The situation of Christianity in India continues to worsen by the month. There are many types of Christians, and about 2.3 percent of the population of 1.33 billion is Christian. Of these people it is estimated that just over half are Catholics, and given the history and influence of the Church, what happened to members of her in Indian society can mean a lot for the future of Christianity.
Many bishops and priests have reported record persecutions from the Hindu nationalists, as well as for all Christians. However, recently a priest by the name of Binoy John and a catechist named Munna Hansda were arrested and detained by local authorities for allegedly forcibly converting locals to the Christian faith.
The accusation of “forced conversions” is a popular expression used by Hindu nationalists to attempt to silence Christians and to force anti-Christians laws into popular acceptance. Christians know this tactic well in Indian and have spoken out aggressively against it.
George Alencherry, Papal Cardinal and Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar rite of the Catholic Church, has issued numerous complaints and appeals for their release from Jharkhand Prison. Despite repeated attempts at securing their freedom, they have yet to be allowed to return to their parish. Alencherry views this matter as one of “abuse of the legal system.” (source)
The arrest was made as a part of India’s recent “anti-conversion law,” which has been used as a cover to persecute Christians. The Cardinal believes Hindu terrorists are behind the actions being taken against the Church in the region.
Thus far the men have been denied bail, and it waits to been see as to what will come with their case.