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Sam Paul's letter to the DGP-Kerala

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  • SOCM News Bureau
    The Director General of Police Kerala 10th April 2008 Respected Sir, Greetings to you from All India Christian Council. We thank God for your good work for the
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 13, 2008
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      The Director General of Police Kerala

      10th April 2008

      Respected Sir,

      Greetings to you from All India Christian Council.

      We thank God for your good work for the Kerala citizens and pray for
      wisdom and protection for our police forces. I would like to submit
      to you that the official judgment of the Honorable Supreme court is
      out on the Divine Retreat Centre alleged Sexual abuse, and alleged
      unnatural deaths, etc.

      The court order proves that there was no truth in the fabricated
      cases against this world's largest Catholic Centre that has brought
      solace, healing and joy to Lakhs and Lakhs of people from all
      religions in India and several from abroad.

      This is to submit to your good office to initiate appropriate
      investigation on the Police officers that have connived with anti-
      social elements to throw mud on this divine retreat centre. Kindly
      arrange to investigate their interest in causing this tortuous
      harassment to the centre, the leadership there. Did the police
      officers that did this receive any money as a gift? or promotions or
      what other kind of favors have they got? Kindly arrange to
      investigate the matter and give them the due punishment for this
      slur they brought on the image of Kerala police. This news is spread
      worldwide and it brings a shame to our wonderful country and a shame
      on all the upright officers that labor day and night and do their
      jobs faithfully.

      Thanking you for looking into this and taking the appropriate action
      as necessary.

      Sincerely Yours,

      Dr. Sam Paul
      National Secretary,
      All India Christian Council
      +91-9989697778

      Encl: Pls see below:

      ------------------------------------------------------------

      India Supreme Court Drops all Charges Against World's Largest
      Catholic Retreat Center Humiliating raids carried out by police,
      sick subjected to "tortuous harrassment"

      By John Jalsevac

      KERALA, India, April 8, 2008 (LifeSiteNews. com) - For several years
      the world's largest Catholic retreat centre has had a cloud hanging
      over its head. In 2006 an anonymous letter sent to the High Court of
      Kerala accusing the Divine Retreat Centre of sexual abuse, the
      violation of foreign exchange regulations, and suggesting
      that "unnatural deaths" had occurred at the centre, set in motion an
      extensive police investigation into the centre.

      The director of the Divine Retreat Centre, Fr. Augustine Valooran,
      has said that the several-years-long police investigation amounted
      to nothing more than ongoing "harassment" that interfered with the
      centre's spiritual and charitable work.

      "We, at Divine Retreat Centre, the world's largest Catholic Retreat
      Centre located in Kerala, India, had welcomed the investigation and
      have been giving it our full cooperation," he said in a recent
      statement. "However, we had no inkling of what was to come. The
      police team began to harass us and disturb the smooth functioning of
      the daily services of our retreats.

      "We were especially shocked by the humiliating manner in which the
      police raids were carried out in the Centre on 30 September and 01
      October 2006. What pained us the most was the way the sick were
      subjected to torturous harassment. Even the AIDS patients and the
      mentally challenged were not spared! We were deeply grieved at this
      cruelty."

      Just before Easter, however, Fr. Vallooran, released a statement
      announcing that the Supreme Court had ruled that all of the charges
      agains the Centre should be dropped. The court also ruled that
      anonymous tips should not be used to initiate "suo motu"
      ("on its own motion") investigations of the sort that the retreat
      centre was subjected to by the High Court.

      In 2006 and 2007 LifeSiteNews. com managing director, Steve
      Jalsevac, and editor-in-chief, John-Henry Westen, each visited the
      Divine retreat centre. What they both found was an astonishingly
      vibrant faith community that was not only promoting the authentic
      Catholic Christian faith with unapologetic vigor, but that was also
      taking care of thousands of the sick, including innumerable AIDS
      patients. Every week, year round, anywhere from 15,000 to 40,000
      people attend a retreat and with all participants housed and fed by
      the centre.

      However, what they also discovered is that, despite the internal
      strength and fervor of India's Christian community, it is still a
      minority, and is subject to disapproval and persecution from the
      larger majority of Muslims and Hindus in the country. In many parts
      of India anti-conversion laws have been put in place that prevent
      Christians from even attempting to engage their non-Christian
      neighbors in discussions about the faith.

      There have been a number of cases in recent years where Christian
      missionaries have been detained or arrested simply for attempting to
      share their faith with non-Christians. Such a case occurred in 2006,
      when police detained four Missionaries of Charity
      (MC) nuns on charges of attempting to convert people when the nuns
      visited a government-run hospital in the southern state of Andhra
      Pradesh.

      In the recent ruling, Justice S. H. Kapadia and Justice B. Sudershan
      Reddy quashed all of the charges leveled against the Divine Retreat
      Centre. But they also went further, criticizing the circumstances
      that began such an extensive and fruitless investigation based upon
      nothing more than an anonymous and unsubstantiated letter. "Setting
      the criminal law in motion is fraught with serious consequences,"
      wrote the justices. "The High Court cannot direct investigation by
      constituting a special investigation team (SIT) on the strength of
      anonymous petitions."

      Justice Reddy criticized the High Court for becoming "embroiled in
      the passions of the day." "History teaches us that the independence
      of the judiciary is jeopardized when courts become embroiled in the
      passions of the day and assume prime responsibility to resolve the
      issues which are otherwise not entrusted to it by adopting
      procedures which are otherwise not known."

      "There is heavy duty cast upon the constitutional courts to protect
      themselves from the onslaught unleashed by unscrupulous litigants
      masquerading as public interest litigants. The individual judges
      ought not to entertain communications and letters personally
      addressed to them and initiate action on the judicial side."

      Fr. Valooran, however, observed that there has been a positive
      outcome to the several-year-long investigation. "The verdict has
      helped to bring to light the true facts about the great humanitarian
      service carried out by the Retreat Centre," he said, "bringing great
      peace of mind and spiritual consolation to millions especially the
      sick and the suffering. The verdict is welcomed as recognition of
      the charitable works of the Catholic Church as a whole."
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