Guwahati: Seven German missionaries were restrained in Kaziranga by Assam police for flouting visa norms after they attended several religious meetings intended to convert people to Christianity. This is the second such case reported in a week. Three Swedish preachers were arrested in Dibrugarh on 26th October and deported for violating visa norms.
Special DGP GP Singh said that the detained German missionaries attended religious meetings in Tinsukia, Golaghat and Karbi Anglong districts. They were planning to attend such a meeting in Tezpur on Saturday. But the missionaries are on tourist visas, and as per law, they can’t join such religious activities. “This is a violation of visa norms. They are on tourist visas and on tourist visa they are not allowed to participate in religious activities. Only M1 visa holders can join such activities.” Special DGP Singh added.
The restrained Germans attended a function organised by a church association before they were detained. They are now lodged in a hotel in Kaziranga and asked not to leave without informing the local police. They have been accused of flouting visa rules by attending religious functions and delivering speeches at functions organised by church associations.
They were allegedly trying to convert people, mostly from the tea garden areas to Christianity.
Special DGP Singh further said that all are asked to pay a fine of 500 dollars each as per the visa norma of India, and they will be allowed to leave Assam on showing return tickets to Germany. Competent authorities are in touch with the German embassy also.
It should be mentioned that the seven German missionaries were accompanied by an Indian Christian preacher from Jharkhand and were invited by a local preacher named Terang of Assam. Special DGP Singh informed that a case would be registered against the Indian preachers for violating the visa norms intentionally.
The detained German missionaries will be deported back to Germany from Kolkata by Sunday, police sources informed.