20 April, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 09/21/2012
INDIA
Religious intolerance grows in Tamil Nadu, 13 cases in 2012
by Nirmala Carvalho
The denunciation comes from the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC). Under pressure from Hindu nationalists, a local administrator denies the status as a place of worship to a community hall legally built by a Christian community. Usually, the Tamil Nadu is known as an example of harmony and development among the Hindu, Christian and Muslim communities.

Mumbai (AsiaNews) - "Alarming" growth of religious intolerance in Tamil Nadu, a state of southern India, generally taken as an example of development and harmony between the different communities. The complaint comes from the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), that reports of 13 anti-Christian incidents the have occurred since the start of 2012. In all the cases, the victims have been Pentecostal or Protestant communities, the object of discrimination and persecution of various kinds, perpetrated by Hindu ultranationalist groups belonging to the umbrella group of Sangh Parivar ("Family of associations"). Another peculiarity is the almost total silence of political and legal institutions, which often allow the culprits to remain free.

One of the most egregious cases concerns the Rev. S. Suresh Rajan, for 12 years at the helm of the Pentecostal Church of Vivekanandapuram. His community has 300 faithful who gather each Sunday in a thatched hut. A few months ago, the pastor was able to buy a small piece of land, where he built a Community Hall. But when he completed the building, the district collector (local administrator) S. Nagarajan denied permission to use it as a place of worship. They faithful then appealed, and on June 7 Judge K. Venkatarajan sided with the Christians, giving the district collector eight weeks to change the status of the Hall. Under pressure from Hindu radical activists in the area, Nagarajan has continued to deny permission, and has asked the Christians to appeal to the Tamil Nadu government. At the moment, the community of Rev. Rajan still does not have a church in which to celebrate its prayer services.

For Sajan George, President of the GCIC, the gravest aspect of this whole story is "the obstinate disobedience of a court order," that "will only serve to fuel in the Christian community the mistrust of government and justice".

About 89% of the population of Tamil Nadu are Hindus, followed by the Christian minority (6.1%) and Muslims (5.6%). Christianity is widespread especially in the southern districts of the state, which are home to some of the places symbolic of Christianity in India: St. Thomas Mount (Chennai) where the martyrdom of St. Thomas the Apostle allegedly took place; St. Thomas was the disciple of Jesus who brought Christianity to India; San Thome Basilica, dedicated to St. Thomas; Our Lady of Good Health of Vailankanni, known as the "Lourdes of the Orient". 

 

 


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
07/20/2013 INDIA
Tamil Nadu, a Pentecostal pastor in prison for baptizing a woman
03/29/2006 INDIA
Vote only for "secular" politicians, urge Tami Nadu bishops
by Nirmala Carvalho
08/31/2011 INDIA
Tamil Nadu theft, destruction, beatings and arrests of Protestant Christians
by Nirmala Carvalho
11/18/2014 INDIA
Tamil Nadu, 100 Hindu radicals attack a Christian community
by Nirmala Carvalho
08/07/2014 INDIA
Tamil Nadu: Hindu radicals beat up women and children of a Pentecostal community

Editor's choices
VATICAN
Pope: on the persecution of Christians, the international community should "not stand by mute and inactive” and “look away”For the sixth time in a week, Pope Francis mentioned the martyrdom of Christians in today’s Regina Caeli (the Marian prayer at Easter), slamming the indifference of the international community towards this "alarming failure to protect basic human rights.” Today’s martyrs "are many, and we can say that they are more numerous than in the first centuries." In addition, “Faith in the resurrection of Jesus and the hope He has brought to us is the most beautiful gift that a Christian can and must offer his brothers and sisters. To one and all, therefore, do not tire of repeating: Christ is Risen!”
ASIA
Easter: The silence of the innocent and the gag
by Bernardo CervelleraViolations of religious freedom and the West's hypocricy surrounding this issue are likely to drag the world into an unprecedented chaos. But even in silence - of death accepted for love or death inflicted by power - God is at work. An indestructible hope rises on Easter morning and a small opening of the heart is just enough for it to invade a lifetime. Happy Easter.
IRAN
Time for a deal with Tehran, a reliable partner against the Islamic State group
by Bernardo Cervellera A framework agreement on the Iranian nuclear issue has to be inked by 31 March. US Republicans, Israel and Saudi Arabia are fiercely opposed to it for ulterior motives. Hassan Rouhani wants Iran to come back into the international fold. Tehran is playing a mediating role in the Middle East. For Vatican nuncio, “there is no evidence that Iran is preparing a nuclear bomb.”

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.