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Photo from GCIC

Eighteen Christians, including two pastors, were arrested on March 28 for converting to Christianity without official permit in Orissa's Mayurbhanj district. The arrests came after a police complaint was filed against the two pastors and 16 newly converted Christians. The Christians were brought before the SDJM Court at Baripada and were released on bail on March 30 and 31, charged under the "Orissa Freedom of Religion Act," which bans any conversion lacking a permit issued by authorities. Sajan K. George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians, called on Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to withdraw the accusations and put a stop to anti-Christian violence in the state.

Pray all charges will be dropped and that freedom of religion will truly be experienced by the people of Orissa. Ask the Lord to minister to the new converts and deepen their faith to help them overcome this opposition. Pray the Lord will continue to build His Church. Pray for all those who would oppose Him in India.

For more information about the persecuted Church in India, go to the India Country Report.