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  • » 09/05/2014, 00.00


    Karnataka, Hindu radicals against Catholic school: Do not "Christianize" the uniform

    Fomented by ultra-nationalist militants, some parents protest against the Mariambika English School. The new uniforms feature the institution's logo: a depiction of Mary, whose name in the local dialect is also the name of the school. Christian leader: "shameful accusations, the school will welcome students of all religions because of the quality of education it imparts."

    Mumbai (AsiaNews) - "A shameful and senseless dispute, fueled by rogue elements who hope to obtain political consensus," says Sajan K George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), commenting to AsiaNews on theepisode involving the Syro-Malabar Catholic school, Mariambika English School, in the village of Indabettu (Karnataka), accused of having "Christianized" school uniforms, although many of its students are of other religions.

    It all began on September 2, when some parents - including members of radical Hindu groups - have complained to the school authorities over the new logos for t-shirts, belts and ID cards, which contained the symbol of the crucifix. The situation quickly degenerated, and the next day a crowd of people - mostly Hindu - organized a demonstration outside the institution. Due to the increasing tension, the Belthangady police intervened to bring the situation under control. The parents agreed to leave only after the school staff agreed to temporarily withdraw the new uniforms.

    "The school logo - Sajan George tells AsiaNews - is a caricature of Mary, which is the vernacular name of the Institution itself and this logo was on the School Uniforms. The belts etc. carried a logo, which had a small cross".

    According to the president of the GCIC, the episode was orchestrated by "the ultra-nationalist Hindu groups, who want to create distrust and disharmony among the different communities. Christian schools are among the most respected for the quality of education they impart. A demonstration of this, is the fact that Christian students are a minority in our institutes, which welcome a significant number of Hindu and Muslim pupils".

    Moreover, notes Sajan George, "Mary is revered by all Indians, irrespective of their religion. Many non-Christians make pilgrimages to Marian shrines, and this makes what happened even more shocking". (NC)



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    See also

    15/01/2011 INDIA
    Christians denounce authorities’ complicity with extremists in Karnataka
    False accusations mounted against young Christians as the aggressors go unpunished. The President of the Global Council of Indian Christians, Sajan K. George makes an appeal to the government: "You should take immediate steps to protect the lives and properties of the microscopic Christian community."

    11/07/2011 INDIA
    Andhra Pradesh, Pentecostal pastor stabbed. GCIC: The state is "complicit"
    Four Hindu radicals accused him of forcible conversions. For Sajan K George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), the attack is a "crying shame" for a secular state like India. Even in Karnataka and Orissa there is no peace for Christians.

    31/01/2012 INDIA
    Karnataka Hindu extremists attack a Jesuit Catholic College. Students and teachers beaten
    The attack on the colleges of St. Joseph Anegal (40 km south of Bangalore) occurred on January 27. Reason for the assault, failure to display the Indian flag during celebrations for the national holiday. The extremists attack the university campus before the eyes of the police, who arrested without cause, the rector Fr. Melvin Medonca. The University is renowned for its commitment in the education of Dalits and tribals.

    12/01/2012 INDIA
    Karnataka, 20 Christians attacked on false charges of forced conversion
    The Pentecostal pastor of the Agape Church has lost a finger. A man and a woman seriously injured in the leg and head. Hindu nationalists raided a private home. Sajan George, the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC): "assaulting a woman, exceeds any standards of decency. Christian’s safety in their own homes at risk in Karnataka. "

    03/10/2011 INDIA
    Karnataka, police force closure of two Pentecostal churches
    It happened in the districts of Hassan and Bangalore. Behind reports from Hindu extremists, local police accused the pastors of not having permission to worship and of practicing forced conversions. Since the beginning of 2011, 36 anti-Christian incidents in Karnataka. Sajan K George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC): "Reign of terror against the Christian minority continues."

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