RSS and Bajrang Dal Workers Attack the Sunday Prayer Service in Bangalore
Yelahanka New Town, Bangalore North: 10-09-2013 –Pastor William John is the pastor in charge of the Living Hope Church in Yelahanka New Town in Bangalore North. It is a House Church and he has a congregation of about 70 believers. The church is housed in a rented building called the CNR Building. During the last 10 years the pastor has been steadily spreading the message of Christ and arranging worship services in different places in the same area during the last 10 years. About a year ago he was attacked by the Hindu fundamentalists alleging him that he has been converting Hindus to Christianity by using force and foul means.
Last Sunday, 01-09-2013,while the worship service was going on in his church, a couple of persons, active members of RSS and Bajrang Dal, forced their way into the church and just kept on observing as to what was happening in the church. After a few minutes, about 25 RSS and Bajrang Dal workers forcibly entered the church and broke up the worship service and began shouting at the pastor and the believers that they are forcibly converting Hindus to Christianity and that they would stop it at any cost. Then some of them beat up the pastor and others manhandled some believers. As soon as the police were alerted by someone, they rushed to the spot and tried to pacify both the sides and bring about peace in the place.
But the peace did not last even for a week when, again on Sunday, 07-09-2013, when the prayer service was going on, the same Hindu fanatics came to the church at about 11 in the morning and began disturbing the prayer service shouting loudly saying “no prayer, and no church”. Then, as they could not continue with their worship prayer service, Pastor William John along with some believers went to the Yelahanka New Town Police Station and lodged a complaint against the culprits. They also met the Inspector in charge of the police station, Inspector Ashok Kumar, and briefed him about the repeated attacks against the church by the Hindu fundamentalists without any provocation. The GCIC which came to know about the incident immediately got in touch with the Inspector and also briefed him. Inspector Ashok Kumar immediately filed an FIR against the culprits and also promised to give all the necessary police protection to the pastor and the church. However the pastor could not conduct his worship prayer service on Sunday last.