DEDICATED, to Parishioners of St. Anthony’s Church; Malwani. II of Part III

matter of CORRUPTION……Continues…

VOICE OF THE SILENT MAJORITY

(CATHOLICS FOR TRUTH TRANSPARENCY AND WEEDING OF CORRUPT PRACTICES AT PARISH LEVEL) 

It has been reliably learnt that Fr. Agnello, Parish Priest and SOLE TRUSTEE, tried to justify his actions, in Parish Pastoral Council (PPC) meeting, by saying that everything was done by following proper procedure.
I would not know how much support he managed to garner from the council members, but certainly few members, and quite a number of them, brought this to my notice which really amused me.
Surprisingly, four prominent members who are also members of the Finance and Property committee and are aware of the happening, did not make an attempt to counter his lies. We need not name them, since the PPC members and Parishioners know, who they are. Hopefully, some day their conscience will prick and they will realise that it is the MOTHER CHURCH they have to serve and not some corrupt individual.
Co-incidentally, this incident could have not come at more appropriate time, for you to understand the matter. This post narrates, in details, how the manipulation was done, in order to by pass the guidelines laid down by authorities.

GREG

 

 

MY LETTER TO PARISH PRIEST, NARRATING THE TRAIL OF CORRUPTION.

 

18th, January, 2018;

Dear Fr. Agnelo,
Thank you for acknowledging my support, in your last post on Property Committee group, on WhatsApp. However, I do not expect thanks for anything that I do, for my Church. I have been supporting the good deeds of others, as well as my own, for the Mother Church; and opposing the undesirable acts of everyone, against Her; for around a decade.
I will follow your advice henceforth, and bear in mind that I have to put up my suggestion at the agenda point. Thank you for the advice. But for now, I would like to delve on present issue of my E mail to Marius and you.
You may find my tone a bit sarcastic; yes I am trying to be as sarcastic as possible, in order to match your sarcasm, in your last post on WhatsApp.
My E mail emphasizes more on emotional/Sentimental narration of spoilt relation between two families because of some misunderstanding. Marius seems to have understood and has taken it into his stride, which was noticed during the meeting, and I was pleased. However, you picked up the unwanted thread, perhaps to assert your superiority. Not wanting to embarrass you with truth which certainly would expose your lies further, I tried to close the matter with statement, “I standby, what I have said”. But you seemed to be hell bent on asserting yourself, questioned my belief and put up the last post which stunk of sarcasm. Therefore, I will answer all your queries to your satisfaction.
First, the KITCHEN JOB: I did approach you and expressed my dissatisfaction, on spending huge amount, Rs 3.5Lakhs plus, on it. I agree to what you have stated. But you did not mention about the road widening, which I said, I am concerned about. You have stated that a Quotation was placed before the committee, which is not true. It was discussed that the kitchen was in bad shape and it required to be renovated. Every member agreed and approved it, without any discussion on the amount. I remember someone mentioning about the road widening matter. Considering this, the bare minimum amount should have been spent on renovation, which you agreed. Please bear in mind; I am the member of Property Committee and not Finance Committee. I therefore, would always consider myself ineligibles to comment on financial aspect. Road widening, if it occurs anytime, the kitchen will be the first target. SOUL Committee, fighting BMC has taken the decision to surrender the kitchen part, in order to save the parochial house, if BMC insisted.
Ground Leveling: I agree with you that all the quotations were placed on the table and the school contractor was offered the contract for the lowest bid, and he increased the amount when the scope of work was explained to him, you say. I find it difficult to accept it. How he could quote in first place, without understanding the scope of job he is required to carry out? However, I would like to state here, there was no bid placed by Eapen Varghese, at this stage. He was brought in later. So it is not right to say that with the increase in amount by school contractor, Eapen Varghese became the lowest. His was the only tender that was placed before the committee, later. No doubt, he is an experienced contractor, I don’t deny that. And he has done a good job, and still doing it. But since it was a fresh process, some more bids should have been called, to make it competitive. Now I have a doubt in my mind, was the contractor tricked into increasing the amount in order to bring in Eapen Varghese? Was the lower quote by Eapen Varghese linked to the assurance that the peripheral task would be assigned to him? These questions need to be answered. Surprisingly, none of the Finance Committee members raised this issue.
After assigning the ground leveling job to him, he was further assigned the task of tarring the peripheral area, without inviting bids. Is it right to assign a job worth over seven Lakhs, as it was mentioned in the last meeting, to one person, without following due process?
Fr. Agnelo, to top it all, at the last meeting you tried to push a proposal worth fifteen lakh Rupees, with three quotations from one person for three different jobs. It was for putting up permanent shades on top of the two stages and the other one, I fail to remember. Wisely enough, one of the Property committee member objected to it, and you quietly withdrew the proposals. Surprisingly, finance committee members were silent at this point also, though they were vocal after the withdrawal.
I believe, a suggestion was made to move the stage to the center of the ground, now that the ground has been renovated, but it was rejected citing the huge expenditure it would incur, I wouldn’t know, how huge. Surprisingly, over two and half lakhs were spent, just to resurface the existing stage, without calling for tenders.
I am sure; you know that Church affair is governed by Canon Law, so I need not explain it to you. Canon Law 537 reads “In each Parish there is to be a finance committee, to help the parish Priest in the administration of the goods of Parish. It is ruled by Universal Law and by the norms laid down by Diocesan Bishop.” The entire amount for job carried out, in renovation of the ground, and the kitchen has gone much beyond the amount stipulated, within your authority.
Commonly known norms, I believe, are 1. There should be at least three quotations from different bidders, for any work to be carried out. 2. Approval from Bishop is a must, for the amount exceeding Rupees Four Lakhs, for any work. Hence, don’t you think, you have bypassed the directives and violated both the norms here? In that case, I would say, it amounts cheating Bishop and the Church. Don’t you think so?
Fr. Agnelo, you seem to be concerned about negative feedback that you are getting, because of the mail on social media. Since you have brought up an issue of Negative Feedback; the negative feedback, the parishioners are getting, is quite embarrassing to them. You should be concerned more about it. I am referring to your alleged addiction to share market dealing, the whole day, which most of the parishioners seem to be aware of, and they talk in hushed voices. Because of which you are not in loop with the parishioners. Some illiterate minds think, it is the gambling that you are indulging in.
As an advocate of truth & transparency in Parish affairs, this information will be shared with members of Property and Finance Committee, and also with parishioners at large. While you are SOLE TRUSTEE of the Church, the Parishioners are SOLE OWNERS of the Church. They have every right to know about everything that is happening within, except certain confidential information, of course.

