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New Delhi, 10 September 2022

Churches Call for Dialogue, Amity Between Communities

Together with the Christian community in India, the Council of Evangelical Churches, expresses its deep distress a the circumstances developing in the state of Punjab in recent days. Urgent steps are called for to diffuse any tension between the Sikh and Christian communities, both religious minorities in India, at this critical juncture in the life of the nation.

The Council, which represents members of the Evangelical and Pentecostal churches, suggests that religious leaders of the two communities, together with people of goodwill, sit down and bring the process of  reconciliation and long term peace.

The people of Punjab have had more than share of tragedy, pain and grief in the past. In the present times, it is grappling with issues of unemployment, drugs, and the fall out of the economic crisis as a consequence of the pandemic.

It is good that all communities have  resolutely condemned the terrible acts of violence against churches in recent days. The desecration of the statue of Mary and Jesus, is a slur on the state known for its piety and respect for religions. The burning of the car on 31st August 2022 in Takkarpura village is vandalism by people with no respect for the rule of law.

We are glad the state government and the police are doing their job and have assured safety and security to the community.

Lasting peace is based on the friendship and amity between the people.  This is best achieved through dialogue. For this, the rule of law and the guarantees of the Constitution of India are provide the lawful platform. The faithful believers of all religions, including Sikhism and Christianity, derive their confidence from the Constitution  as citizens who practice their faith wherever they live throughout the country. It is for every citizen to make his or her individual choices.

The Council of Evangelical Churches will be happy to participate in any dialogue that strengthens peace and the Constitution of India.

Issued by Dr Richard Howell on behalf of the Council of Evangelical Churches in India.

Council of Evangelical Churches in India