On 15th July 2023, two individuals were arrested by the police in Uttar Pradesh’s Kaushambi district for their involvement in converting Hindus to Christianity under the guise of quack medical treatment. The arrests were made following an FIR filed by Mahendra Tiwari, a resident of Akbarabad, at Sarai Akil Kotwali on June 27. Three persons were already arrested in the case, and now two more have been nabbed.
According to the complaint, a group of people, including Ramchandra Pal, Gulbbo, Nanka, Panna, Govind from Athraha Mawai, and Gulbadan from Rasoolpur in Pipri, were organising a weekly gathering called the ‘Changai Sabha.’ During these meetings, they purported to cure people’s ailments by waving a broom in front of them.
However, it was alleged that their primary motive was not to provide any medical assistance but rather to exploit vulnerable individuals by pressuring them to renounce Hinduism and convert to Christianity. It was reported that many people had fallen victim to this scheme, enticed by promises of monetary incentives.
After a thorough investigation, the police arrested three individuals, Govind, Gulbadan Pal, and Abhishek, who were subsequently sent to jail. The latest arrests of Nanka and Panna on 15th July marked another significant development in the case. Following their arrest, both individuals were produced before the court and subsequently remanded to judicial custody.
Several such cases of conversions in the guise of quack medical treatment in the regions have emerged in the recent past. Several people have been arrested after locals filed cases against them. It is alleged that the quacks organise Changai Sabhas for this purpose and they mainly target Dalits as their easy prey.
The police authorities have taken the matter seriously, considering the serious allegations of religious conversion through deceptive means. The case serves as a reminder of the importance of safeguarding religious freedom and maintaining respect for diverse faiths within society. The police are likely to continue their efforts to identify any additional individuals involved in this alleged conversion racket. It is anticipated that further legal proceedings will shed light on the extent of the operation and bring about justice for those affected by these fraudulent activities.