Mysore, Feb 5: Close on the heels of the attack by vandals on the Holy Family Church at Hinkal here, St. Mathias Church in Malavalli town was vandalised on Wednesday night.
The vandals forced opened the side doors of the church on Sultan Road in Malavalli town in Mandya district and took away vessels used for religious purposes and money kept in the donation box, besides damaging the tabernacle.
Senior police officials were not clear on whether it was an attack on the church or a robbery. But members of the community are describing the incident as an “organised attack to humiliate the Christian community and create fear among them”.
The incident came to light around 7 a.m. on Thursday, when the gardener of the church noticed the broken tabernacle and missing vessels; he immediately informed the priest, Father Anthappa. The police were informed and Superintendent of Police Koushalendra Kumar rushed to the spot along with a dog squad and fingerprint experts. Deputy Commissioner M.K. Ayyappa and Inspector-General of Police (Southern Range) J .V. Gaonkar also visited the spot.
Speaking to The Hindu, Mr. Koushalendra Kumar said that some miscreants broke open the locked side door of St. Mathias Church on Wednesday night and took away sacred vessels and clothes kept under lock and key. They also broke the tabernacle. “Security has been tightened for the churches in the district and two teams of senior officials have been formed to nab the culprits,” he said.
Father Anthappa said “it could be anything; an attempted robbery or an intentional attempt to desecrate the church”.
Parish priest N.S. Marie Joseph of the Holy Family Church of Hinkal, which was attacked recently, visited the spot and described the incident as an organised attack. Similar was the opinion of several Christian leaders of Malavalli.
On learning about the incident, Mysore MP A.H. Vishwanath visited the spot. He categorically ruled out the possibility of robbery and described the incident as a deliberate attempt to desecrate the church. He expressed fears that the incident might be retaliation by the Sangh Parivar to the interim report of Justice B.K. Somashekar Commission of Inquiry and held Home Minister V.S. Acharya responsible for the increase in attacks on religious places.
Meanwhile, workers of the Janata Dal (Secular), the Communist Party of India (CPI) and Communist Party of India (Marxist), under the leadership of former MLA Andani, protested in the town against the continuing attack on religious places and demanded resignation of the Government.
Courtesy: The Hindu