By Open Doors 20 March 2024 4 MIN

Pray for India | 200-Strong Mob Attacks Church

Christians are in shock after a 200-strong mob attacked a church in Telangana State, India, leaving 22 Christians injured.

After the horrific attack, Open Doors local partners were able to speak with and minister to Nitish*, one of the local Christians in the community affected by the attack.

“That evening, around 30 believers were there in the church. The local villagers started arguments with believers on road widening, which has been an issue for just a few days after we started our church renovation work. Other shops were nearby, but they weren’t targeted for road widening; only the church property was. There was a demand to widen the road encroaching on the church’s land by eight feet.

“The argument became strong, and suddenly around 200 people barged into the church with hockey sticks, stones, and wooden sticks. When the believers tried to stop them, they beat them mercilessly and broke everything that was inside the church. Even children and women suffered injuries, and some men required 10 to 18 stitches to cover the injuries they sustained. It was so painful to see their situation.”   

Innocent Believers Arrested

Nitish added, “The believers did not do any harm, but still the police arrested five believers along with others. When we filed a case against the attackers, they filed a counter case on 26 believers under Section 307, which defines the offense of attempt to murder. The imprisoned believers were terrified and forced to sign some documents in favor of the attackers. So, the attackers got bail and were released from prison immediately, whereas the believers were released on bail only today (Feb 29).” 

Alarming Trend: Church Attacks Increase Across India

Priya Sharma*, an Open Doors local partner shares, “There is an alarming increase in church attacks across India. Churches are being attacked, vandalised, destroyed, and closed. In the previous years, hundreds of churches have been closed and believers are finding it difficult to gather and worship freely.” 

Nitish thanked the Open Doors partners, saying, “I am very happy to meet people like you. I am encouraged to know that God’s people are there to support us in this crisis. It is all by your prayers that we are able to handle this situation now. Please continue to pray for us.” 

Pray for India:

  • Please pray for the speedy recovery of the injured believers. 
  • Pray for God’s strength and peace upon the 26 believers on whom the case was filed, as they do not have a lot of finance and are terrified. 
  • Pray for the police and lawyers who are involved in this case that they will fight for justice and not be influenced by money or authorities. 

*Names changed for security reasons.

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