UP Police summons top Prayagraj varsity officials in mass conversion case

It was alleged that some poor Hindus were lured to convert to Christianity by offering education, health and employment during a prayer meeting at the Evangelical Church of India in Fatehpur.

Lucknow | Updated: 28 December, 2022 5:27 pm IST
Sam Higginbottom University of Agriculture, Technology and Sciences (Deemed to be University)

Uttar Pradesh Police has summoned the chancellor and other high-ranking officials – all Christians – of Prayagraj-based deemed university and a Bishop on suspicion of their role in funding religious conversions into Christianity.

The summons was issued by the police officer who is investigating a case of alleged conversion at a church in Fatehpur district in April this year.

It was alleged that some poor Hindus were lured to convert to Christianity by offering education, health and employment during a prayer meeting at the Evangelical Church of India in Fatehpur.

Amit Kumar Mishra, the investigating officer of the case, has summoned chancellor Dr Jetti A Oliver, vice chancellor Prof. Rajendra B Lal and director Vinod B Lal of the Sam Higginbottom University of Agriculture, Technology and Sciences.

They have been asked to answer police questions regarding the conversion event on Thursday, December 29.

Speaking to media persons, IO Mishra said that their role came into light during the investigation of the case.

“We have issued notices to them along with one Bishop Paul, who stays in Prayagraj. They have been asked to join the probe and explain their role by December 29,” Mishra said.

In April this year, an FIR was registered against 52 people at Kotwali police station in Fatehpur on the complaints of Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Bajrang Dal workers.

The police have so far arrested 14 people, including a priest of the church. Some of the accused are absconding and some others have secured anticipatory bail from the district court and the Allahabad high court.

“They (those converted) claimed to have adopted Christianity after the accused promised jobs, education and houses to them,” said the investigating officer.

He also informed that three locals namely Pramod Kumar Dixit, Sanjay Singh and Rajesh Kumar Trivedi have filed affidavits stating that the accused tried to convince them to convert to Christianity.

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