Hindu nationalists call for Caritas licence for foreign funding to be revoked
by Nirmala Carvalho

The official charitable organisation of the Catholic Church is also in the crosshairs of an 'anti-conversion' campaign promoted by an organisation linked to fundamentalists. A complaint was sent to the Ministry of the Interior. Fr D'Souza: "Unfounded accusations against a work that serves everyone. This only fuels prejudice and fear'.

Mumbai (AsiaNews) - Even Caritas India, the official charitable organization of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of India (CBCI), is in the crosshairs of Hindu nationalists in their anti-conversion campaign.

Around Easter, an NGO linked to the RSS galaxy presented a complaint to the Ministry of the Interior requesting that its registration with the FCRA be revoked, the register which on the basis of very stringent rules allows Indian associations to receive funding from abroad.

The Legal Rights Protection Forum (LRPF) - a Hyderabad-based NGO founded in 2016 - is conducting a real campaign, once again taking the issue of alleged religious conversions as a pretext.

Together with Caritas India, it also attacked the Rural Development Trust, an organization based in Anatpur in Andrha Pradesh, accusing it of using "the local government's free housing project for poor and marginalized communities for its Christian conversions".

Other non-governmental organizations such as Harvest India, World Vision India and Jesus Redeems Ministries, based in Tamil Nadu, have had their FCRA licenses canceled or suspended following these types of complaints.

The president of Caritas India Msgr. Sebastian Kallupura, archbishop of Patna, comments to AsiaNews: "We don't know who made these accusations, we don't know this group. Our lawyers are dealing with the matter."

Former executive director of Caritas India, Fr. Frederick D'Souza, adds: "The accusations are unfounded. Caritas India does not aim at any conversion, but works at the service of all and is inclusive. It operates in thousands of villages, especially in remote and backward areas, with impoverished small farmers. Through sustainable farming methods, has significantly increased their income, but has also enormously reduced their migration to urban areas. These accusations – he concludes – are based only on prejudice and fear."