by Jordan Hilger, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) - Human rights groups and groups that monitor persecution worldwide presented statistics to congress Wednesday testifying to the deterioration of the situation for Christians in India.
Members of International Christian Concern and Alliance Defending Freedom claimed that over 1,400 incidents of violence against Christians had occurred since 2014, the year Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) rose to power.
“Cases such as these are becoming commonplace in India and are largely fueled by rhetoric of BJP and other [Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh] officials,” Matias Pertulla of International Christian Concern said in his opening statement of the two major political wings of the Hindu nationalist movement.
Sean Nelson of Alliance Defending Freedom International explained that the problem escalated again in 2019 when every month saw more incidents of persecution against Christians than over the previous year’s same month.
Perhaps most remarkable of all was a survey presented by International Christian Concern in which Indian Christians were asked to rate their feelings about their level of safety, with 1 corresponding to “most safe” and 5 to “least safe,” to which 68.8% of respondents responded with a 5.
“As Americans of Indian origin who realize the idea of a democracy, we are sounding the alarm bells loud and clear,” said Sunita Viswanath of Hindus for Human Rights. “This is an emergency. [Hinduism] has been hijacked by those who have completely rejected its inclusive and egalitarian heart.”
India rose to number 10 on Open Doors USA’s World Watch List during the BJP’s first stint in power, and looks slated to rise even higher as Indian government officials reportedly mull a bill that would ban religious conversions nationwide.