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A night of violence sees three churches and a Christian centre attacked in one Indian state


19 May 2015

Shattering windows and destroying the interiors of the buildings, Hindu radicals attacked three churches in Indore, in India’s Madhya Pradesh state, during the night of 12 May. On the same night but in another part of the state, Hindu radicals threw bricks at a Christian centre for children with disabilities. “Thanks to the Lord’s Divine Providence,” said one of the centre’s leaders, “no one was injured and the children were not present at that time.”

Barnabas Fund helps to reconstruct church buildings in India
Barnabas Fund helps to reconstruct church buildings in India

In one Indore church, vandals broke the PA system and other items inside the building. In another, they threw burning rags into the building in an attempt to set it on fire. Police were immediately alerted and managed to put out the flames. And at a third church in Indore, radicals threw stones at the exterior of the building, shattering its windows.

Hindu nationalist group Sanskritik Jagran Manch is suspected to be behind the attacks. Members of the group had threatened “direct action” against the president of the opposition Congress Party, Sonia Gandhi, who was set to open a Christian orphanage in the city. The orphanage was officially launched the day after the attacks.

Christians running a centre for disabled children in Pipaldhar, also in Madhya Pradesh state, have said that they are scared after an attack on the building at 3.15 am on 12 May. “Everyone was asleep,” said of the centre’s leaders, “when suddenly heavy bricks were thrown on the roof of the house and fell into the room where we slept.”

Condemning last week’s attacks, Sajan George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), said: “The authors of the crime show a lack of morality. Their night-time raid reflects the darkness of their minds and hearts.”