28 years ago, Sister Abhaya was found dead in a well at the St Pius convent in Kerala’s Kottayam district. At the end of CBI probe it was found that on 27th March 1992, Abhaya allegedly saw Catholic priest Father Thomas Kottoor and Sister Sephy, also an inmate of the convent, in a compromising position, following which they hacked her to death with an axe and threw her body into the well hoping truth would never come out. In this case, the judgment was given only recently.
A Similar crime has now happened in Tirunelveli on 25th January. Hermin’s home for destitute and orphaned children and elderly at Panagudi in Radhapuram Taluk in Tirunelveli district which is being run by Father Joseph Easy Thore. It is alleged that he misbehaved with the inmates including children for a long time. A cook in the home Rajamma, a destitute and aged 60, accidentally saw Father Joseph and another inmate Jayalakshmi in a compromising position on 25th January. “Both were in the nude stage. When they knew Rajamma had seen their lovemaking, both confined her in a room and attacked Rajamma with lethal weapons. They also warned her not to reveal what she had seen on that day. She was subjected to harassment.
Badly injured Rajamma managed to escape on 29th and got her admitted at the Radhapuram Government medical college hospital. On receiving the information from the hospital, Panagudi police filed a criminal case 66/2021 under sections 294(4), 323, 506 (2) IPC 1860 r/w of 4 TNPHEW act 2002). Joseph misused his position and used the home a place to satiate his sexual urges. The hapless children and elders are his victims. People from the area gathered in the hospital and demanded immediate arrest of both Joseph and the woman who tried to silence the Rajamma with lethal blows. The locals wanted the government to order a probe to find out if there are more victims and shift them to government-run homes after sealing the home run by the father Joseph. The incident has sent shock waves in the district. As usual, the media did not consider the crime committed by Catholic priest worth reporting. The powerful Catholic Church lobby will do all the tricks in its bag to fizzle out the case by threatening Rajamma to withdraw her statement to police” sources say.
Woman professor has accused Tirunelveli Xavier College principal (Vanniar caste) of harassing her. In December last year, Catholic Nadars Association laid a siege at the principal room and brought his notice happenings in the college. One of the speakers said there were two suicides within the campus which were not known to the outside world. Now the woman principal who made accusations against the Principal is the in the same mood and may take extreme steps unable to bear the mental torture, harassment and agony. She said, “ you threatened her by saying the entire world know about you (character) and know your background. Is the way a Rev. Fr and principal speak to a women colleague? How did you know about the woman staff who joined much earlier to your joining? Why should you look at her chest inappropriately to check whether she wears ID card or not! Instead, you should ask her to show the ID card? It is unbecoming of a Father. You are here because of our pittance. Journalist Bala Gauthaman said, “Christians do not have faith on their Fathers or Pastors. The way he looked at the woman professor itself proved that his lustful probing eyes were searching beyond her blouse. It is high time the Priesthood system should be abolished in the country. The priesthood is being misused and they thing the post is a license to do immoral activities. Hardly a passes without the news of church fathers sexual assaults on nun and faithful who come for confession or prayer to Church. The church which boasts of casteless religion but the Nadars openly accused the Principal that after his coming from Dindigul they have been suffering a lot”.
‘Ananikkum Karangal’ (hands that hug) has admitted that they have been indulging in religious conversion in prisons in Mainland India and Andaman island. In their website (prisonministry.net/akpmi ( Annaikkum Karangal Prison Ministry India) they state, “ we do the jail ministry in five days with Government permission. 1) educating the prisoners- more than 7000 convicts, 2) conducting the church service-30 missionaries are paid 3) admitting their children in various hostels and schools (800 children) 4) conducting marriages for the released prisoners 5) conducting medical camps in all the jails… our missionaries are visiting every week. My aims are too captive India prisoners. My vision is gospel should be spread over throughout India prisoners. By the grace of our lord, the prison ministry is more than 10,000 prisoners growing. The first prayer, one van is available and some best cameras. The van should be used to go to various prisons. The cameras for our missionaries”.
Annaikkum Karangal prison ministry India is a registered member of The International Network of Prison Ministries since 07, May 2002 and is in good standing with it. 15 medical college professors who were jailed when they protested seeking job security 30-35 years ago, saw the suffering of the inmates. After his release from prison, one professor, claimed, wrote to then CM MG Ramachandran to allow them to give counselling. Conceding to his request, the government had issued an order GO MS no.1244 dated 10-04-1982. Using this opportunity they have been converting inmates of various prisons in Mainland India and Andaman Island. In one Facebook post, they claim, “because of our help now many become professors in leading universities of Tamil Nadu”. It claims to have helped a life convict Sundaram in Chennai prison to become a medical doctor and another life convict has become a professor at Manonmani Sundaranar University. It has been offering coaching classes to prepare inmates to prepare and write 6,7,8,+2, BA, MA, MSc, M.Com and LLB examinations through distance learning mode and to do PhD. The number of people benefitted in this way is 8,650. Besides helping them and their family members getting married, finding jobs, medical and financial assistance. Also helped the prisoners to bury their enmity by making conciliatory meets with their rivals. It is a long list boasting its several activities which are social services on the face of it.
Political commentator Rama Venkatatri said “prison is a place for a change of mind to become good and not a place for religious conversions. It is a correctional institution but it has been a centre for conversions. The prisoners in jail are forced to either convert to Christianity within prison premises or support it after his release. According to available documents we can see their motive and massive agenda. Government Order has helped their illegal activities. Officials have been colluding with them. The NGO openly makes an appeal to donate generously or serve in their missionary activities. My question is why they have chosen the jails? Because the converted criminals would help them at times of need or facing trouble. There is a threat perception to our national security. Prisons are becoming a place for religious conversion centres. The police have been allowing to conduct prayer meeting within close proximity of the prison complex. The loud noise coming out of speakers were not good for people “.
Tirunelveli District secretary Er. Arumuga Kane has complained to the Superintendent of Police requesting him to take action against the Christian prayer meetings. He said the loud noise coming out of the conical speakers are causing noise pollution and affect the mental health of prisoners lodged in Palayamkottai Central prison. The function is being held at the Deaf and Dumb school playground. The prayers are being conducted in violation of pandemic norms and traffic rules and without police permission. In the name of prayers and festival, they are converting innocent people. We appeal to ban the function.