17 January 2018

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02/16/2017 INDIA

Elections in Mumbai: the Archdiocese does not endorse any candidate or political party

A video posted a few days ago seemed to show an alleged support of the Hindu nationalist party in government. An official statement reiterates that the local Church does not endorse any particular group. Catholic leaders invite people to vote. Awareness campaign in schools.


Mumbai (AsiaNews) - The Archdiocese of Mumbai, led by Card. Oswald Gracias, does not endorse any candidate or political party in the upcoming municipal elections of 21 February. A note from the diocese, dispels rumors circulating in recent days about a possible support of the local Church of the Hindu nationalist party in government.

Those doubts were born following a video posted online showing a friendly meeting between Cardinal and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. With its initiative, the archdiocese wants to avoid "the video being used to push people to vote for a particular candidate."

The statement, released on February 14, reads: "It is hereby clarified that the Archdiocese of Bombay and His Eminence, Oswald Cardinal Gracias, have always encouraged all persons to execute their constitutional right of voting. However, the Catholic Church does not endorse or support any particular party or candidate".

Voting for the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, (BMC) will be held next week. The election campaign is heating up and this is why The Examiner, the official weeks archdiocese, urged the 250 thousand local Catholics to go to the polls.

Fr. Anthony Charangat, editor, said that the political assembly of Mumbai is the richest in all of India. "In 2012 - he added - some candidates won with a thin majority of just 21, 58, 82 or 128 votes. Even a single street, building or neighborhood can determine the balance. This can lead to coalitions to cobble together some majority. "

According to the priest, "it is the responsibility of every citizen to make sure that the funds are used in the best way. For this they have to leave home and go to vote. " Together with the Director, other Catholic leaders argue the importance of voting. This is the case of Gerson Da Cunha, who gave birth to Action for Good Governance and Networking in India (AGNI), supported by the Diocesan Commission for Education (ABE). The aim is to sensitize children on the subject, so that they can then take home the knowledge gained and urge parents to take part in elections.

In this regard, Fr. George Athaide, Secretary of EBA, organized meetings for eight school principals, two for each school. Agni prepared three videos for teachers, to be projected in the classroom and shown to 300 thousand schoolchildren. "In the last election - said Da Cunha - we had a turnout equal to 38.44%. This time will we reach the 60%? ".

See also

08/03/2012 INDIA
Elections, Hindu nationalists win in Christian Goa
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) wins 24 seats, Congress (Inc) only 9. Candidacy of 6 Catholics among the ranks of the Hindu nationalist party fundamental. Fr. Theodore Mascarenhas: "Catholics are tired of corruption; they want to trust the BJP candidate. Now they must prove that there will be no discrimination. "

09/12/2008 INDIA
Congress wins in three states out of five. BJP defeated in elections
The party of prime minister Manmohan Singh keeps control of the state of Delhi, and wins Rajasthan and Mizoram. The BJP keeps Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh, but falls to 142 seats, down from 173 in 2003.

14/03/2017 12:19:00 INDIA
Modi triumphs in India's regional elections and pushes the decline of Rahul Gandhi

Last week five Indian states elected local assemblies. The Prime Minister’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party excelled in two States, where it will rule alone, while in two others it will form a coalition. His victory comes from a political paralysis and the main opposition leadership, the Congress Party, chaired by Sonia Gandhi but driven by his son Rahul.


13/07/2006 INDIA
No one can make India kneel, says Indian PM
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh spoke to the nation in a live address broadcast on all TV channels in which he praised national unity and challenged the terrorists. India's Foreign Ministry urges Pakistan to cooperate in the struggle against terrorism without preconditions.

17/04/2007 INDIA
Vigilantes on the rampage against ‘immorality’, smash TV station, burn Richard Gere effigies
Hindu nationalist groups carry out violent ‘punitive’ actions and public protest against people guilty in their eyes of immoral behaviour. In Mumbai one group storms and ransacks TV station that reported ‘immoral’ story. Protests against Richard Gere kissing Shilpa Shetty continue.

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