GREG

Copy to: H. E. Oswald Cardinal Gracias, Archbishop of Mumbai: Your Eminence, doing this doesn’t please me. I am sure; you remember my assurance to you that I would like to keep good relation with Fr. Agnelo, in order to maintain Harmony in the parish. However, I have no choice, for which I regret.

 

 

WE ARE COMMITTED TO VOICE OUR CONCERN, AGAINST ANY UNDESIRABLE ACTIONS WITHIN THE CHURCH, 

 (To be Continued)

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Editor’s ARROGANT BEHAVIOR towards Sons of the Soil;

 

The EXAMINER, A Catholic Newsweekly, carried a letter under a caption, “East Indian Culture is Dying”; in the issue of 13th – 19th October, 2018. The letter was derogatory to the community, and the entire community has been agitated about it.

Many of them demanded an apology from the writer as well as from the Editor. One of them even threatened to go on hunger strike. None of their letter are published in the earlier issue as well as the current one. Instead, a statement has been published, which smacks of ARROGANCE, and it reads:

The space allotted to this section in a publication is to provide a forum for a healthy debate and a free exchange of opinions on a topic, provided it does not cross the legitimate limits of propriety by indulging in defamation, slander or calumny. Given this criteria, in the absence of the Editor who is on sick leave, the Editorial Board is authorised to select the matter for this column accordingly. The Board will not succumb to any coercion for demands of an apology, when an objective and fair reading of the content of the letter does not stand the test of this scrutiny.

Signed/- Editor 

We too, had responded to the letter, with request to the Editor to publish it, which they didn’t. Hence publishing it here for the perusal of our readers.

