Christians protest profiling in Madhya Pradesh

April 21st, 2011 - 6:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Narendra Modi Bhopal, April 21 (IANS) After the Narendra Modi government in Gujarat, the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government in Madhya Pradesh has begun profiling Chritians in the state, drawing protests from the community.

A five-member delegation, led by Reverend Leo Cornelio, the Catholic Archbishop of Bhopal, met the chief minister Thursday on the matter and expressed their apprehension about the measure, launched by the state police last month.

However, neither Chouhan nor any other minister given any clarification on the issue so far.

A circular has issued from the police headquarters March 23 to all the police heads of 50 districts of the state, asking them to collect information about the financial status, foreign income (if any), political leanings and criminal record (if any) of the Christians living in the state.

It also asked them to estimate the total strength of the community, the break up between Protestants and Catholics, the number of churches - existing as well as upcoming, the number of Christian schools and of Christian teachers

However, as soon as matter come to fore, the officials denied issuing any such circular.

“We did not issue the order. We are probing the matter how it happened,” said Director General of Police (DGP) S.K. Raut.

Even after the denial, cases of profiling the Christian community were reported Wednesday in Raisen district, about 40 km from Bhopal.

The Christian community vehemently criticised government and demanded a high level inquiry into the matter.

Father Muttungal, the spokesperson of the Catholic Church, told IANS: “There is some hidden agenda behind it otherwise I don’t think a democratic country permits such sort of profiling. There should be a high-level inquiry into the matter.”

“We are being treated as the second grade citizens,” said Archbishop Leo Cornelio, claiming Christians “are living under fear in the state”.

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