India: Christians persecuted even during lockdown in 2020

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) - The Evangelical Fellowship of India (EFI) has reported that, even in the midst of coronavirus lockdowns affecting the whole country for months, there were over 300 incidents of religious persecution against Christians in India last year, International Christian Concern said. In its report, EFI noted that Christian persecution has more than doubled since Indian Prime Minister Narendra Damodardas Modi and his right-wing nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power in 2014.

According to EFI, 2020 saw 327 recorded incidents of persecution against Indian Christians on the grounds of their faith. At least five Christians were murdered and six church buildings were destroyed in attacks.

EFI also reported 26 cases in which Christian communities were subject to social boycotting – shunning – by their non-Christian neighbors, ICC said.

Documenting the upward trend of violent religious intolerance since the BJP came to power, EFI recorded 147 violent attacks on Christians in 2014 and 366 reported violent attacks in 2019, ICC said.

ICC further notes that the incidents reported by EFI likely only constitute a part of the actual number of persecution cases. “Most incidents go unreported due to fear of reprisal and lack of confidence in India’s justice system,” ICC said.