By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
NEW DELHI (Worthy News) – A jailed leader of more than 30 churches and congregations in northeastern India faces a trial on charges supporters link to his Christian activities, sources told Worthy News late Thursday.
“VOMC recently received a report informing that the trial of this Christian ministry leader, who has been imprisoned since mid-October, was finally scheduled to take place this week,” VOMC told Worthy News.
“Since the court had been awaiting a police report, the trial was delayed multiple times. According to the ministry leader’s family members, the police could not find evidence supporting the accusations against Brother B.”
The trial was to occur on November 28, but authorities have not yet shared information about the outcome, Worthy News established. It comes amid broader concerns about a crackdown on Christian activities in India, a predominantly Hindu nation.
“The mounting challenges experienced by religious minorities in India make it very difficult for believers to reach out to those residing in their communities who desperately need humanitarian help and hope,” VOMC added.
Officials from 21 countries, along with human rights groups, have reportedly urged India to improve religious freedoms within the country.
“In particular, critics have raised concerns over the increase in violence, hate speech, and anti-conversion laws that are targeting vulnerable minority groups,” VOMC noted.
The group said it urged supporters to remember Brother B in their prayers, “asking the Lord to give him peace and strength as he now deals with the outcome of the recent trial.”
VOMC also hopes that “any charges made against him will be dropped and that he will be permitted to continue his ministry activities without hindrance or further threat of arrest and imprisonment.”
The group said it was crucial to remember and pray for Christians throughout India “who are experiencing oppression,” including from authorities, families, and communities.
India ranks 10th on the annual World Watch List of 50 nations, where advocacy group Open Doors says it is most challenging to be a Christian. “The persecution of Christians in India is intensifying in many parts of the country as Hindu extremists aim to cleanse India of the presence and influence of believers,” the group explained in a recent assessment.
Some 70 million Christians are living among a mainly Hindu population of nearly 1.4 billion people, according to Christian researchers.