Tamil Nadu

Madras High Court deletes contentious paragraph on Christian missionaries from verdict

Madras High Court. File photo.

Madras High Court. File photo.  

Justice S. Vaidyanathan accepts request to remove observations about Christian missionaries.

The Madras High Court on Tuesday agreed to remove a contentious paragraph from one of its judgments since it was related to accusations faced by Christian missionaries of indulging in forcible religious conversions and supposed “general feeling” among parents, especially of girl children, that co-educational Christian institutions were highly unsafe for the future of their children.

Justice S. Vaidyanathan agreed to delete the relevant paragraph from his verdict in a case filed by a Madras Christian College (MCC) professor accused of sexually harassing girls during a study tour to Karnataka in January this year. The decision to delete was taken after the MCC counsel made a representation in open court on Tuesday and urged the court to remove the observations.

 

The controversial paragraph read: “Before parting with the judgment, this Court feels it appropriate to point out that Christian missionaries are always on the source of attack in one way or the other and in the present era, there are several accusations against them for indulging in compulsory conversion of people of other religions into Christianity. Now, there is a general feeling amongst the parents of students, especially female students that co-educational study in Christian institutions is highly unsafe for the future of their children and though they impart good education, the preach of morality will be a million dollar question. As long as a religion is practised in streets in lieu of its worship places, like Temple, Mosque, Church, etc., such devastation, as in the present case, does occur and will be mushrooming.”

Since the judge had dismissed the writ petition filed by the faculty challenging a show cause notice issued to him by the college management, the counsel said the subsequent observations added by the judge after dismissing the case were unnecessary and that they may not remain part of the judgment. The judge readily accepted the request.

He, however, retained other observations wherein he had said that several women-centric enactments had been misused to teach a lesson to men in strained relationships.

“This is the right time to think of suitable amendments in those laws, in order to safeguard the interest of the innocent,” the judge had said and directed the High Court Registry to mark a copy of his judgment to the Union Ministry of Law and Justice.

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Printable version | Aug 4, 2020 7:50:48 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/madras-hc-deletes-remarks-on-christian-co-ed-institutions/article29181327.ece

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