Indian Christians up in arms against police survey

Assam, January 08 (KMS): Christians in India’s Assam state have decided not to cooperate with the police, who began a survey aiming to gather details of Catholics, their churches, institutions and religious conversions.

Archbishop John Moolachira of Guwahati said, “Catholic parishes and institutions have refused to give details because the government and state chief minister himself has disowned it.”

He said Christians see the circular issued by the police department in Assam on Dec. 16 as discriminatory as it singles out activities of the Church.

Following the Christians’ objection to the circular, the state’s Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma disowned it during a press conference.

The leader of the pro-Hindu Bharatiya Janata Party, which runs the state government, said his administration did not want any survey of the activities of Christians in the state. “I completely dissociate myself from the [police] circular,” Sarma told reporters.

Archbishop Moolachira told the media that since the chief minister had disowned the circular, the Church has advised Christians not to give any details to the police survey.

“We came to know about the circular during the Christmas season. Along with several other Christian organizations, we objected to it. Later, the government disowned the circular,” he said.

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