In excess of 30 priests and seminarians (priest novices) who were singing Christmas carols in a village near Satna Town in Madhya Pradesh were arrested yesterday (Friday 15th December 2017), after a Hindu nationalist group named Bajrang Dal accused them of forcibly converting Hindus.
A Catholic Priest (not arrested) spoke with BACA, he said:
“A group of students training to become priests was moving around Satna town, visiting Christian institutions and singing carols.
“Some 15 km from here in Dara Kalan village church they were getting ready for the Christmas celebrations, when a group of people attacked them, accusing them of carrying out religious conversions.”
The Hindu group raised slogans and called up the Civil Lines Police Station. All 32 carollers, accompanied by two priests, were taken to the police station.
Many of the victims who have been arrested have described extrajudicial violence by members of Bajrang Dal, whilst being detained at Civil Lines Police Station in police custody, they say that police officers watched, in some cases goaded the rioters and even joined in the beatings that the priests and seminarians were subjected to…