Persecution | Aug. 29, 2019
Washington, D.C. (International Christian Concern) – While it is no surprise that geopolitical tensions and economic cooperation dominated President Trump’s recent discussions with Prime Minister Modi of India, it’s disappointing that the deplorable state of religious freedom in India was not mentioned at all. In power since 2014, Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has overseen a marked growth of religious persecution across India. The BJP allows and promotes a brand of radical Hindu nationalism which tries to recreate modern India as a Hindu nation rather than the secular nation it was founded as in 1947. This Hindutva philosophy views other faiths, like Christianity and Islam, as “foreign faiths” and their adherents as second class citizens.
The rise of Modi and the BJP has coincided with a dramatic increase in attacks on religious minorities and the now nearly complete immunity enjoyed by violent, pro-BJP radicals. Despite Article 25 of the Indian Constitution, which promises complete freedom to not only practice but also to propagate one’s religion, Christians in India are being forcibly prevented from spreading their faith or holding corporate worship services. Mob violence against Christians is all too common, and the authorities do all too little to curb the criminal intimidation of Christians even as it happens all around them.