advocates say.



India ranked 15th on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2017 World Watch List of the countries where Christians experience the most persecution.


 

 


0
COMMENTS

    If you want to comment, or

 



 
 
YOUR ARE AT: - - Officials and Police halt worship in 10 churches in India
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
AUDIOS Audios
 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
Kathy Bryan: Online sex trafficking in the USA Kathy Bryan: Online sex trafficking in the USA

“Prostitution is nobody’s dream,  it’s a very traumatic lifestyle”, says Kathy Bryan, director of the Elevate Academy. She mentors former victims.

 
Christians in politics? Christians in politics?

What is the role of Christians serving in politics? An interview with Auke Minnema, the new General Director of the European Christian Political Movement (ECPM).

 
Michael Ramsden: Communicating the Gospel in today’s societies Michael Ramsden: Communicating the Gospel in today’s societies

RZIM International Director Michael Ramsden responds to questions about the secularisation of Europe, the role of Christians in public leadership and the new ‘culture of victimism’.

 
Michael Schluter: Relationships are the key to build Europe Michael Schluter: Relationships are the key to build Europe

The economist summarises the manifesto “Confederal Europe: Strong Nations, Strong Union” and explains why personal relationships should be at the centre of our economy, education and democracy. 

 
Efraim Tendero: Relationship with Roman Catholicism and other current issues Efraim Tendero: Relationship with Roman Catholicism and other current issues

The World Evangelical Alliance Secretary General participated in the Italian Evangelical Alliance assembly (Rome, 8-9 April). In this interview with Evangelical Focus, Bp Tendero talks about the need to listen to local churches and to face challenges like the refugee crisis and climate change. 

 
Greg Pritchard: European Leadership Forum Greg Pritchard: European Leadership Forum

Pritchard explains the vision of ELF, comments on the 2015 event in Poland and reflects on what it means to have an "evangelical identity".

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
Analysing current issues in the light of the Bible Analysing current issues in the light of the Bible

At the 2018 Apologetics Forum in Comarruga (Spain), Michael Ramsden, Pablo Martinez, Ruth Valerio and José de Segovia analysed how society and the Bible approach the issues of personal identity, integrity, sexuality, pop culture, and environmental care.

 
European “Bridges to Inclusion” gathering 2018, in Riga European “Bridges to Inclusion” gathering 2018, in Riga

The network of Christian ministries working for the inclusion of people with disabilities, celebrated its tenth continental meeting in Latvia with the participation of 12 countries.

 

 
Coexistence in the church - a model for society Coexistence in the church - a model for society

“Gospel, identity and coexistence” were the themes of the General Assembly of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance. Two days in Palma de Mallorca to reflect about the role of evangelical churches in society.

 
'Ungi kulimi changana' 'Ungi kulimi changana'

Educator and journalist Jordi Torrents shares images of the Sekeleka social centre in Mozambique. About 50 children live there, many with some kind of disability. All photos were taken with permission.

 
The President in an evangelical church on Christmas Eve The President in an evangelical church on Christmas Eve

For the first time, the President of Portugal attended a worship service in an evangelical church. It was in Sintra, on Christmas Eve.

 
Stamps to commemorate the Reformation Stamps to commemorate the Reformation

Poland, Lithuania, Namibia and Brazil are some of the countries that have issued special stamps on the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s 95 theses.

 
VIDEO Video
 
Trailer: “The Peace Between” Trailer: “The Peace Between”

A film about the experience of refugees in Europe. Churches, small groups and individuals are encouraged to use it during Refugee Week: 17-24 June.

 
How can churches better support singles? How can churches better support singles?

Tina Tschage, on some areas in which other Christians can encourage singles.

 
The Church of Scotland debates historic doctrines The Church of Scotland debates historic doctrines

The Kirk has begun official procedures to investigate the status and the role of the Westminster Confession of Faith within its denomination.

 
Be safe on social media Be safe on social media

A video about the way traffickers target teenage girls online, produced by anti-slavery gorup Abolishion.

 
In Mission In Mission

A 360º lyric video about how all followers of Jesus Christ are called to serve God. Duo in Spanish (Alex Sampedro) and Portuguese (Marcos Martins).

 
Heart Heart

A short animation film by Swiss cartoonist Alain Auderset tells the message of the Bible in four minutes.

 
Philip Yancey interview Philip Yancey interview

An 8-minute interview with Philip Yancey on the role of Christians in a secularised society. Recorded in Madrid, September 2016.

 
An interview with Prof. John Lennox An interview with Prof. John Lennox

New atheism, the definition of "faith", Christianity in Europe, the role of the Bible in mission, and the need to listen more. An exclusive interview recorded at "Forum Apologética" (Tarragona, Spain) in May 2016.

 
 
Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube
 
 
WE RECOMMEND
 
PARTNERS
 

 
AEE
EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.
 

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.