Plea Against Kerala Bishop for Jihad Statement

The Muslim Coordination Committee in Kottayam filed a petition demanding the registration of a non-bailable prosecution against Syro Malabar Church Pala diocesan bishop Mar Joseph Kallarangatt.

Thiruvananthapuram: The Muslim Coordination Committee in Kottayam filed a petition demanding the registration of a non-bailable prosecution against Syro Malabar Church Pala diocesan bishop Mar Joseph Kallarangatt, who declared Catholic girls in Kerala were increasingly becoming victims of “love and narcotic Jihad.”

The office-bearers told the media in Kottayam on Friday that they had filed the petition with the Kottayam Police since no one agency has ever said with any convincing proof that such a thing has happened in the state, and thus his assertion is based on communal overtures.

Congress working president and senior legislator P.T. Thomas said the statement of the bishop does not help in bringing harmony in a secular state.

“Statements like these are dangerous and send wrong signals and the best thing one can do is none should do anything which will act as a fuel for creating unrest,” said Thomas.

Leader of Opposition V.D. Satheesan said the statement of the bishop crossed all levels of civility.

“Statements like these should be best avoided, especially by religious leaders as it only helps to fan trouble. The need of the hour is that religious leaders should be one who will help to face the troubles in the society and what has happened has happened and this should end here,” said Satheesan.

The bishop while speaking at a Church celebration in Kottayam district’s Kuruvilangadu had said: “Wherever arms cannot be used, narcotics are being used and it’s here Catholic girls become the victims. And to help this there is a group in Kerala which is functioning. To understand this, one needs to just analyse how come ladies from other religions reached the IS camps,” said the bishop.

“As part of ‘love jihad’, ladies are getting converted and there is increased usage of drugs by Catholic youths. All this is being done to see that no non-Muslims are there, and to help in all this there is a group and all should be cautious,” added the bishop.

He went on to state that any attempt to deny that there exists ‘love Jihad’ in Kerala is like closing eyes to reality and is being done by vested interests with a reason.

“There is a plan going on to forcefully bring in Muslim thoughts and all Catholics should be aware of this and be watchful,” said Kallarangatt.

In 2016, the Kerala government approached different Central agencies, including the IB, NIA, and RAW, to inquire about the truth of claims concerning 19 missing people from the state, who, according to some relatives, are suspected to have joined the IS.

The 19 people included 10 men, six women, and three children, with the majority hailing from Kasargode and a handful from Palakkad districts, and including Christian and Hindu converts. (IANS)

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