KATHMANDU: A Christian pastor was released on September 10, after spending nearly two years behind bars in Nepal “for eating beef.”
Pastor Chhedar Lhomi Bhote, 37, was detained in October 2012 when a mob of Hindu militants torched his home in north-east Nepal. After discovering he had eaten beef, angry residents reportedly said they saw him “killing a cow”, an act considered a criminal offence in Nepal.
According to an advocacy group Barnabas Fund, “The pastor, who is the leader of a small church community, was brought to court and sentenced to twelve years’ imprisonment. His subsequent release is thought to have been prompted by petitions to the Nepali government and the work of several Christian Non-Governmental Organizations.”
Pressure on Nepalese Christians is growing in the predominantly Hindu nation, according to activists.