Maharashtra: 12 People Injured After Mob Attacks Church Gathering During Sunday Prayers
In an unfortunate incident on December 24, nearly 12 people were injured during a prayer meeting at a private bungalow in Maharashtra’s Kolhapur district. Reportedly, the 40-member congregation at the New Life Fellowship Church in Kolhapur’s Kowad was attacked by 10 to 15 unidentified men armed with swords, iron rods, glass bottles and hockey sticks. The prayer service started at 11 am and the attack took place 45 minutes later.
What had happened?
When The Logical Indian contacted police official Mr Shripad Yadav said, “The victims were attending the Sunday Mass in a private bungalow at Kowad in Chandgad taluk. As this village is located at Karnataka border, we are suspecting that attackers are mostly from Karnataka.”
The entire incident started when the attackers mistook mass prayer as conversion programme and attacked the group. According to Scroll Pastor Anil Bhonsale said, “Armed men accused them of holding conversion programmes before starting the assault.”
The unidentified attackers started to throw stones to barge into the church. To defend themselves few women from the mass forced the attackers to back off by throwing chilly powder at them. According to the police officials, around two to three men, who were attending the prayers, sustained injuries and are admitted in a hospital in Karnataka.
Police are investigating the incident
As the police officials are investigating the event, police Inspector Sripad Yadav told The Logical Indian that they would find out about the convicts within the next two days, and have initiated a case against them under Indian Penal Code (IPC) Section 307(attempt to murder), 142(member of unlawful assembly), 147(punishment for rioting), section 295(injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class) and 323(punishment for voluntarily causing hurt).
Moreover, the officials are convinced that the attackers are from Karnataka and issued a statement to ANI that they have formed five teams to track down these accused convicts involved in the incident. And the teams have been sent to Belgaum to locate them.
However, on the other hand, Kolhapur Superident of police Abhinav Deshmukh told Times of India, “there is a possibility that right-wing activist orchestrated the attack. We are looking at all the angles.”