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Churches hold protest marches and rallies

Staff Reporter

Demand immediate withdrawal of social science textbook

Kozhikode: Churches in rural areas coming under the Thamarassery diocese of the Syro-Malabar Church held rallies and meetings on Sunday, demanding immediate withdrawal of the class 7 social science textbook.

The Church alleges that the book has lessons capable of making the younger generation negate religion.

Sunday’s protests followed an emergency meeting of the priest conference, presided over by Thamarassery Bishop Mar Paul Chittilappally, at the diocesan office on Saturday. The meeting demanded immediate withdrawal of the textbook.

Protest marches were taken out after morning mass in churches at Thamarassery, Thiruvambady, Koodaranji, Pullurampara, Chembanode, Thekkumkutty and Koorachund, which have a sizeable Christian population, especially of Catholics. The marches concluded with meetings at the main junctions in these places.

To forane level

The diocese, which has 125 churches in Kozhikode and Malappuram districts, held protests in churches in the city last week. The protest will be held at the forane level next week.

The priest conference said that if the State government went ahead with the promotion of “negation of religion,” “atheism” and “communalism” in textbooks, the diocese would fight against it.

The conference said statements of the leaders of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the Students’ Federation of India against Christian religious heads and priests “smacked of their lack of propriety.” It alleged that the new curriculum was part of efforts to inject such a culture in the minds of the young generation.

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