GREG

OUR RESPONSE TO THE LETTER

GREG R PEREIRA
A7 Rodrigues Compound, Malwani Village, Marve Rd.
Malad (W), Mumbai – 400095;
Contact: Cell: 9870719628;
E Mail: pereiragreg1611@gmail.com

19th, October, 2018;
To,

The Editor
THE EXAMINER

Sir:- This is with reference to a letter, captioned “East Indian Culture is Dying”; in the issue of 13th – 19th October, 2018.
I am surprised and it is beyond my understanding that how did this letter find place in the EXAMINER, which is so rigid about publishing any negative matter. Here, the writer has made derogatory statement about a community, the EAST INDIANS; the original inhabitants of the city; on whose lands most of our religious and educational institutions are standing. You should have thought twice, before publishing the letter.
It is not the writer that we hold responsible for offending sentiments of the community but you, for maligning the reputation of the community by publishing the views, coming out of some FOSSILISED brain; who is nonentity to us.
We as EAST INDIANS are proud of our community and culture irrespective of whatever our shortcomings are. Therefore we call upon you to tender an apology to the EAST INDIAN community, for this mischief that has been played.
You don’t have to apologize separately. Publishing this letter VERBATIM, in the forthcoming issue of the EXAMINER, will be considers as your humble apology.

GREG R. PEREIRA

 

Church schools in India among those that ‘should not exist

“In effect, they are asking to change the Indian constitution,” 

Hard-line Hindu group seeks shutdown of educational institutions belonging to religious minorities.

 

 

 

New Delhi: Muslim and Christian leaders in India see danger in a pro-Hindu group’s demand that the government revoke a policy allowing minority groups to own and manage educational institutions in the country.

A report released Oct. 10 by the Centre for Policy Analysis, a think tank of hard-line Hindu group Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, stated that allowing religious minority groups to have institutions for their own people was tantamount to “compartmentalization” that works against the unity of India.

“There is no rationale for the existence of a separate wing for education of minorities such as [the] National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions in the Ministry of Human Resource Development. Aren’t such types of national level regulating bodies compartmentalizing education on religious lines and weakening the national mainstream?” asked the report.

The Centre for Policy Analysis wants the government to discontinue the National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions, a legal body that advises the federal and state government on issues related to minority institutions.

Archbishop Thomas D’Souza of Calcutta, who chairs the Indian bishops’ office for education, said the demand goes against the provisions of the Indian constitution that allows religious minorities to establish and administer educational institutions of their choice to help advancement of their community members.

“In effect, they are asking to change the Indian constitution,” the archbishop told ucanews.com.

Technically, the Hindu group has only asked to close down the National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions. But by de facto the demand is to remove the provision to have minority institutions as the commission is the authority to grant minority status to an educational institution.

Established in 2004, the commission functions under the Ministry of Minority Affairs which this year has allocated 2.4 billion rupees (US$ 337 million) for educational reforms, including special grants and scholarships.

“All Indians, particularly religious minorities, should be afraid about such demands,” Archbishop D’Souza said.

Some 220 million people or 18.4 percent of 1.2 billion Indians are officially considered part of a religious minority. Some 140 million Muslims, the largest minority, constitute 13.4 percent of the population, while 27 million Christians (2.3 percent) are the second largest minority group. Other religious minorities are Sikhs (1.9 percent) Buddhists (0.8 percent) and Parsis (0.07 percent) of the country’s total population.

Molvi Javaid Ahmad, a Muslim cleric who runs a Madrassa in India’s northern state of Jammu and Kashmir, said educating and empowering people “isn’t an act of charity. It’s a governmental duty to ensure that communities are uplifted and allowed to prosper.”

Ahmad said official censuses have shown that Indian religious minorities are educationally poor. “In order to make India a developed nation, it has to facilitate the education of these disadvantaged communities,” he said.

The 2011 national census report showed that only 53 percent of Indian Muslims are literate, against the national average of 74 percent. The literacy rate is 68 percent among Sikhs, 72 among for Buddhists and 74 percent for Christians.

Christian leader Joseph Dias based in western Mumbai city told ucanews.com the think tank’s report is aimed at “polarizing people” on religious lines ahead of the national elections due in next May.

“Catholic institutions keep a high standard … And, a huge majority of students in them are non-Christians. So doing away with such institutions will hit the majority community more than minorities,” Dais said.

The country needs such skilled and professional educational institutions, he said. “Unless there is any parallel infrastructure of that level, it is futile to even discuss anything like this,” Dais added.

