Developing story: Vote counts changed drastically after publication. MNN is conducting interviews and will be running a follow-up story with further details.

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi wins a third term in office, securing another five years of Hindu nationalist rule. Modi is only the second PM in India’s history to gain a third term.

A3 is a ministry formerly called Asian Access which helps develop Christian leaders. A3's David* says the years ahead will not be easy for believers under Modi and BJP rule.

“[The BJP has] been systematically working towards establishing a Hindu Rashtra nation, which predominately is going to be a theocratic form of democracy,” David says.

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“They have also been working systematically to change the constitution to openly declare that India is a Hindu nation.”

The oppression of religious minorities rose significantly during a decade of Modi and BJP rule. “We see in the rural parts of India extreme persecution; people have fled, the churches have shut down,” David says.

More persecution could be on the way. “They (BJP) might try to push for a national-level anti-conversion law,” David says. “They have successfully implemented stringent anti-conversion laws in the states where they are ruling.”

The central government has also endeavoured to bring more things under its control. David expects this trend to continue in the coming term.

“There’s been a lot of work to gradually unify things in India, even though we are so diverse in culture, language, and religion,” David says.

“They have been putting a lot of effort to unify [India] in terms of [making] Hinduism the main religion, to have a uniform civil code, and one election instead of multiple elections. So, there is a lot of effort to make sure that the power is concentrated.”

Pray that local church leaders will invest in training and discipleship as help from groups like A3 becomes more difficult.

“The next five years can become even more challenging. [The government has] been systematically tracking money coming into India from donors for churches and organizations, and they have been freezing FCRA accounts,” David says.

“Many organizations have [had] to shut down or even reduce their activities because of funding.”


 This story originally appeared at Mission Network News and is republished here with permission.