Bombay archdiocese to focus laity relations *Govt to challenge minority sub-quota court order

May 30, 2012 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

Mumbai, May 29, 2012: The archdiocese is seeking feedback on its programs from the people to better reach the masses.

The Archdiocese of Bombay is planning a consultation to seek ways to improve its relations with the laity.

“We need to see if we are able to reach out to people the way we want to and check how we can reach them better if they have problems,” said Fr. Gilbert de Lima, coordinator of the working committee of the consultation.

Cardinal Oswald Gracias, archbishop of Bombay has called for the consultation which is expected to be held Nov. 14-16 at the St. Pius Seminary in Goregaon.

Fr. De Lima said the archdiocese has asked Nirmala Niketan to reach out to the community for a feedback. “Once their report is prepared, the Church will seek more data from priests,” he added.

The consultation meets once every ten years.

The consultation aims to guage the services of the Church and to seek feedback to take corrective measures and better reach the masses.

The first consultation was held in 1980 for mostly priests. Later the lay people were included for a holistic approach.

In 2001, the archiocese extended its program through several activities that focused on family, youth and the marginalized sections.

In 2006, it organized a mid-term consultation to introduce youth councils.

Commenting on the consultation, Conrad Saldanha, a member of the working committee and a laity said, “This whole consultation provides us time for reflection and renewal. Relationship is heart of life and so we need to address it.”


Govt to challenge minority sub-quota court order


New Delhi, May 30, 2012: The government would take a call on the issue next week after consulting the Attorney General.

The federal government today said it will challenge the Andhra Pradesh High Court order striking down its 4.5 percent sub-quota to minorities within Other Backward Classes (OBC) reservation in Supreme Court.

“We will file a Special Leave Petition in the Supreme Court against the order,” Minister for Law and Minority Affairs Salman Khurshid told reporters here.

Khurshid said that the government would take a call on the issue next week after consulting the Attorney General.

The Andhra Pradesh high court had observed yesterday that no evidence was shown to it to justify the classification of these religious minorities as a homogeneous group or as more backward classes deserving some special treatment.

Khurshid, however, said that “We have made reservation on a share of backward classes.”

“Religion cannot be the only criteria for giving reservation to a community. Minority is not just a religion, it is also linquistic,” he argued.

The minister said that the government did not include any new caste from the minorities in the OBC list but did it entirely on the basis of the Mandal Commission, which had suggested 27 per cent reservation for OBCs.

Meanwhile, the All India Majlis-e-Itehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) today requested the Centre to go for an appeal in the Supreme Court and obtain a stay on the ruling.

“Reservations are needed for Muslims’ uplift and it’s the responsibility of the government to extend reservations to ensure that minority students do not lose opportunities both in academics and jobs”, party chief Asaduddin Owaisi told a press conference in Hyderabad today.

He pointed out that literacy rate among Muslims was 59 percent, below the national average of 65 per cent.

However, the dropout rate of Muslim students at the school level was high. “Of 100 students graduating in India, only three are Muslims.”


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