NHRC notices on church attack

NHRC notices on church attack

The National Human Rights Commission has issued notices to the Secretary of Union Home Ministry, Chief Secretary of the city government and Delhi Police Commissioner seeking a detailed report into the allegations of desecration of the sanctity of the St Alphonsa’s Church in Vasant Kunj in the early hours of Monday.

The NHRC has given 10 days to officials to respond and give details of the status of investigation.
The commission took suo motu cognisance of the reports about the incident of breaking open the doors of the church and defiling the place of worship and objects held sacred.

“The commission also received a telephonic information from Manoj V George, advocate alleging that in spite of a formal complaint by Father Vincent Salvatore, Parish Priest, police were not taking necessary action by registering a proper FIR and commencing effective investigation,” the NHRC said in a statement.

“Since the intention of the offenders appears to insult a particular religion and the incident is likely to promote disharmony and enmity, the matter involves issues related to violation of human rights and requires the intervention of the commission,” it added.

NHRC member, Justice Cyriac Joseph accompanied by officials had visited the church on Monday. “Father Vincent explained to the NHRC team, the nature and the extent of damage caused to the church. He alleged that the intention of the miscreants was not to commit theft or burglary, as neither the money kept in three offering boxes nor any valuable object were taken away,” the NHRC said.

“It was rather to desecrate the sanctity of the church and create a sense of insecurity in the minds of religious minority. He also expressed the apprehension that there was an attempt to downplay the incident as mere a theft or burglary,” it added.

However, the ACP and SHO present on the spot denied the allegations.
“The ACP assured that FIR will be registered on the basis of the written complaint dated February 2 and the statement recorded by police from Father Vincent Salvatore,” the NHRC said.