Hounding the Samaritans

Dr Suresh Mathew Dr Suresh Mathew
12 Jun 2023
The State Commission for Child Rights went to a boys and girls boarding and a child care institute.

‘There are three internal threats to India -- Muslims, Christians and Communists,’ said Hindutva ideologue and the second RSS sarsanghchalak M.S.Golwalkar several decades back. His detesting declaration, unfounded to the core, is increasingly finding takers in the recent past. 

After unleashing lynching mobs on Muslims in various parts of the country, the target has now turned to Christians as never before. Christian institutions like churches, convents and schools -- besides priests, pastors and faithful -- have been their frequent victims. 

Now they have found another target -- orphanages, care homes for physically challenged children and similar institutions run by Christian missionaries. They have become sitting ducks to the prying eyes of some of the government agencies. Though they call it ‘investigation’, it is nothing but a euphemism for ‘raids. It is meant to hound and harass the good Samaritans who are taking care of the marginalised souls left out in the society.  

The new breed of ‘tormentors’ includes the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) and the District Child Welfare Committees. In the last couple of years, Priyank Kanungo, the chief of the NCPCR, has descended on several orphanages, students’ hostels, child care centres, and such places, run by Catholic priests and nuns, and accused them of forcible conversion of inmates. 

In Gujarat, a case was registered a couple of years back in a Vadodara court, and two nuns of the Missionaries of Charity were booked for allegedly “luring young girls towards Christianity” in a shelter home run by them. This happened after Kanungo’s visit to the home and his report to the District Child Welfare Committee. In Tamil Nadu, Kanungo made similar observations regarding a couple of suicides by students in hostels run by Catholic church. However, the investigating agencies found little truth in the allegation that the suicides were the result of the authorities’ attempt at forcible conversions. 
The latest and most blatant insinuation from the NCPCR chief came after a ‘raid’ by him and his team at orphanages in Sagar  and Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh run by the Catholic church. He parroted, without any proof, the same allegations of ‘forcible conversion’ of young inmates there, following which cases were registered against its authorities. 

The State Commission for Child Rights went to a boys and girls boarding and a child care institute. The ‘raiding’ team even entered women’s living quarters at odd time, bypassing and violating the laws in this regard. They did not leave out the church within the premises and entered it with malicious intent. The Bishop of Jabalpur too has been named in the FIRs without any rhyme or reason. 
The latest in the series of attacks on Christians came from yet another Hindutva laboratory, Haryana, where saffron-clad fundamentalists manhandled priests-in-charge and demanded closure of two churches under the Delhi Archdiocese. The Hindutva hooligans went on a rampage alleging forcible conversions in the church. The priests refuted the false allegations of the villagers, but the attackers’ agenda seems to be to ‘cleanse’ the villages of the very presence of Christians. The barrage of attacks is a clear sign of what is in store for even the good Samaritans in this country.  

Recent Posts

Eliminating GST on books and periodicals would honour Nehru's legacy and promote knowledge and literacy.
apicture A. J. Philip
15 Jul 2024
While Mr Modi continues his international jaunts, he fails to realise that he has never lost any credibility because he never had any.
apicture John Dayal
15 Jul 2024
Bishops in India have observed a weakening of the country's important democratic institutions.
apicture Arockia Rayappan
15 Jul 2024
Justice Agarwal's comments on religious conversion reveal a deep-seated bias and the alarming reach of Hindutva elements within the judiciary
apicture Cedric Prakash
15 Jul 2024
Forty per cent of child food poverty is reported in India, which is much higher than the global average of 27%.
apicture Prakash Louis
15 Jul 2024
Despite new labour codes and the e-Shram portal, unorganised workers in India continue to face challenges.
apicture Jose Vattakuzhy
15 Jul 2024
A smoking ban in the workplace has saved the economy.
apicture Pauly Muricken
15 Jul 2024
India can learn from the UK's efficient and respectful power transition.
apicture Vidya Bhushan Rawat
15 Jul 2024
The journey from traditional to modern classrooms highlights technology's transformative role.
apicture Rajani George
15 Jul 2024
They are your guilty ones. And I wonder how you will succeed in not 'sparing' them?
apicture Robert Clements
15 Jul 2024