Tamil priest’s candidature doubtful

March 29, 2014 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

Fr. JesurajTirunelveli, March 27, 2014: Bishop Jude Paulraji of Palayamkottai has reportedly asked an anti-nuclear activist priest of his diocese to refrain from the plans of contesting the parliamentary election from Tirunelveli.

Fr. M. P. Jesuraj, who has been nominated by the Aam Aadmi Party for the Tirunelveli Lok Sabha constituency, sought the bishop’s permission as Church laws explicitly prohibit priests’ political activity.

The Code of Canon Law 287 bars Catholic priests from taking an active role in political parties and in labor unions, unless in the judgment of competent Church authority the “protection of the rights of the Church or promotion of the common good requires it.”

Bishop, the competent authority in this case, has advised the priest to refrain from contesting, The Hindu reported.

If he goes ahead, this 30-yar old priest, a staunch anti-nuclear crusader, will be the first Catholic priest from Tamil Nadu to contest national polls.

He was among those who led the movement against the Koodankulam Nuclear Power Project. The decision to contest elections on the AAP ticket was a move to carry forward the movement, he had told press earlier.

He said it was the people who wanted him to contest the election. Another reason was the realization that political power is necessary to “bring in policy changes for sustainable development,” he had said while explaining his decision.

Ordained in 2000 at Palayamkottai, Father Jesuraj come from Chettikulam village in Tirunelveli.

– the hindu

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