(International Christian Concern) – Since the beginning of 2020, there has been a dramatic escalation in Christian persecution in the southern Indian state of Karnataka. Reports of violent attacks on the state’s Christians, often justified by false accusations of forced religious conversions, have become a regular part of the news.
Many Christians in Karnataka are worried that their state will become another Uttar Pradesh or Jharkhand, where Christian persecution feels like a state policy. With a state government being led primarily by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), some Christians are concerned this wave of persecution may be followed by the enactment of an anti-conversion law.
“There are four legal cases filed against my congregation and me,” Pastor Raja Bhovi, a church leader in Karnataka, told International Christian Concern (ICC). “None of the accusations from those cases are true. The radicals first threatened us to deny Jesus and our Christian faith. When we refused to recant, they beat us badly and started filing false cases against us.”