Malankara Jacobite, Orthodox churches: Govt issues guidelines
KERALAMar 2, 2006Guidelines to resolve church dispute Malankara Jacobite, Orthodox churches: Govt issues guidelines
Thursday March 2 2006 00:00 ISTTHIRUVANATHAPURAM: With the warring Malankara Orthodox and Jacobite churches refusing to see eye-to-eye, the State Government has gone ahead and issued a set of guidelines to both the groups.
We have discussed the guidelines with both the groups but have not received their consent, Chandy told a post-cabinet press briefing here on Wednesday.
The following are the guidelines framed by the State Government:
** Bilateral discussions should be held to open all closed churches for religious service.
Churches not embroiled in legal or law and order problems should be opened without delay. The bilateral decision will not stand in the way of legal proceedings, Chandy assured. Bilateral decisions will be based on the court verdict.
** Status quo will be maintained in churches where services are being conducted. Status quo can be changed by mutual consent and the court verdict. If there is any dispute regarding status quo, the District Collector will seek the legal opinion of the government pleader or Advocate-General.
The Collector's decision will be final. If there is a difference of opinion, the opposing party will be given three working days time to appeal to the court.
Both the sides will show maximum leniency with regard to funeral rites. If it becomes impossible to arrive at an agreement, the District Collector will take an appropriate decision for conducting the funeral.
The Collector's decision will not be used as a precedent.Thiruvananthapuram, March. 1 (PTI): The Kerala Government today announced guidelines to deal with the long pending dispute between Orthodox and Jacobite factions of Malankara Orthodox church in the state.The dispute relates to control over churches.Talking to reporters after a cabinet meeting,Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, said guidelines had been issued to both groups for consideration and expressed the hope that they would co-operate with the government in resolving the issues.The Government's stand was to open all closed churches that did not involve law and order and legal problems, he said.Status quo would be maintained in institutions and churches where worship was going on and changes could be made in status quo either through consensus or court verdict.Chandy said the main objective of the guidelines was to arrive at a working arrangement between the two factions.
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