Mumbai (AsiaNews) - "I'm really grateful for the opportunity to serve Maharashtra minorities and identify the problems and challenges they face," Janet Lawrence D'Souza told AsiaNews. Yesterday, she was appointed vice president of the Maharashtra State Minority Commission. A Catholic and the former president of the Maharashtra Women's Congress, Janet is the first woman to hold this office.
A member of the St Pius X Parish in Mulund (Mumbai), Janet is married and has two children. She is an active member in the ruling Congress Party where she has held various positions.
"The persecution and intimidation suffered by the Christian community for religious reasons, in particular in rural areas, are the biggest challenge to deal with," she explained.
"Fabricated cases of forced conversions are dangerous to the peaceful coexistence of all communities. Attacks on our churches or other places of worship not only ruin harmony and peace, but also threaten the development and progress of our state and our nation. "
Burial grounds for Christians is another issue that needs to be resolved soon, she noted, because "The Christian community in Mumbai and other districts of Maharashtra do not have enough land to bury their dead."