Modi Govt’s crack down on AP Pastors


It is well known that a vast majority of the Dalits in India go to the church but they remain Hindus on paper to claim various benefits especially the educational and job reservations. No Government at the Centre dared to challenge or change this ever. But now, the Modi Government is looking at this issue but in a different way. In its latest order, the Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment asked the Principal Secretary of Social Welfare, Andhra Pradesh, to take action against all those Christian pastors whose caste certificates still say they are Hindus.

This has come up in the wake of a complaint made by the Hyderabad-based Legal Rights Protection Forum. It was found that over 70 per cent of the total 29,841 pastors, who took Disaster Relief during the Coronavirus epidemic in AP, were actually Hindus and thus not eligible for this. The Jagan Government gave Rs. 5,000 as Covid relief assistance to these pastors. These 70 per cent pastors originally carry SC and OBC certificates which means they are Hindus still on paper. But, they have converted long back and they have been practising Christianity.

The Centre has asked the AP officials to submit an action taken report to it on the issue of ‘Hindu pastors’. Analysts say that the latest actions indicate a dual approach adopted by the BJP to be both friendly and unfriendly to the Jagan Reddy regime considering the prevailing political atmosphere. Being a pure champion of the Hindu cause, the BJP cannot sit silently forever if other religions get undue support in the State. It can allow Polavaram, Amaravati, AP to lose but not the Hindu religion to suffer.

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