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Organizers of a prayer meeting by the Seventh Day Adventist in Vishakhapatnam city in Andhra Pradesh called it off after a Vishwa Hindu Parishad (World Hindu Council) leader lodged a police complaint against them on Thursday (November 23), said Sam Paul, public relations secretary of the All India Christian Council (AICC).

“In the name of healing and prayer meetings, the Christian missionaries are carrying out conversions,” a city VHP general secretary identified only as Neelakantham told a regional daily, The Deccan Herald. “Their prime motive is evangelism.”

Evangelism is not illegal in India, though some states have laws against “forcible conversion” by coercive or fraudulent means. Such “anti-conversion” laws are in force in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Orissa and Arunachal Pradesh, where Hindu extremists regularly use them to file false charges of “forcible conversion” to further nationalist interests. Gujarat state has yet to frame rules under which its act can be enforced, and Tamil Nadu state is in the process of repealing its anti-conversion law.

Founder and President of Gospel for Asia KP Yohannan says, GFA’s had programming in 92 languages, but that just grew. “We added 11 new languages, which represent more than six million people, going to 11 nations right now,” he says.

There are more than 1,500 languages spoken in India, so Yohannan says, the need is great. He says people who speak these languages are receiving intense training and are now sharing what they’ve learned. Yohannan says it very effective. “Their voice is heard over the radio in their own language, for the first time that Jesus died for them and He’s alive today and they can find forgiveness of sin and salvation through Christ.”

Christian radio is prohibited in India, so this kind of programming is popular. “They gravitate toward the radio — 30 or 40 people sit around one transistor listening to the radio in their own language now hearing the Gospel.”

According to Yohannan, persecution against their people used to be isolated, but now? “It is a normal daily thing that our pastor and missionaries are beaten and abused, churches are burned down. I’m certain this increase in persecution has everything to do with the number of people coming to Christ.”

According to Yohannan the country hasn’t experienced this kind of persecution in the history of the nation.

Prayer is needed for the 103 radio missionaries, but Yohannan says that outreach isn’t stopping. “We are praying that the Lord will allow us to have 200 languages broadcast in the very near future, which means it takes a lot of money to set up studios and pay for the air time and follow up materials.”

Last year Gospel for Asia received more than 1-million letters from people hearing their radio programs.

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