Indian Christians killed by Maoist Naxalites

An influential Christian, Sukhdev Negi, was killed by Naxalites in front of his family on 12 August in Bhairamgarh, Chhattisgarh state. When local Christians protested, the attackers beat them. Local Christians reported the killing to police, but there has been no police response to date.

Sukhdev Negi’s brother, Sahdev, was abducted by Naxalites in 2013. When he was released, the Naxalites warned him never to return to his home village or to speak about his Christian faith, according to the Evangelical Fellowship of India.

In Odisha (formerly Orissa) state, a group of Naxalites killed 29-year-old Pastor Gurumurthy Madi on 17 August in Malkangiri district because he would not hand over a fellow Christian pastor who had previously been a Naxalite. Pastor Gurumurthy Madi had a wife and three young children, aged eight, six and two.

Naxalites are Communist guerrilla groups in India. A Christian couple accused of being Maoists were shot by the Indian Central Reserve Police Force on 26 July. The Indian military are targeting the Naxalite-Maoists in remote tribal areas, and Christians are often “caught in the crossfire”.

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