India (MNN) — Protestors line the streets of India’s capital, demanding justice for a nine-year-old Dalit girl. She was sexually attacked and killed by four men who then burned her body to cover up the crime. More about that here.
How is this vicious act related to Christian missionaries getting kicked out of India? They’re both consequences of the same system: Hindu ideology. The Hindu caste system divides India’s people into four social categories. Dalits, also known as “untouchables,” fall below the lowest tier, making them vulnerable to all sorts of social evil.
Hindu ideology is also the driving force behind Hindu nationalism. John Pudaite of Bibles For The World says India’s government does more than ignore Hindu nationalism.
“The BJP, that’s the ruling party in the national government, has been trying to throw everything they can at Christianity and Islam to make India a completely Hindu nation,” Pudaite says.
Between 1998 and 2004, the BJP was the dominant partner in the coalition that controlled the central government. It also ruled over various states. … its power ensured that when vicious assassinations or mass genocides did happen—in Orissa against Christians, in Gujarat, against Muslims—central law-keeping forces did not intervene to stop the actions, and the sheltering of the guilty was managed very effectively.
In a recent interview, one government official said Christian missionaries should be forced to leave the country. “This member of the BJP, a member of the Parliament, has claimed that Christian missionaries are taking advantage of religious freedom rights guaranteed by the Constitution,” Pudaite says.
The accusation is a cover-up meant to disguise motive. “This just struck me as yet another attack on Christians from a different angle,” Pudaite says.
“We have to see through these different veils and see them for what they are. These are just [a] continuation of the anti-conversion laws being passed across the country.”
Authorities frequently use anti-conversion laws as a convenient cover to persecute Christians and other religious minorities. More about that here.
“The anti-conversion laws allow these forces to attack Christians in different ways. As Christians are starting to gather again in worship, they can attack these gatherings under the pretense of illegal conversion [activity],” Pudaite says.
Ask the Lord to protect His followers throughout India. Pray believers can have God’s courage, wisdom, and boldness.
Header image is a representative stock photo courtesy of Parij Borgohain/Pixabay.