Secular forces in Gujarat, Bangalore and Thane speak against persecution

August 15, 2014 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

GUCFHR special prayers in all Christian churches of Gujarat for peace in Iraq & the Middle East

Iraqi Christians at prayerAt a meeting of the Gujarat United Christian Forum for Human Rights (GUCFHR) held at Bishop’s House, Mirzapur held, Bishops, Church Elders and representatives of the Christian Community in Gujarat decided that:“Special prayers for peace in Iraq & the Middle East will be held in all Churches all over Gujarat on Saturday, 16th & Sunday 17th August 2014”.

The GUCFHR unequivocally condemned the attacks on the Palestinians  in Gaza and also the brutal killings and attacks by the ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq & Syria) on Christians and other minorities in Iraq.  Further, the GUCHFR re-echoed the words and appeals from the World Council of Churches, the Vatican and of His Holiness Pope Francis that, ‘You cannot make war in the name of God’, and have urged the perpetrators to shun these inhuman acts of violence immediately.

The GUCFHR have also called upon all world leaders and all men & women of goodwill to do all they can to ensure lasting peace in these zones of conflict. Finally, the GUCFHR expressed  sympathy, solidarity and support to all victims of these violent conflicts. A circular will  be read out at all services in all Churches of Gujarat on August 16th & 17th.2014.

Archbishop S. Fernandes sj (Catholic Archdiocese of Gandhinagar)
Dr. Geevarghese Mar Yulios (Syrian Orthodox Church)
Bishop Silvans Christian (CNI Diocese of Gujarat)
Bishop Thomas Macwan (Catholic Diocese of Ahmedabad)
The Church of North India (Gujarat Diocese)
Catholic Archdiocese of Gandhinagar
Catholic Diocese of Ahmedabad
Catholic Diocese of Baroda
Catholic Diocese of Rajkot
The Gujarat Regional Conference of the Methodist Church in India
Salvation Army Indian (Western)
Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church
Mar Thoma Syrian Church
Seventh Day Adventist Church (Gujarat Conference)
Syrian Orthodox Church
Christian Missionary Alliance of India (Gujarat Synod)
and many more…

Secular forces in Bangalore speak against persecution

BangaloreThe Indian Social Institute in collaboration with Karnataka Komu Souhardika Vedike (KKSV) – Karnataka Communal Harmony Forum – and other individuals, civil society organizations, faith based organizations etc is organising a public demonstration on 17th August (Sunday), 2014 at Town Hall, Bangalore from 5.30 pm to 7.00 pm.

The KKSV is holding its consultative meeting in ISI on 16th and 17th August, 2014. Girish Karnad, Ram Punyani, Irfan Engineer, Teesta Setalwad, Anand Teltumbde etc are expected to be present. On 17th evening a public demonstration is being organized at Town Hall highlighting our solidarity for the following issues:
1)      The Victims of War in Gaza;
2)      The Victims of Communal Violence in Kandhamal;
3)      The Victims of Violence against Women;
4)      Demand for Greater Democratic Space.

We can all gather under the banner of KKSV and / or others can bring their own banner and or placards. Let us be present and also mobilize lots of youth who are willing to be part of these efforts and express their solidarity.

– Prakash Louis

Kandhamal Day in Thane, Maharashtra

Anti-Christian Violence in Kandhamal25th August marks the sixth year of the anti-Christian violence in Kandhamal, Odisha in 2008. Six years after the violence, the perpetrators are still at large, and justice and peace for most of the survivors remain illusive. Justice and Peace Commission (Mumbai), Sanjeevan Kendra (Thane) and Archdiocesan Women’s Commission are organizing a public meeting to observe Kandhamal Day – by way of extending solidarity to the victims and survivors, and their brave struggle for justice and citizenship rights. The meeting will also discuss the importance of peace, justice and accountability for a secular democracy in India. You are cordially invited to participate in the meeting and discussion.

Venue:  The Pavilion, St. John the Baptist, Jambli Naka, Thane (West)

Date and Time:   23 August 2014, Saturday, 6.00 pm-8.00 pm

The following is the schedule of the program, remembering our affected sisters and brothers :
a. Film Screening: Indomitable Women Survivors of Kandhamal (duration: 25 mins)

b. Kandhamal Violence: Repercussions on a Secular India
– Irfan Engineer (Peace activist and Director, Centre for Study of Society and Secularism)

c. Breaking the Shackled Silence: Unheard Voices of Women from Kandhamal
– Saumya Uma (Researcher & activist – human rights, gender and the law)

d. Impact of Communal Violence on Minority Rights, Women’s Rights & a Secular Democracy
– Vahida Nainar (Independent researcher – women’s rights & human rights)

e. Questions and Answers / Discussion

Note: Kindly confirm your participation by 20th August 2014 by email to

– allwyn  d’silva

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