11 Christians detained under false charges granted bail in UP

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Eleven Protestant Christians who had been detained for a week after being arrested in violation of Uttar Pradesh’s anti-conversion law were granted bail by a local court on July 17.

Social worker Dinanath Jaiswal, who supported the Christians in their legal battle, stated, “We are happy that our brothers are released from jail.”

Following accusations from the extreme activist organisation Bajrang Dal, the 11 Christians were detained on July 9 during a Sunday service.

The demonstrators pushed their way into the prayer room and charged the pastor and others with engaging in forced conversion.

Pastor Babu Ram and 10 other people who were present at the Sunday prayer session were detained by the police, and they were later brought before a court in Bahraich district.

“It is unfortunate that police keep registering totally fake cases against Christians who are merely attending the Sunday prayer services,” said Jaiswal.

He claimed that since the state government of Uttar Pradesh passed the anti-conversion law in 2020, life has been unbearably difficult for Christians in that state.

Since then, other Christians, including pastors, have been imprisoned in various facilities, Jaiswal noted.

According to the law, the victim, a close relative, or a guardian must make the complaint for the police to open a case of illegal conversion.

But since the police “do not follow the law,” and instead support the hardline activists, Christians are “forced to mobilise resources to fight the totally false cases in courts,” Jaiswal remarked.

Additionally, the authorities detained thirteen Christian women, however, a local court granted them bail, Jaiswal reported to UCA News on July 18. The women faced allegations of unlawful assembly, collusion and criminal intimidation.

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