A positive message

The Catholic leaders of Northeast India have sent out a positive message to the church’s believers by urging them to rise above religion, culture and caste to participate in the coming elections. The church leaders further made it clear that the community does not identify itself with any political party. This initiative is praiseworthy, considering the present situation in the country. Communal harmony in India has been badly hurt by the hateful anti-minority stand of certain right wing groups. They have been carrying out vicious campaigns against the minorities and making life miserable for them.
It is wrong to use religion as a theme during elections. In Arunachal too, a few politicians have been trying to use religion as an issue in the run-up to the assembly and Lok Sabha elections. Further, recently, on the social media, a letter allegedly written by a church leader appealing to the people to vote for an MP candidate was doing the rounds. This deeply angered a large section of the population. The people of Arunachal Pradesh, whatever may be their religious leanings, have always kept religion out of politics. That’s the reason why even the RSS has failed to make deep inroads into the state. The church leaders of Arunachal should learn from the Catholic leaders of other NE states. During elections the people should not look at the religious leanings of the leaders and should vote on development issues.