Forced conversion in India-a myth that needs to be broken

5 min readJan 15


Iniyaval Rajini

We have a certain sect of people in India, that is becoming paranoid on the conversion of Hindus to Christians and Muslims. What is amazingly surprising is the statistics that tell, even after 2000 years of Christian presence in India, the conversion rate is just 3% each. St. Thomas the apostle, and various other missionaries and the British Presence could only manage the conversion equivalent to 3%. Same applies to Muslims too, where the Moghul presence did not do much to radically grow their religious population.

While the Muslims are seen as threat as terrorists, Christians are seen as missionaries who are intent on changing the religion of every Indian to Christianity. And again there is a big disparity in the way north and south sees or perceives this outlook. The hatred of the so-called hindus over the muslims in north is primarily because of its prior history, involving the Moghul ruling for over a long period of time. Escept Tamilnadu and Kerala, all the other states have Urdu Mulims, who are no Indians, but are settlements from the invading rulers. There was a particular destruction that happened to evoke the hatred of other religions in the north. Whereas in south, it was the same linguistic clan that converted to either Muslims or Christians. Hence the feeling of hatred or rivalry does not exist. It is either Tamizh Christians or Tamizh Muslims, who speak in Tamizh at home, and who follow most Tamizh Cultures. Especially the Catholic Christians, whose God alone is from another nation, but traditions are all Tamizh.

The fear propagated by the current BJP government and regional government is more to do with their own agenda of personal gains and growth rather than following the constitutional rights. On closer inspection, we can actually understand that the conversion in Tamilnadu did not happen rapidly like the other countries, because the values imparted by the Christian lot, was already existing and thriving in Tamil Culture. There is no big need for conversion. And the converted lot can be classified as those people marginalized by the Aryan and Vijayanagar invasion, within the closet of Varnasramam, which converted people from Clan to Caste thinking. Those who were in the lowest rung of life needed the feeling of worth and hence chose the religion that did not classify them as small or low human beings. And then we have another set of converts who were fascinated by the life of the Christian missionaries, and fell in love with the God they worship because they could not help it.

If we delve deeper, both Catholic and Tamil means “Universal”. Life in both revolves with sentiments and duties that encompass the empathy and responsibility towards all living beings, and not just human beings. While Christianity speaks about “Love your neighbours as yourself”, Tamil talks about “Yāthum ūrē yāvarum kēlir”. While Christianity is adorned with the sign that denotes universal peace, Tamil also signifies its care and empathy towards the world with உ letter used in every format of writing. This is wrongly misconstrued as religious marking, while in truth it is nothing but the letter that denotes “Ulagam”. There is magnanimity in the way Tamil is represented and hence the conversion rates are pretty slow compared with world population, where most countries were either Christian or Muslim countries.
Nevertheless, India cannot be identified as a Hindu country bearing in mind its various rich ethnic religious affiliation since very long. It was the British that coined the name for easier management, and this is typically used by the rightists for their own political gain. The oldest culture which is Tamil Culture, are originally “Saivas” and “Vainavas”, which is typically the religion of Tamil with high values pertaining to life and living. Every worship or adoration is taken from the living with respect. Aryan dominance killed the essence of that, with their mythical stories entangled within the reality of Tamil religious belief, which has penetrated into the minds of simple Tamil people.

There was a time recently when I was talking to one of my so-called hindu friends, who do not use the brahmin iyers for any of their functions, and pride in their being faithful to Tamil Culture at every level, yet was vehemently selling the stories of the Aryan Myth. She believes thoroughly that Murugan is son of Shivan, and Vinayagar was a God born of dirt. How humiliating could it get, for staunch Tamizh Saivas and Vainavas to actually understand history and belief in the wrong way? History says that Vinayagar is a super symbolism of intelligence, while Murugan is the Tamil God, born of Korravai. History is hidden and the myth surfaces and controls the population, and sadly every person is out there trying to protect their God. Does the almighty God and creator really need our protection, is my question?

The ego of the person is so inflated that he goes down saying I am going to protect my God and my dieties, rendering the power of God to nothing. The creator being existent, we will have to trust that He is much more powerful to protect Himself and He does not need our help. He only needs us to love all of His created people and watch over nature and leave it safe for the new creatures, because He is the father and mother of every creation. Killing and harassing in the Name of God is nothing but a reflection of inflated Human Ego.

The political agenda is to confuse people and to replace love of humanity to false sense of duty towards saving religion. The purpose of religion is to make people live a life of dignity and love, offering the same to fellow human beings. But to operate and use it for personal gains is the agenda of the current government. In the name of religion, atrocities are encouraged. Dehumanizing is permitted. I have personally been harassed to prove that I am of Tamil Ethnic, stating that Christians are not Tamils. If this consistent oppression and harassment could tire me, what about all those people out there, who need to focus on daily living, as the rug of financial security has pulled out from under the feet of millions, in the last 50 years?

There is no evidence to prove that the Christian and Muslim community can harm the country, and hence this piece of “Forced Conversion” is put on the platter and advertised as an event of great importance, underplaying the need for focus on growth and development. And clearly the agenda is to grow a few people of certain commnity with their own ethnicity.

This is nothing but a clear case of Duping. What has not changed for 2000 years, cannot change in the coming years. And if this continues, there could a spurt of growth in these religious minorities, as persecution and death of certain people was the cause of mass conversion in the countries that have embraced Christianity. You could say that the rightists are after the conversion…after all! LOL.

(Iniyaval Rajini. Entrepreneur. Founder of Nigarili, as well as a wife, mother of three children (a daughter, a son, and a dog). Politics, Family Life, and Religion are all topics that fascinate this aspiring blogger and vlogger. With an astute interest in People and books, she looks forward to making her stay in this world affirmative in making it a better place.)




Bulletin of the Chennai Jesuit Province