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I am a Love Jihadi: KP Sasi to Kerala church Cardinal

Syro-Malabar church synod had attracted scathing criticism in January for their comments about Christian girls being lured by Muslim youth. Now a film-maker responds with an open letter to the Cardinal.

Sabrangindia 18 Feb 2020

KP Sasi

Earlier this year, top clergy members of Kerala’s Syro - Malabar Church had set the cat among the pigeons when they claimed that Love Jihad was rampant in the state and as many as 12 Christian women had fallen prey to it.

The synod or council of bishops headed by Cardinal George Alencherry had allegedly claimed that Muslim youth would first lure impressionable Christian girls, then marry and forcible convert them to Islam. Some of these women were forced or manipulated into joining terrorist groups while some ended up dead.

Interestingly, the police all but shot down the claim. DGP Loknath Behera told mediapersons, “There is no data to hint at the existence of love jihad. I haven’t received any complaint so far. If there is any complaint, we will monitor it.”

The church’s stand has since then attracted scathing criticism. The latest salvo comes from film-maker, cartoonist and writer. In an open letter to Cardinal Alencherry that appears on Countercurrents, Sasi says, “Sir, I read the statement initiated by you representing Syro Malabar Church, first with amusement, and then with deep concern, not for the already marginalised status of Islam in India, but for the status of your own Church. Your statement pointed out that many Christian girls are `lured’ by the Muslims through `Love Jihad’. It also pointed out that among the 21 people from Kerala recruited by IS a couple of years back, almost half were converted from the Christian community.”

Sasi goes on to say, “You are responsible for generating a fear psychosis among the Christian community in Kerala by targeting the Muslims by saying:  `It is a reality that ‘Love Jihad’ is happening in Kerala in a planned manner targeting Christian girls. Christian girls are killed in the name of love jihad’. I do understand that this statement from a responsible person like you representing one of the highest positions in the Church hierarchy is a major disruption of inter faith relationship among the common Christians and Muslims in Kerala.” 

He asks, “Why is a Cardinal Bishop siding with the Kerala State BJP and the Sangh Parivar in Kerala to attack the Muslims with an already disproven subject like `love jihad’?” Sasi adds, “What is not acceptable to many in Kerala is also the implications of your statement on the ordinary Hindu, Christian and Muslim people of Kerala. When you say that Christian girls are being `lured’ by Muslim youths, you are only insulting the Christian girls.”

Sasi concludes by saying, “This open letter is not meant to question your integrity, faith or your role as a Christian leader, since you are a much bigger person than me. This letter is only an appeal not to enjoy the walk through the blood of other communities.”

The entire letter may be read here

I am a Love Jihadi: KP Sasi to Kerala church Cardinal

Syro-Malabar church synod had attracted scathing criticism in January for their comments about Christian girls being lured by Muslim youth. Now a film-maker responds with an open letter to the Cardinal.

KP Sasi

Earlier this year, top clergy members of Kerala’s Syro - Malabar Church had set the cat among the pigeons when they claimed that Love Jihad was rampant in the state and as many as 12 Christian women had fallen prey to it.

The synod or council of bishops headed by Cardinal George Alencherry had allegedly claimed that Muslim youth would first lure impressionable Christian girls, then marry and forcible convert them to Islam. Some of these women were forced or manipulated into joining terrorist groups while some ended up dead.

Interestingly, the police all but shot down the claim. DGP Loknath Behera told mediapersons, “There is no data to hint at the existence of love jihad. I haven’t received any complaint so far. If there is any complaint, we will monitor it.”

The church’s stand has since then attracted scathing criticism. The latest salvo comes from film-maker, cartoonist and writer. In an open letter to Cardinal Alencherry that appears on Countercurrents, Sasi says, “Sir, I read the statement initiated by you representing Syro Malabar Church, first with amusement, and then with deep concern, not for the already marginalised status of Islam in India, but for the status of your own Church. Your statement pointed out that many Christian girls are `lured’ by the Muslims through `Love Jihad’. It also pointed out that among the 21 people from Kerala recruited by IS a couple of years back, almost half were converted from the Christian community.”

Sasi goes on to say, “You are responsible for generating a fear psychosis among the Christian community in Kerala by targeting the Muslims by saying:  `It is a reality that ‘Love Jihad’ is happening in Kerala in a planned manner targeting Christian girls. Christian girls are killed in the name of love jihad’. I do understand that this statement from a responsible person like you representing one of the highest positions in the Church hierarchy is a major disruption of inter faith relationship among the common Christians and Muslims in Kerala.” 

He asks, “Why is a Cardinal Bishop siding with the Kerala State BJP and the Sangh Parivar in Kerala to attack the Muslims with an already disproven subject like `love jihad’?” Sasi adds, “What is not acceptable to many in Kerala is also the implications of your statement on the ordinary Hindu, Christian and Muslim people of Kerala. When you say that Christian girls are being `lured’ by Muslim youths, you are only insulting the Christian girls.”

Sasi concludes by saying, “This open letter is not meant to question your integrity, faith or your role as a Christian leader, since you are a much bigger person than me. This letter is only an appeal not to enjoy the walk through the blood of other communities.”

The entire letter may be read here

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