The Catholic Church in India runs some 50,000 educational institutions including 400 colleges, six universities and six medical schools.

Source: UCAN

Indian farmers to reap the pain of climate change

A UN report has warned of the dire consequences of lack of action, and the agriculture sector will suffer the most.

File photo.

New Delhi: India’s farmers will be hardest hit by global warming, with the effects of the climate crisis already being felt a generation ahead of predictions, experts have warned.

The dire warning comes after the Oct. 8 release of the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) report compiled by 91 climate experts from 40 countries.

The report warned that there were only a dozen years left for global warming to be kept to a maximum of 1.5 Celsius. After that, even a half a degree increase will significantly worsen the risks of drought, floods, extreme heat and impoverish hundreds of millions of people.

The report said “urgent and unprecedented changes” were needed to reach the target, which they described as “affordable and feasible.”

But it also warned that even if the increase can be held at 1.5C, as outlined in the more ambitious targets of the 2016 Paris Agreement, it may still not be enough to avert a climate crisis.

Professor Arumar Ravi, who co-authored the IPCC report, said it should be of particular concern for India.

He said summer temperatures could increase by 3C and weather patterns change dramatically, resulting in severe floods washing away farm land, homes, roads and bridges. Other side effects would be poverty, food shortages and increased pollution.

“The days we predicted would happen in our children’s times are happening in our own times now,” Ravi said. “But, if we act fast dramatic differences can occur and we can still make our world a safer place to live in.”

India is responsible for six percent of global carbon emissions, behind China (28 percent), the United States (16 percent) and the European Union (10 percent).

India’s commitment is to reduce its 2015 emission levels by 33-35 percent by 2030 through non-fossil fuels and alternative energy use.

N. C. Saxena, an expert on climate change in India, said the farm sector, which depends on water, will be the hardest hit sector by changing weather patterns.

As an example, Saxena said farmers in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh could see their incomes plunge by as much as 20 percent.

He said un-seasonal rains could lower sugarcane production in Maharashtra by 25-30 percent and rice-paddy farming in eastern Odisha state by 12 percent.

According to a study by Jayant Sathaye, P. R. Shukla and N. H. Ravindranath from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California, climate change is likely to impact natural ecosystems as well as socio-economic systems in India.

It noted that nearly two-thirds of India’s 1.2 billion people depend directly on climate-sensitive sectors such as agriculture, fisheries and forests. Climate changes are likely to affect food production, water supplies, biodiversity and livelihoods.

But according to Ravi development and action on climate change can co-exist. “Build buildings more efficiently, bring order in public transport; this gives a whole range of other benefits like improved health and less pollution,” he said.

Source: UCAN

Seven Christians languish in jail for 10 years

Oct. 4 marked 10th anniversary of the arrest of the three of the seven people accused of murdering Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati.

Kochi: The online campaign seeking release of seven Christians of Kandhamal, jailed for their alleged role in Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati’s murder, is gaining ground.

Journalsit-turned-social activist Anto Akkara, who launched the online drive, said that their illegal confinement in the jail, “is a blot on the judicial system of the country”.

According to Akkara, Oct 4 marks 10th anniversary of the arrest of the three persons, who were sentenced by the court.

“On this occasion, a programme was organized in Kochi, which was called off due to technical reasons,” Akkara said.

Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan had released a book — Who Killed Swami Laxmanananda? — written by Akkara’s in 2016, in which he exposes the Sangh Parivar conspiracy to frame seven innocent persons.

Despite producing evidence on the role of high-profile persons, the innocent Christians continue to languish in jail since 10 years, Akkara pointed out.

About travesty of justice in Kandhamal, Akkara said Durjo Sunamajhi, one of the accused, was on a Kerala-bound train to work in the canteen of Lissie Hospital in Ernakulam with his nephew on the day Swami Laxmanananda was murdered. Later, Durjo was convicted by the court, Akkara said.

Despite 71,600 persons signing the online petition, the innocents, including mentally challenged Munda Badamajhi, contimnue to languish in the jail, Akkara noted.

“It’s a shame for the nation that the appeal of the innocents challenging their questionable conviction of 2013 has been dragging on in the Odisha High Court for five years,” Akkara lamented.

Source: UCAN

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