10

India Facts

Score: 83 / 100
Region: Asia
Persecution Type: Religious Nationalism
Persecution Level: Extreme
Population: 1,354,052,000
Christians: 65,061,000
Main Religion: Hinduism
Government: Federal Parliamentary Republic
Leader: Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Profile of Persecution

Violence 91%
Church Life 79%
National Life 89%
Community Life 81%
Family Life 77%
Private Life 77%

Continued violence against Christians and churches

Since the current ruling party took power in 2014, attacks have increased, and Hindu radicals believe they can attack Christians with no consequences. As a result, Christians have been targeted by Hindu nationalist extremists more and more each year. The view of the nationalists is that to be Indian is to be Hindu, so any other faith—including Christianity—is considered non-Indian. Additionally, in some regions of the country, converts to Christianity from Hinduism experience extreme persecution, discrimination and violence.

How Christians are suffering

Because radical Hindu nationalists view followers of Jesus as alien to the nation, all Christians in India are suffering persecution. Driven by a desire to cleanse their country from Islam and Christianity, nationalists do not shy away from using extensive violence to achieve their goals.

Converts to Christianity from Hinduism bear the brunt of the Christian persecution in India and are constantly under pressure by the state, their community and their families to return to Hinduism (especially via campaigns knows as ghar wapsi, which means “homecoming”). These Christians are often physically assaulted and sometimes killed.

Examples

On June 19, 2018, five Christian women (aged 20 to 35) were performing a street play in Jharkhand when they were abducted and then gang raped in a forest. Police stated that the assault was also allegedly filmed on cell phones.

On January 20, 2018, the body of Pastor Gideon Periyaswamy in Adaiyalachery (Kanchipuram District, Tamil Nadu) was found hung from the thatched roof of his house, a week after he complained to police about opposition from radical Hindus.

On December 14, 2017, a carol-singing group belonging to St. Ephrem’s Theological College in Satna, Madhya Pradesh, was detained by police following a complaint from radical Hindu activists who accused the group of being involved in religious conversion–a charge often leveled against Christians to target them.

 

Pray for India

  • Pray for Christian converts from Hinduism who are forcefully pressured to return to their national religion.
  • Pray with Christians in India for God’s provision and protection as they preach the gospel in places with anti-conversion laws.
  • Pray for Christian girls placed under house arrest by their families because of their faith. Pray they would be encouraged in their faith and that their families would come to know the Lord.
  • Pray for the government of India, that they would open to religious liberty.

Stories from India

January 27, 2019

India Cracks Top 10–Why the Country Has ‘No Room’ for Christians

The world's second most populous country is now the 10th most dangerous country for Christians.

+ READ MORE

January 16, 2019

The 10 Most Dangerous Places to Be a Christian

In the top 50 countries where it's most dangerous to be a Christian, more than 245 million Christians face persecution.…

+ READ MORE

January 16, 2019

5 Major Trends Influencing Global Christian Persecution

The 2019 World Watch List report reveals five major trends that were significant role players in the persecution of Christians…

+ READ MORE