We serve Christians around the world whose brave faith in Jesus means they are, beaten, threatened, imprisoned, tortured, falsely accused, disowned and hated.



Human rights experts from the UN have written to the Indian government, warning them that anti-conversion laws are a ‘tool of persecution’. 

In India, new anti-conversion laws are meant to prevent attempts to convert people away from Hinduism through ‘misrepresentation, force, undue influence, coercion, allurement or by fraudulent means’. But in reality, they’re often used to harass and intimidate religious minorities for simply expressing their faith.

In the letter, the UN Rapporteurs for Freedom of Religion or Belief, Nazila Ghanea, and for Minority Issues, Fernand de Varennes, warn that the laws continue to be used as ‘a tool of persecution by those who are genuinely opposed to religious tolerance… by creating further polarisation and generating an atmosphere of fear among religious minorities’. The laws are currently active in 11 of India’s 28 states, with some calling for a nationwide anti-conversion law.

The letter was originally sent to the Indian government on 16 August. After they failed to respond within a 60-day window, it has since been made public.

Atmosphere of fear

The laws seem to be fuelling aggression against simple Christian and church activities – like prayer meetings:

“Several reports of prayer meetings, religious services being interrupted by angry mobs accusing the worshippers to be involved in forced religious conversions have been recorded,” says the letter. “These cases contribute to creating an atmosphere of fear for religious minorities and climate of impunity for vigilantes who feel entitled to disrupt peaceful religious services, intimidate and use violence without repercussions.”

The letter references a report by the Indian advocacy group Article 14, which investigated 101 police reports filed in Uttar Pradesh and found that the majority are based on complaints by ‘Hindutva outfits using the law to harass Christians’. Hindutva is an extremist Hindu ideology that says that Indian Christians (and other religious minorities) are not true Indians because they have allegiances that lie outside India, and asserts the country should be purified of their presence.

Vague wording and low conviction rates

Other concerns were also noted in letter, including the vague wording of the laws, with words such as ‘misrepresentation’ and ‘allurement’ open to broad interpretation by accusers and the authorities. It means that, when cases go to trial, they tend to fall flat because the prosecutor is unable to substantiate the charges with evidence. This is what happened recently, when a court in Uttar Pradesh ruled that a pastor and his wife had not committed a crime by distributing Bibles. Conviction rates for alleged forced conversion are low, but can cause great disruption and trauma to believers’ lives. 

Lisa Gentile, Senior Advocacy Officer for Open Doors International said, “These laws are completely unnecessary. They are being used been used by Hindu nationalist supporters to settle personal scores and promote their own agenda. And to roll them out any further would cause further fear and misery.”


Give thanks for this intervention and pray that the warnings will be duly heeded by the Indian government


That the Holy Spirit to minister His peace, healing and comfort to those feeling fearful because of the laws.


For an end to spurious accusations and for there to be legislative changes that deter these from being made

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