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Varanasi
Sunday, June 26, 2022

Two men, Keshav and Omkar – recent converts to Christianity from Punjab/Jammu, arrested for luring poor villagers to convert in Gorakhpur, UP

Uttar Pradesh police foiled attempts at illegal conversion of Hindus to Christianity. They arrested two Christian missionaries who tried to convert Hindus at Pipraich on the outskirts of Gorakhpur. 

This is the first such case registered in Gorakhpur after enacting the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Religious Conversion Ordinance, 2020. The accused were identified as Keshav Singh Janwal from Janipur, Jammu, and Omkar from Pathankot, Punjab. Both the accused were produced in court and remanded to judicial custody.  

They were staying at the house of one Seema in Chilbilwa village near Gorakhpur. The accused tried to lure mostly poor SC Hindus by offering them free education in missionary schools, employment, money and other benefits if they converted to Christianity. 

Locals led by Sanjay Maurya from Pipraich village complained against these criminals, following which police picked them up. Pipraich police station officer Madhum Mishra said that both the accused were initially Hindus who had converted to Christianity two years ago. They had done a certificate course from Carmel Bible college in Pathankot, Punjab and admitted to having converted 25 people over the past two years in Punjab and other states. They usually visited rural areas adjacent to cities.

Here is a video of a ‘convocation ceremony’ of the Carmel Bible College, Pathankot that can be seen on a YouTube channel called Harvest USA. In the video, the speaker is claiming that he was earlier holding a post with Shiv Sena in Ropar, Punjab and how he used to ‘beat up Christian preachers’ and was about to ‘burn a Church’, before the ‘true light of Christianity’ dawned on him.

Such hate-mongering, indoctrination centres/colleges, mostly funded via FCRA by our ‘partner’ USA and other Western nations, have now mushroomed all over the country (a Carmel Bible College exists in Eluru, AP too), especially in ‘secular’ strongholds like AP, TN and Punjab. They pose an existential threat to Hindus and all Dharmics, and to the very integrity of the nation.

Keshav Janwal has been staying in Gorakhpur since January and Omkar joined him on the 7th of this month. 

Several allegations of forced conversion have emerged from Gorakhpur in the past few years. But no case was lodged due to absence of ‘solid evidence’ and no formal complaint being lodged. In November 2020, Christian missionaries tried to convert Hindus and arranged a prayer meeting near Padauli. They would have succeeded if the local youth had not protested. Police took a few members of the conversion mafia into custody. 

Police freed them after they claimed that they wanted to open schools to educate the poor children. Luckily for them, locals did not come forward to register an official complaint. In early 2017, reports of similar forced conversion and prayer meeting incidents came from the Chillua Tal Lake. Locals protested and forced the mafia to retreat, but cases were not registered. 

The Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Religious Conversion Ordinance, 2020 stipulates strict punishment for misinformation and unlawful or forced conversion using fraudulent means. Those found guilty can be punished with imprisonment for a term ranging from three years to 10 years and fined Rs 25,000. Any voluntary conversion in UP has to be approved by a district magistrate. It is also illegal to convert minors or scheduled caste/ scheduled tribe women by deceit. Punishment for mass conversion is even more strict, and the organization’s registration is automatically canceled. 

Such incidents show the utter degradation of Hindu religious institutions in the country’s hinterland. Else, how is it possible that such unscrupulous soul harvesters are moving around openly in our villages and colonies and there is no local Hindu religious leader or body to challenge them? For how long will we just push the onus on Sangh parivar, which is after all primarily a socio-political organization? Isn’t it the responsibility of our ashrams/mathas and sadhu-samaj to counter such anti-Hindu supremacist missionaries?

Weakened by a predatory secular state that controls large temples and prevents Hindu donations from being used to propagate and preserve Dharma, and abandoned by an utterly deracinated elite and rich class that is more interested in seeking approval of Western liberals, large swathes of Hindus today lack religious mooring and support networks. Every temple exists as a separate island, and we frequently hear of priests being murdered and temples being desecrated. Academia and entertainment media has left no stone unturned to demonize Brahmins, sadhus, temples and Dharma.

The easiest solution to ensure social harmony and peace, an essential pre-requisite for our development dreams, is for the Bharatiya/Indian state to shed secularism, embrace its civilizational nature, and act as the upholder and protector of our ancient Dharma.

Contrary to what scare-mongering liberal-seculars say, many developed nations of the West too have done this by embracing Christianity as their state or preferred religion and bestowing special privileges on its followers. Bharat, being the homeland of Hindus and other Dharmics, is an obvious candidate for such a Hindu/Dharmic Rashtra, which would function just like any other modern state like UK or Italy, both of which have maintained appropriate separation between religion and state, while at the same time granting a privileged position to Christianity.

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