Christians are talked about as Minorities but not violations of indigenous rights by the Church
The term ‘persecution’ is being copyrighted by the Church around the world. Church and Christian vested interest groups have misused the word by all means; to defame non-Christians, to earn money from devout Christians of the West under the pretext of saving persecuted Christians in East by locals, to create human rights groups to mint money and for every purpose which has nothing to do actually with persecution! The term ‘persecution’ is used to browbeat Third Word Governments, to blacklist competing companies from non-West countries (after being stamped as commercial entity passively involved in Persecution), to create human rights activism groups to be used later to create political problems and to develop political turmoil there.
Persecution by Christians
But the reality is totally different. At every instance, whenever and wherever the term is used, it connotes as it Christians are Persecuted. But in Africa and Asia, Christians are persecuting local indigenous faith people. For the minor instance of indigenous people of Asia or Africa in which they fight back with those Christians actually persecuting them; they use the bogey of Christian Persecution to push them on the back-foot.
Religious Persecution in India
Anyone using Google search to get an idea of Persecution scenario of India, one would come to immediate conclusion that every Christian in India is facing intense torture, rape, attack, loot, plunder and anti-Christians groups are roaming freely across length and breadth of India with machete in one hand and dagger in another to locate and kill Christians. By selling these fake, fabricated, concocted news of Christian persecutions in affluent, Christians of Western World, the evangelists and newly propped up Christian denominations are minting money on a huge scale only to embezzle it for personal use or to promote anti-establishment political turmoil in Eastern countries or to Evangelise indigenous populations of Asia.
If we take any part of North East India where the Christian population is more than 25%, we would come to a shocking conclusion. In such areas, Church is using all of its proxies viz NGOs, student unions, armed separatists and political parties to persecute indigenous faith people living in the area.
Meghalaya Case Study
In Meghalaya, the population of indigenous Niam Khasi faith of Khasi tribe is dwindling and they are in minority. Also, Songarek faith followers of Garo Tribe are also in minority. In both tribes building school, health centre or any cultural, religious conservation initiative by indigenous faith meets stiff violent resistance from Church proxies. Both indigenous faith followers are facing the highest grade of persecution. Their vibrant leaders are attacked, abducted and killed to shun their voices. Cases head nowhere. The inquiry leads to a dead end. As we know, the case of abduction of Seng Khasi leader of Khasi tribe, Bah Rijoy Sing Khongshah of Meghalaya. He was abducted in the year 2000. The government faced angry followers from the indigenous faith community and ordered CBI inquiry which led to nowhere. No accused arrested and prosecuted.
The steep increase in cases of attacks on a place of worship of Khasis is alarming. The recent attack on a place of worship of Niam Khasis in Kongthong village is best for persecution by Church case study. Locals lodged a complaint with the names of accused in it. Police fabricated diagonally opposite report in this matter claiming the attack as a result of the factional feud between two groups. The police report came after 16 email complaints and follow up that too after 6 months.
In Garo Hills of Meghalaya, Church is forcing minority Hindu tribals to pay hefty ransom only to allow them to perform, celebrate annual Pujas. Legal Rights Observatory has raised dozens of such cases in a quest to search for much-awaited justice.
In Nagaland, Padmabhushan award winner freedom fighter Rani Gaidinleu is the biggest example of posthumous persecution by Church. Her memorial vandalised, the foundation stone in her native village destroyed and uprooted only because she was an ardent follower of Herakka indigenous religion.
In Arunachal Pradesh too, 30% Christian population pulverising 70% indigenous faith followers with the help of their agents deployed at strategically important locations in government services.
In all situation of persecution by Church is grave all over India and indigenous faith people are under intense pressure to give up their ancestral faith. LRO vehemently pursuing such cases but miles to go to achieve ZERO Persecution target as the quantum of such incidences is ever-growing and it needs huge network and resources to deal with it.
Hope Indian media, intelligentsia, political parties and NGOs from across the country would start treating Church as Persecutor and not as Persecuted one would stop buying their fake stories of Christian Persecution. Two years ago, we had published a detailed report on Church propaganda on Persecution with the title “Christians in India-Masters of Manipulations: Christianity’s Perception Manipulation in India vis-à-vis Hindu Organizations”. You would get a detailed account of it in it.
Only awareness would deliver justice to those victims of Persecution by the Church in India. And we hope whole India would listen to the voices of India’s persecuted communities!
(The writer is a Research Fellow at ICRR, Guwahati)