The Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has asked the AP (Andhra Pradesh) social welfare department’s Principal Secretary to initiate action against those Christian pastors who obtained the Disaster Relief Fund of Rs 5000 from the state government despite holding Hindu SC/OBC caste certificates. The action was taken on the basis of a complaint lodged by LRPF (Legal Rights Protection Forum) in this regard.
Union Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment directed Principal Secretary, AP Social Welfare Dept to take action against Christian Pastors who received Rs.5K through 'Disaster Relief Fund' by holding Hindu SC/OBC Caste Certificates. Asked to submit Action Taken Report. https://t.co/RRKjV6R4CG pic.twitter.com/vVdBbSwCMi
— Legal Rights Protection Forum (@lawinforce) November 6, 2020
Hindupost had reported that LRPF had brought to light the massive misuse of Disaster Relief Funds in the state of Andhra Pradesh where Christian converts were drawing dual benefits by holding Hindu SC/OBC certificates and at the same time claiming the one-time relief sum of Rs 5000 given to Christian pastors.
The report had highlighted:
The summary of the Christian beneficiaries brings forth the fact that a huge number of Christians who have been baptized as well as undergone pastor training courses still retain their Hindu caste certificates.
They are, thus, misusing scare government funds by holding dual religious identities to benefit out the government schemes through fraudulent means. They take advantage of welfare schemes meant for SCs and OBCs by using their Hindu caste certificates and when government hands out doles to Christians then they switch over to their Christian identity.
The real danger as alleged by LRPF is when the Jagan Mohan Reddy government will begin fulfilling its election promise of regular monthly payments to Christian pastors. They have already mooted the proposal and invited applications from pastors in the state. However, it is quite shocking and inexplicable that the government has not made it compulsory for the prospective beneficiaries to submit Christian community certificate along with their applications.
This, in effect, has made it possible for those Christians holding Hindu caste certificates to avail of the one-time sum of rupees 5000 and later claim the monthly benefits by showing themselves as Christians.
LRPF has alleged this encouragement provided by the present government will allow SCs to convert to Christianity while at the same time allowing them to corner constitutional benefits reserved for SCs without any obstacles and hassles.
In this regard LRPF, a legal NGO fighting for the rights of indigenous people had approached the National Scheduled Castes (SC) and Backward Castes (BC) commissions asking for their interference in this matter so that genuine Hindus belonging to the SC and BC categories do not lose out on the benefits meant for them.
Responding to LRPF’s complaint, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has sent a written directive today (06/11/2020) to the Principal Secretary of AP’s social welfare department asking them to take the necessary action in the matter as well as submit an action taken report to the Ministry and LRPF.
It is expected that the AP social welfare department would act in a time-bound manner and ensure action is taken against those Christian pastors who received the disaster relief sum and still hold Hindu caste certificates despite having converted out of Hindu Dharma.
Did you find this article useful? We’re a non-profit. Make a donation and help pay for our journalism.