Christian fast-prayer meet attacked in Chhattisgarh village
By Matters India Reporter
New Delhi: Alleged rightwing Hindu radicals on December 6 attacked a group of Christians who were on fast and prayer at a village in central-eastern India.
The attack occurred at Tarra, a village near Ranjim, a town in the Gariaband district of Chhattisgarh state in central India.
The attackers, alleged members of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and Bajrang Dal, damaged cars and bikes and destroyed property worth hundreds of thousands of rupees,” said Shibu Thomas of “Persecution Relief,” a watchdog that monitors and documents attacks on Christians in India.
Thomas told Matters India that the Christians had completed 200 days of prayer under the leadership of Pastor Lakhchan Sahu. At around noon, more than a thousand people belonging to the RSS and Bajrang Dal groups stormed the prayer venue, he said quoting Pastor Sahu.
The pastor also said around 600 people, who were at prayer, dispersed in panic when the attack took place.
The radicals molested women and beat up men, Thomas alleged.
The attackers also prevented Christians from Marga Parra village from attending the prayer meeting.
Pastor Sahu, who became a Christian nine years ago, said they suffered a loss of 400,000 rupees in the attack.
Rajim is 45 km southeast of Raipur, capital of Chhattisgarh. Its nearby important city is Mahasamund.
The state is ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party, the political arm of radical Hindu groups.