09/04/2018, 10.21
INDIA
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Tamil Nadu, music too loud at a festival: Christian mission damaged

by Nirmala Carvalho

The "Jesus Comforts You Trust" is located in the district of Tirupur. The police interrupted the annual festival and accused the organizers of noise pollution i. Sajan K George: "All the festivals in India are celebrated with loud music".

Mumbai (AsiaNews) - Unknown criminals have damaged the property of a Christian mission in the state of Tamil Nadu, accusing it of celebrating too loudly. The vandalism took place between August 11 and 12, but the news only recently emerged. Commenting to AsiaNews Sajan K George, president of the Global Council for Indian Christians (GCIC), condemns the "vandalization of the properties of a Christian fund".

This is the "Jesus Comforts You Trust", a fund of the Christian mission located in Kangeyam, in the district of Tirupur. The Rev. Freeth John Knox reports that in the past the institute "bought an acre of land in Varadhappapalayam to build an orphanage. Later the structure was not built, while a representative building was created".

M. Saminathan, another pastor, reports that every year the fund celebrates the anniversary of ownership. This year the anniversary took place between August 11 and 12. "But the first day - he says - the police arrived, interrupted the celebrations and took away the musical instruments. Then they accused us of not having permission for the party and that the volume of the music was too loud. The agents later informed us that some residents of the village had reported the noise ".

The Rev. Freeth says that the next day "we went to the property and we found the main door smashed. Inside, everything had been vandalized, including musical instruments, electronic equipment and other things that the police had returned to us." "We suspect - he adds - that the incident was caused by those who filed a complaint about the volume of music. They want to put our religious practices at risk ".

Sajan K George laments: "The Constitution of India recognizes everyone's right to enjoyment, freedom and property [personal]. Unfortunately for the Christian minority, rights are a negotiable thing ". The Christian leader points out that in the country "all the ceremonies are celebrated with great fervor and enthusiasm, including music. This Christian ceremony was interrupted due to the alleged high volume. But on the streets we always see holidays with high music. In addition to being excluded from society, the Christian community is also threatened with noise pollution ".

The religious freedom of the tiny Christian community, concludes the president of the GCIC, "is threatened both openly and subtly, under the guise of noise pollution. In an official way, India is a secular nation in which everyone's faith, including that of minorities, should be respected. Instead, the reality [is very different], especially for Christians ".

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