According to reports, the only church of Tandur of Telangana state, India, The Parimala Church has been burnt to ground by Hindu radicals.
The church hosted as many as 70 members and was the only church of the village. It was set on fire last week, with furniture, Bibles, songbooks destroyed.
The assailant’s haven’t been identified yet.
Pastor D. Srinivas said, “I have been serving as the pastor for the last six years in this village. We used to meet at church members’ houses, till last year we built a temporary structure.”
“Prior to this incident, on number of occasions, right-wing activists have threatened me and warned me not to continue the church in this village. The Hindu radicals have snatched the Gospel literature from me and destroyed them a number of times in the past,” Srinivas added
Archbishop Anil JT Couto talking to NDTV brought the situation upfront and said, “”A clear pattern of orchestrated attacks is emerging as more and more churches are targetted, vandalised and set on fire.”
“This is very disturbing and we request the authorities to take adequate measures to bring to book the miscreants who are threatening to weaken the social fabric of this great nation,” Archbishop added
Since BJP took power in India, there has been an increase in cases of religious intolerance in India. Many have taken to harm religious minorities and their properties with the most recent event being the arrest of a group accused of converting to Christianity in Madhya Pradesh.
Open Doors organisation that keeps watch on global Christian persecution has ranked India 21st country where Christians face persecution while Catholic Secular Forum has claimed that as many as 7000 Christians faced persecution in India in 2014 alone.
“This year, and during the reporting year, India has become a more dangerous place for Christians, largely because Hindu extremists seem to think that the new government there will give them impunity when they attack Christian churches. The episodes of violence there from extremists are on the rise,” said Open Doors CEO David Curry