COIMBATORE: Two activists of a Hindu outfit were arrested for allegedly assaulting a pastor, accusing him of converting people by offering money, at Perur here on Tuesday.
Police arrested Bharathi and Thangavel, the alleged mastermind of the attack, and remanded them.
Simon Stanley (39), a resident of Perur, was heading a congregation of a Pentecostal church in Perur. During a recent service, the parents of an eight-year-old girl, who had broken her arm in a fall, had requested him to visit their house to pray for her quick recovery.
On Monday, Stanley and ten church members went to the girl’s house at Perur Chettipalayam. They were praying when a six-member gang barged into the house and accused Stanley of offering money to the families in the locality for religious conversion. After a heated argument, the gang began assaulting him and other members of the congregation.
Stanley was allegedly beaten up with sticks and dragged outside the house. He was then stripped and publicly humiliated by the gang, police said.
Speaking to Express, Stanley said that the gang had alleged that his church was receiving foreign funding and was defaming the Hindu community. Stanley somehow managed to escape from the gang and admitted himself to the CMCH. He had suffered injuries to his forehead, neck, wrist and torso.
Based on his complaint, the Perur police registered a case and identified five of the attackers. While two were arrested, a search for four others was launched.
SP M Sudhakar said that the six men were activists of a local right-wing outfit. Police have taken precautionary measures in the area.