The video below shows a Hindu leader and his followers threatening to use force to expel all Christians from India if they do not leave the country voluntarily.
The video, posted on May 26, shows Hindu leader Om Swami Maharaj and a group of around 20 people carrying placards and banners with pictures of Pope Francis, near the Sacred Heart Cathedral in New Delhi, reported Catholic news site UCAN.
In the video, Maharaj spread on the ground a banner featuring a picture of the pope and then, with several others, stomped on it. Slogans of “Pope Francis murdabad” (Down with Pope Francis) were shouted.
The Hindu leader accuses Indian Christians of promoting terrorism and Maoism and demands that they leave India. He adds that if Christians don’t exit voluntarily, they will be expelled by force.
According to the World Watch List, an analysis published 2019, by Open Doors USA documenting the persecution of Christians worldwide, India ranks 10th among top 50 Countries where it is most dangerous to be a Christian.
The blatant video has grabbed the attention of Christian groups in central India who have reported it to police, asking them to stop its circulation.
Richard James, spokesman for the Rashtriya Isai Mahasangh, the ecumenical national Christian forum based in the state of Madhya Pradesh, said the police have been alerted to the video.
“This kind of public display of hate toward any religious group or leader would not be allowed in a civilized society,” James said.
Jaideep Prasad, inspector general of police in Bhopal (capital of India’s Madhya Pradesh state), said that his officers would “not allow anyone to spread discord among people with such videos,” but the video has not yet been taken down.
According to Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas, secretary-general of the Indian Bishops’ Conference, the timing of the video is connected to a pastoral letter issued by an archbishop in Delhi. The letter was criticized by the leaders of the governing Hindu nationalist BJP, who said it compelled them to question the “patriotism” of Indian Christians.
Please continue to pray for these Indian Christians that their faith do not grow cold and that they be protected from harm.