Christian council welcomes Modi’s speech

February 20, 2015 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

ModiHyderabad, February 18, 2015: In a meeting of All India Christian Council leaders in Hyderabad, Most Rev Dr. Joseph D’souza, the President of the All India Christian Council welcomed the recent strong and clear statement of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s commitment to religious freedom and the United Nations article on religious freedom.

He has rightly said that the Indian tradition for centuries has been about religious tolerance. It is only in recent decades that violent religious extremism has come into play and there is a serious attempt to divide the Indian nation along religious lines.

Further the All India Christian Council supports the Prime Minister’s commitment to development which is the need of the hour. No one can ignore the great needs of hundreds of millions of people for food, jobs, quality education and equal opportunity.

Rev Dr. G. Samuel the executive secretary of the Baptist Churches and the All India Christian Council national vice-President stated that Indian Christians are against any forced or fraudulent conversions and that when there is violation of the same, the present laws under IPC are sufficient to take action against the guilty. Talks and announcements of some anti-conversion laws are attempt to divide and polarize Indians and demonize Indian Christians. All that Christians ask is for the peaceful belief and practice and propagation of their faith as demanded by their faith and also as guaranteed by the Constitution.

Bishop Dr D’souza stated that Christians must keep peace and harmony with all faiths and all protests should be peaceful and under the law when their communities are targeted by extremist groups. It appears that some extremist groups are intent on polarizing the religious communities and also working hard on scuttling the Government’s development agenda and vision.

Many young Christians have voted for the development agenda of the present Government as their future looks bleak without dramatic change in India’s economic sector and opportunities for education and employment. Thus the assurance from the Home Minister Rajnath Singh on protection is very welcome.

Rev K. B. Edison, the member of the Pentecostal Synod of Tamil Nadu stated that the Christian Council now expects actions from the government against the culprits who are attacking religious places and wants to know who is behind the attacks in New Delhi and other places. These are not accidental attacks but suggest an agenda.

He further stated that it should be clear that Indian Christians will not be hostage to any political party and should work with and support parties that in action stand for religious freedom, development of the lives of the poor and downtrodden, and communal peace.  Once political parties come to power they completely ignore these commitments that are important for Christians.

– press release

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