The Jacobite faction of the Malankara Church has criticised the State government, particularly Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, for what it describes as unleashing the police on the faithful.

President of the Viswasa Samrakshana Samity (organisation for the protection of faith) Elias Mar Athanasius told reporters here on Sunday that the police action was an apparent sign that the government was not in control of its force. He was referring to the police lathicharge on Jacobites on Saturday night. According to him, they had gathered at the St. Mary's church, Pazhamthottam, near Puthencruz, for the funeral of a fellow Jacobite. The police intervened and prevented the burial from taking place, he said.

Mar Athanasios alleged that the lathicharge was carried out in the presence of revenue authorities and smacked of highhandedness on the part of the government.

The Jacobite group expressed its dismay and sadness at the police action. The police action took place after Catholicos Baselios Thomas I, church secretary Thampu George Thukalan, and other leaders gathered at the Pazhamhtottam church.

Mathews Mar Anthimos and Elias Mar Eulios were also present at the press conference on Sunday.