Indian Christians beaten and kicked out of village for refusing to recant faith
More than a dozen Christians have been expelled from their village in India after they refused to recant their faith.
After multiple threats the group of 15 were told if they did not renounce their religion they would face 'dire consequences', according to the persecution watchdog Open Doors.
When they declined they were beaten by a mob of 2,000 from their village. One 22-year-old girl was left unconscious. and the attackers taunted them saying: 'If your Jesus is alive ask him to heal her right now.'
When she eventually regained consciousness the 15 Christians fled and sheltered at a church in a nearby town.
Open Doors, a charity for persecuted Christians, have documented a 'sharp rise' in attacks against Christians in India with 350 incidents recorded in 2015 rapidly growing to 800 in 2016.
The charity say hundreds more have already been recorded this year.
The annual Open Doors World Watch List ranks India as the 15th worst country in the world to be a Christian. It points to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) ties to the militant Hindu extremist Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).
Rajeshwar Singh, one of the leaders of this group, has boasted on national media that the RSS will make India free of Christians and Muslims by December 31, 2021.
'Despite being the world's largest democracy, with a constitution that guarantees freedom of religion and belief, extremism is thriving in India,' a statement from Open Doors read.
'The Indian government is led by the Hindu nationalist party Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and turns a blind eye to attacks on minorities.'