On 21 August, Pastor Kumar*, was attacked and brutally beaten by radical Hindu nationalists in Uttar Pradesh, India. The radicals reportedly accused Pastor Kumar of forcefully converting Hindus to Christianity and used this accusation as a justification for their assault.
According to Pastor Kumar, the radicals attacked while he was returning home from a prayer meeting in Bikampur village, located in the Bareilly district of Uttar Pradesh. A mob of 10 fanatics, led by a man named Aklesh Gangyar, surrounded Pastor Kumar and pulled him from his motorbike. Once on the ground, the radicals began to beat Pastor Kumar with wooden clubs.
The attack on Pastor Kumar became so savage that he soon began to think the radicals would murder him.
“God gave me the grace to accept even death,” Pastor Kumar said. “Scriptures were running through my mind as I was being attacked. However, when I thought about my four-year-old daughter and my wife, I was shattered, and it was excruciating.”
The attack lasted nearly two hours. When the radicals finished beating Pastor Kumar, they told him that they would kill him if they saw him in Bikampur village again. As the radicals left, they stole Pastor Kumar’s motorbike and his mobile phone.
Members of Pastor Kumar’s congregation in Bikampur village soon discovered the injured pastor and helped him go to the local police station to report the attack. However, local police refused to file Pastor Kumar’s complaint and accused him of attempting to register a false report. Pastor Kumar’s complaint wasn’t accepted until three days later, after a church leader from outside Bareilly district called the police station and advocated on Pastor Kumar’s behalf.
Pastor Kumar has been serving as a church planter in the Bareilly district for nearly four and a half years. Bikampur village is one of the communities where Pastor Kumar has planted a small church.
To date, the police have not taken any action against the radicals Pastor Kumar named in his complaint. The police have also not recovered Pastor Kumar’s mobile phone or his motorbike.
Unfortunately, the impunity enjoyed by Pastor Kumar’s attackers is not uncommon. Across India, radical Hindu nationalists go unpunished for their crimes against religious minorities. This impunity only emboldens the radicals, whose attacks have become more severe and frequent.
*Name has been changed for security reasons.
Source: International Christian Concern
- Pray for complete healing for Pastor Kumar. Ask the Lord to give him wisdom and strength to continue in his ministry.
- Pray He will help Pastor Kumar, his family and his fellow believers overcome any fear (2 Timothy 1:7).
- Ask the Lord to embolden His church in India to withstand the increasing opposition.
Post your prayer in the comments below.