According to a recent report by human rights groups in India, more than 300 incidents of Christian persecution have taken place in the country in just the first nine months of 2021.
The report, titled “Christians Under Attack in India,” was published by United Against Hate, the United Christian Forum and the Association of Protection of Civil Rights. The groups also held a joint press conference in Delhi last week detailing the findings.
“The brutal attacks have taken place across 21 states. Most of the incidents are taking place in northern states, and 288 instances were of mob violence,” A.C. Michael, the National Coordinator of the United Christian Forum, said at the press conference.
As reported by International Christian Concern, the continued attacks on believers may result in the highest incidents of Christian persecution recorded in a single year.
“This is a scary situation, raising critical questions over the role and the position of the National Human Rights Commission and the Home [Interior] Ministry and their failures in stopping this violence,” Michael added. “Over 49 FIRs [police complaints] have been registered, too, but no substantial action has taken place.”
India is ranked 10 on Open Doors USA’s 2021 World Watch List of countries where Christians experience persecution.
Since the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party took power in 2014, Christians and other religious minorities have faced increasing incidents of persecution. According to The Christian Post, Hindus comprise about 80 percent of radical nationalists, while Christians only make up 2.3 percent of the population.
Across India, nine states have enacted anti-conversion laws which have permitted radical Hindus to persecute Christians with impunity.
Earlier this month, a mob of some 200 radical Hindu nationalists ravaged a local church, which left at least three Christian women seriously injured. The attackers, who were associated with the Bharatiya Janata Party, claimed that the church was “illegally” converting Hindus to Christianity.
Michael, however, denied the mob’s claims of forced conversions.
“The fears which are being fueled of Christians converting Hindus are baseless,” he contended.