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India: Christian doctor arrested over charges of allegedly converting a minor

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Police in Indian state Jharkhand arrested a Christian veterinary surgeon over charges of forcibly convert a minor. On October 16, father of the 13-year-old child filed a complaint against Dr. Dalu Soren, accusing him of converting his girl child by offering her money. The incident unfolded in Pakur district of Jharkhand State.

Christian persecution in India

Dalu Soren lived in Sawanlapur village is a cattle inspector in Chatarpur. After the arrest, Sajan K.George, President of Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), had condemned the act saying: “the arrest of the Christian, according to the Jharkhand Freedom of Religion Act [the anti-conversion law in force in the State, ed.]. We are suspicious of the arrest, given that recently Jharkhand is a hotbed of persecution against Christians “.

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The complaint against Dalu Soren was upheld by a local court. The father of the minor claimed that the Christian had allegedly offered 500 Rupees to the girl to force her to quit Hindu faith promising her that the missionaries will take care of her bearing all expenses of her education. The accused was subjected to a precautionary custody of 14 days.

President of (GCIC) Sajan K George termed the arrest suspected, because Jharkhand is among seven Indian states in which anti-conversion laws are in effect. He added that “six of these are governed by the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party and Hindu nationalists). Jharkhand was in the media glare with the arrest of two Missionaries of Charity on the baseless and fabricated charges of baby-selling. This was followed by 88 Christian backed non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) being under police probe alleged misuse of foreign funds which they legitimately acquired under a Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA) license. Later a Jesuit Father Alphonse Aind was been falsely implicated for abduction and rape in Jharkhand.”

“This latest arrest is a systematic ongoing harassment of Christians in Jharkhand is to polarise the society on communal lines, ahead of the general elections. They are even trying to divide the Tribal population, and sow seeds of disharmony in the social fabric for political gains,” he said.