(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

Chief Minister Pema Khandu at a celebration - Image: World Watch Monitor www.worldwatchmonitor.org
Chief Minister Pema Khandu (second from front left) during a celebration in memory of a Christian missionary respected in the state for preaching peace.
Photo: World Watch Monitor

Anti-conversion legislation has been a part of several Indian states for many years. It was first introduced in Orissa in 1968 and has since been introduced in six other states -- the most recent being Uttarakhand in March 2018. (For more details, visit this page.)

In a surprise announcement, the Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh intends to repeal the 1978 Freedom of Religion Act. In making the proclamation on June 28th, he stated that the act, rather than providing freedom of religion, "could undermine secularism and is probably targeted towards Christians." According to The Hindu news service, Christians account for more than half the population of the state.

The announcement is particularly surprising because Arunachal Pradesh is currently governed by the Hindu-nationalist BJP party, which has actively campaigned to expand such legislation throughout India. The party has been increasingly pushing Hindu nationalism ahead of next year's national elections. Since the Chief Minister's announcement, there have been sharp reactions. Indigenous faith groups have strongly condemned his decision, while Christian groups have expressed appreciation and joy.

Current Ministry Projects

VOMC VOMC assists persecuted Christians with legal support and rehabilitation assistance, and cares for children of martyrs by providing them with a safe place to be nurtured physical and spiritually. VOMC also partners to equip Christians in India with Biblical training and works to strengthen and support marginalized and persecuted Christian women. Additionally, VOMC helps to provide medical assistance to believers who have faced injuries after being attacked.”

Project Funds: Families of Martyrs, Equipping the Saints, Legal Defense, Relief and Development, Women’s Ministry, Medical Fund

Country Information

Designation
Persecuted

Population
1,339,330,514 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Indo-Aryan (72), Dravidian (25), Mongoloid and other (3)

Religion (%)
Hinduism (79.8), Muslim (14.2), Christianity (2.3), Sikh (1.7), other (2)

Leader
President Ram Nath Kovind (2017)

Government type
Federal parliamentary republic

Legal system
Based on English common law; separate personal law codes apply to Christians, Hindus and Muslims.

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for India

Despite the intimidation and violence that have taken place in many of India's states, may Christians wisely yet unashamedly preach the Gospel. Pray that indigenous Christians and foreign missionaries will minister in ways that do not hint at fraudulent conversions, unmasking the intentions behind the anti-conversion legislation. Intercede for India's leaders, that they may reign with justice and righteousness.

end

Select a Region

India News

  • Anti-Conversion Laws Expand to Haryana State
    A group of people riding motorbikes, all wearing orange scarves, some carrying orange flags
    Hindu nationalists in Haryana.
    Photo: Morning Star News

    Despite strong opposition, and even walkouts organized by opposing politicians, the Haryana Assembly in northern India passed the "Haryana Prevention of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Bill" on March 22nd. The bill's stated purpose is to instil

    ...
  • Pastor Killed by Masked Men
    Man with his head in his hands
    Pray that believers will sense the comforting presence of God’s Holy Spirit who grieves with them in their loss.

    Pastor Yallam Shankar was at home in Angampalli, Chhattisgarh, on March 17th when five masked men suddenly burst in. After dragging the pastor from his home, the attackers stabbed him to

    ...
  • Pastor Beaten Over Conversion Allegations
    Large building (Delhi Police Station)
    Delhi Police Station
    Photo: Wikipedia / Ji-Elle (cc)

    On the morning of February 25th, Pastor Kelom Kalyan Tet was returning from visiting a friend when he was accosted on a street in South Delhi by a mob. Accusing the pastor of illegal conversion activities, they began to beat him. The assailants

    ...