Eight Christians accused of attempting to convert children to Christianity in northeast Nepal were acquitted on Dec. 6.
They eight were arrested in June in Dolakha district when they were conducting trauma-counseling programs to earthquake-affected schoolchildren in a program organized by Teach Nepal, an NGO.
Included among the materials distributed to the children was a comic book on the story of Jesus based on the Bible, which was the basis of the accusation.
UK based Christian Solidarity Worldwide said the case’s final hearing in the case was postponed four times before finally being held on Dec. 6. The court delivered an oral verdict dropping all charges and called for the bail money to be returned to those who had been accused.
“This is not an isolated incident, it is, in fact, part of a worrying trend of growing state repression of religious freedom in Nepal,” said the Christian rights group.