Friday, January 28, 2011

Press release on Report of Justice Somashekar Enquiry Commission on Church Attacks

January 28, 2011


Sub: Report of Justice Somashekar Enquiry Commission on Church Attacks

(Comments made on the basis of T.V.Report and before reading the full Commission Report)

We are disappointed that the Enquiry Commission has failed to name and pin point the attackers who attacked the Churches with the plea for lack of evidence, which is incorrect.

1. The attacks were pre-meditated and not spontaneous:

These attacks were not spontaneous in one place but it was a very well planned scheme which the perpertrators could execute simultaneously in different places of the District of Dakshina Kannada and the neighbouring districts. This could have been done only by an Organisation and not an individual.

2. The Government is fully responsible for these attacks which could have been prevented:

The Intellegence Department either was extremely inefficient or in spite of their knowledge which was given to the superiors (Government), the Government has deliberately ignored it knowing fully well such attacks were forthcoming. Therefore the Govt. is to be held fully responsible for these attacks.

3. The evidences given to the Commission and the failure of the give justice:

Three types of evidences were given to the Commission by the Victims/different Organisations including the Karnataka Missions Network.

a) Oral evidence by the Victims/Witnesses.

b) Pictures/Videos

c) Telecast Clippings of the Media

In all these evidences, it was abundantly made clear the direct police involvement in supporting the attackers/damaging the Church Properties and beating of Parishioners, inside the Church premises. How could the Commission could so blatantly ignore all these evidences and give a clean chit to the Police, unless there is some hidden agenda or the pressure from the authorities?

The centre of controversy of the start of the attacks was projected to be the book SATYADARSHINI written by Mr.Suryanarayana Paravastu , in Telugu in 1987 and translated into Kannada, a decade later. However, attention was brought on it only after the attacks in 2008(several years after the publication during which period there was no unrest). The Govt.strongly contended in the early stages that this was the main cause of the attacks specifically blaming New Life Churches as having distributed copies of this book, which was never proved at the Enquiry by the Commission though the Sangh Parivar (Bajrang Dal and others) went on alleging that it has hurt the sentiments of Hindu religion. The Commission could not establish these false allegations. Therefore, the very basis of the contention that these attacks were because of the said literature is not tenable. This was only a trumped up excuse to start the attacks with a future plan of action in view. The Sangh Parivar had determined to attack Christians/Churches with the forethought of banning all Christian literature.

As such, we the Christian Community fear that any Christian Literature would be labelled as provocative and the Govt. will go to the extent of banning all types of Christian Literature. This will amount to forcible suppression of practicing and propagating one’s religion which has been enshrined in the Indian Constitution.

4. False accusation of Conversions by force/co-ersion/enticement:

The above accusations are utterly false because there has not been even a single case of such conversion which the Christians know as unlawful. The Commission knows fully well that not even a single such case has been reported anywhere.

5.The Commission is very unfair to the Suffering Christian Community:

We believe that the Commission is fully aware of who the attackers are and also the atrocities committed by the police. But, it has deliberately closed its eyes to the truth. So, we consider the findings of this Commission is just an eye-wash (as desired by the Govt.) especially trying to exonerate the known attackers and thei r sympathizers in the Govt.

6. What next?

We the Christian Community hope that we will get justice and in keeping with the motto of the country – JUSTICE WILL PREVAIL.


Karnataka Missions Network