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Church body quizzes govt’s silence on divisive speeches

18 Jun 2017 06:05am IST
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18 Jun 2017 06:05am IST

Asks State to respond on intolerance amid growing insecurity and anguish among citizens

Team Herald


PANJIM: Council for Social Justice and Peace (CSJP), a church body has questioned Goa government’s absolute silence over social and religious conventions being held in the State, which, it argued, propagates divisive, anti-national and terrorist ideologies.

CSJP has also questioned the wisdom of the government in permitting organisations to hold conventions in Goa, whose members it has banned from entering the state.

“(Why is there) absolute silence of the Government of Goa over the increasing use of Goan soil for social and religious conventions which propagate divisive, anti-national and terrorist ideologies? The State Government’s ban against certain groups and individuals from entering the State while permitting their affiliate organisations and collaborators to have a free run at spreading hate and seditious ideologies is hypocritical, worrisome and threatening to the communal harmony in the State,” reads a statement issued by CSJP executive secretary Fr Savio Fernandes on Saturday.

The statement comes following a controversial remark by a Sadhvi attending the All India Hindu Convention at Ramnathi, that those who consider eating beef as a status symbol should be hanged till death. “I appeal to the Government of India that those people who consider eating the meat of their own mother as a status symbol should be hanged,” Sadhvi Saraswati from Madhya Pradesh had said at the meeting.

Her statement had triggered sharp reactions from the Congress claiming it would spark communal hatred while also asking the BJP-led government in Goa to lodge a FIR against her.

CSJP further stated that the ‘emboldened rantings from some of the religious leaders and politicians to foist a theocratic state are an open rejection of the secular and democratic ideals of the Constitution of India. The advice given to people of a particular faith to store arms in their houses is tantamount to a call to violence and terrorism’.

Fernandes said that Goa government owes a response to its people against the background of the nationwide growing insecurity and anguish among citizens, including concerns raised by 65 retired IAS and IPS officers about the ‘tacit complicity or active encouragement of state machinery’ in relation to activities inciting intolerance, vigilantism and hyper nationalism.
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