The Conversion Agenda

"Freedom to convert" is counterproductive as a generalized doctrine. It fails to come to terms with the complex interrelationships between self and society that make the concept of individual choice meaningful. Hence, religious conversion undermines, and in extremes would dissolve, that individual autonomy and human freedom.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhar Reddy okays public money for Churches

August 23, 2006
Deccan Chronicle

Nizamabad, Aug. 22: Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy has decided to sanction grant-in-aid to old churches for repairs. Similarly, grant-in-aid would be sanctioned to new churches. He is the first chief minister to take the decision to give a facelift to abandoned churches. State Government has issued a specific GO Ms No. 21, stating that Rs. 80,000 will be sanctioned to each church for repair and renovation purposes, and Rs.1.50 lakh for constructing a church in the shape of grant-in-aid.

Repairs and renovation of abandoned churches and constructing new churches would be taken massively in the State. The responsibility to promulgate these orders was allocated to the Minorities Welfare Department.Mr M.S. Parvez, district minorities welfare officer, told this correspondent that the GO was communicated to all 36 mandal parishad development officers of the entire district. According to the GO, the concerned MPDOs could invite proposals for churches from church authorities for repair and renovation, and also invite proposals from church preachers to construct new churches, in their jurisdictions.

He also said that the proposals, which the MPDO receives, should include a blueprint copy of the plan, detailed estimate in original, duly approved by the mandal engineer, a letter of permission and recommendation by the panchayat authorities for the construction of a new church, representation on the letterhead of the Church Committee, documentary evidence of the property of the church in case of new construction. Rev. T. Bhasker, District Churches Council, Nizamabad said that 300 churches were spread over in the district with a 100 year history. Of them, 200 are in poor condition and some churches had already collapsed.

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