3 March, 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
EGYPT - ISLAM
What Tayeb and Sisi said is big step towards a revolution in Islam
by Samir Khalil SamirThe grand imam of Al-Azhar slammed literalist interpretations of the Qur'an and the Sunnah, as fundamentalists and Islamic terrorists do. He supports the urgent need for Islam's reform, especially in terms of teaching lay people and clerics. He also calls for an end to mutual excommunication (takfir) between Sunnis and Shias. Egyptian President al-Sisi chose to fight the Islamic state group after it beheaded 21 Coptic Christians, whom he called "Egyptian citizens" with full rights.
SAUDI ARABIA - ISLAM
For head of Al-Azhar, religious education reform is needed to stop Islamic extremismFor Ahmed al-Tayeb, it is urgent to come up with new educational programmes to avoid "corrupt interpretations" of the Qur'an and Sunnah. Islamic terrorism undermines the unity of the Muslim world. He blames Mideast tensions on a "new global colonialism allied to world Zionism". a speech by the Saudi king is read at the conference.
HONG KONG - CHINA - VATICAN
It looks like someone is trying to shout us down
by Card. Joseph Zen Ze-kiunThe widespread optimism concerning the dialogue between the Holy See and China is largely groundless. Some Chinese bishops unable to speak freely are asked "leading" questions. The key issues remain unresolved, namely episcopal appointments and the fate of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association. Benedict XVI's Letter to Chinese Catholics, also cited by Pope Francis, provides guidelines. No agreement is better than a bad agreement. What happened to Msgr. Cosma Shi Enxiang and Msgr. James Su Zhimin? Hong Kong's bishop emeritus, champion of religious freedom in China, delivers a vibrant reflection.

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.