Mumbai Catholics fight land acquisition move

They demand the civic body to revoke all land acquisition notices for river and road widening work.

Posted on November 29, 2012, 5:30 PM

Mumbai:Catholics in Mumbai plan to march through the city streets on Dec. 1 to protest Bombay Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) move to take over land from two churches and a Christian school in the city.

The BMC served notices to Our Lady of Assumption Church and St Joseph’s School in Kandivli and St. Anthony’s Church in Malad asking them to surrender portions of their land for development of civic infrastructure.

The Bombay Catholic Sabha along with the Save Our Land Committee (SOUL) would take out the rally and hold a meeting later to discuss their next course of action on Dec. 1.

The groups also demanded the BMC to revoke all land acquisition notices for river and road widening work.

The BMC has asked the Kandivli church to surrender 0.5 metre to 4 metre of width of land at various points along the boundary wall.

“The river is 36 metre wide near the church but at several points, it is 10 metre. Why can’t BMC widen those portions and deepen the river to increase the holding capacity,” said Dolphy D’souza, SOUL spokesperson.




Saturday, 1st December at 4.30pm





Locals protest church, school acquisition notice
BMC serves order on two churches and a school in Kandivli for nullah widening project
DNA Correspondent

Angered by the civic body’s acquisition notices to two churches and a school, Kandivli locals have demanded that they withdraw the notices and have planned a protest rally on December 1.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) issued the acquisition notices to St Joseph High School and churches Our Lady of the Assumption and St Anthony’s in Kandivli asking them to handover a stretch of land for its proposed nullah widening projects across the city.
“The civic body wants parts of the cemetery, school ground and the two churches for widening the Poisar river. If we agree, we will loose a playground which nearly 1,700 children use and our ancestors’ graves,” said Dolphy D’Souza, spokesperson of Save Our Land Committee (SOUL).
D’Souza said that the 36m-wide nullah is the widest at the school and the church. Its width varies between 4 and 20 metres at other locations. “At some places, there is no space for the flow of the water as they are encroached by slums, covered with garbage, etc. The civic body now wants to widen the nullah at the churches and the school instead of using alternative methods like clearing the debris or deepening the nullah,” she said.
Godfrey Pimenta of Sahar Citizens Forum, who is supporting SOUL, asked, “A nullah in Marol (east) is being deepened. Then why can’t they do that here?”
St Anthony’s has also been proposed as a Grade II-A structure in the draft heritage list. “So we have asked civic officials to consult the heritage committee first.” Pimenta added.
SOUL also questioned the civic body’s proposed move of widening the Malad-Madh road.
“The area falls under the Coastal Regulation Zone and the No Development Zone beyond St Anthony’s. Defence establishment INS Hamla has also objected to the development due to security reasons in the past. Despite all these, the BMC is going ahead with widening the road,” D’Souza said.
To voice their demands, SOUL has also planned a ‘Peace rally’ on Saturday, December 1 in Kandivli (W).

Published Date:  Nov 29, 2012

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Church must play greater roles in health care: Archbishop

He said India has witnessed remarkable improvement in the health situation of the people.

Posted on November 29, 2012, 5:15 PM


The Church in India has to play greater roles to meet the health care needs of the poor in the changing situations of the country, says Archbishop Bernard Moras, former head of Indian bishops’ health care ministry.

The prelate said this on his return from the 27th International Conference of the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care held in Rome Nov. 15-20.

In his paper presented at the conference on ”Catholic Hospitals in a Challenging World,” he said India has witnessed remarkable improvement in the health situation of the people.

The country has witnessed gradual but steady growth in the personnel, healthcare facilities and the availability of some of the best treatment and healthcare facilities, he said.

However, a vast majority of the people, especially the poor in under-served areas, found basic survival itself as a daily struggle and health a distant dream. Many people did not have access to affordable healthcare or even safe drinking water and sanitation, he said.

”The costs of medical care have risen to such prohibitive levels making facilities unavailable to many and leading to medical systems becoming unsustainable. High technology has an inhuman face leading to people feeling isolated and fragmented,” he said.

Icon from Nuvola icon theme for KDE 3.x.

The Church runs some 3,300 health care institutions in India, including large, medium and small hospitals, health centers and diocesan social service societies. The country also enjoys the services of 600 nun-doctors, 25,000 nun-nurses and 10,000 plus Religious para-professionals with roughly 21 million accessing Catholic healthcare facilities annually.

Though Catholics constitute barely 2 % of the country’s total population, the Catholic health facilities account for around 20 % of the healthcare provided in India, Archbishop Moras said.

The Church also runs 165 leprosy treatment centers, 416 healthcare centers for the aged, 62 centers for tuberculosis treatment and the terminally ill, 67 community care centers for people with HIV/AIDS and 60 counseling centers.


Bangalore ,Health Care ,Archbishop Bernard Moras ,Health Pastoral Care
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