Sajan George issues 15 Point Charter after Conference of Christian Martyrs in Banglore


The 15-point `Charter of Request to the Government of India through the National Commission for Minorities included

I. Implement Constitutional Provisions (Including freedom to Practice, Profess and Propagate Faith; and provisions of Articles 25 to 30). Reverse discriminatory laws such as the Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Orissa, MP, Chhatisgarh and Arunachal Freedom of Religion Acts.

II. Full Civil and Constitutional Rights to Dalit Christians. Take steps to encourage Political and Social uplift by correcting the aberrant policies that today injure the rights of Dalit Christians. This is not an issue of mere reservations in government jobs, but of equal opportunity in all spheres of political and economic activity.

III. Reassure Minorities on the Rule of Law by curbing Communalism, prosecuting hate crimes and those guilty of violence such as the Sangh Parivar and other elements. State and Central Governments, District administrations and Police must take suo motu notice of such hate campaigns, which lead to violence eventually. FIRs must be statutorily registered in cases of anti-Christian violence and harassment.

IV. Issue a White paper on the condition of Christians in India, including the matter of so called forced conversions. Set up an economic and quality of life enquiry commission on the pattern of the Justice Rajendra Sachchar Commission for Muslims, to assess the poverty and disempowerment of poor Christians and specially Dalit and OBC MBC Christians.

V. Implement PM`s 15 Point Programme 1983, and Dr Manmohan Singh`s revised programme 2006, in full. Monitor devolution of funds meant for minorities in the budgets of various Ministries so that Christians – particularly OBC MBC get their share.

VI. Evolve Economic programmes and credit and financial systems to spark entrepreneurial activity in the community, generate self employment

VII. Special income generation and housing schemes for minorities in rural areas – farmers, landless peasantry, agriculture labour and traditional craftsmen

VIII. Expanding and monitoring of National Minorities Development Finance Corporation

IX. Honest implementation of Article 30 specially to encourage educational institutions in sunrise areas, such as medical engineering, Information technology and management and engineering colleges. Gujarat and some other States must immediately stop curbing the freedom of Christian schools in appointing Principals, Head mistresses and Managers in place of retiring Nuns.

X. Ensure adequate and compensatory representation of Christians in particular in Civil, Military, Administrative and Judicial services. The entire state of J&K has just one Gazette Officer, a Policeman who is transferred all too frequently

XI. The harassment in VISA provisions and the bigotry in FCRA and administration must end. Government must ensure that foreign-born wives of Indian religious workers, including protestant Pastors, and their children are allowed entry into the country on spouse visa as is case for other citizens.

XII. Check constitutionality of some laws that seem to bar Christians from some areas, such as in Andhra. Also laws that allow religious books of some religions being sold at Rail Stations but bars Bible`s presence on stations.

XIII. End victimization of certain categories of Converts to Christianity. This includes the Catholics of Kashmir Pundit origin that has been victims both of terrorism and of State apathy and vicissitude. These refugees are not on the horizon of State concern at all.

XIV. Consult the Christian community in the formulation of the Five Year Plans and the Plans of HRD and other ministries

XV. And finally, urgently bring forward laws on Adoption and Christian marriages, which have been in cold storage for many years.

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