Two Manipur churches served eviction notice

Published 03 April 2012
Two Baptist churches inside the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) in Imphal, Manipur have been served a notice ordering them to vacate within 15 days.

A leading medical institute, RIMS summoned the elders of Lamphel Baptist Church and Rongmei Naga Baptist Church on March 29 and served 15 days notice to remove the church structures.

The RIMS authorities even threatened of using force if the two churches were not dismantled within the given period.

Leaders of both the churches have approached the state government, urging for its intervention to stop the proposed demolition process.

A memorandum was also submitted to the Home Minister as well as the Health Minister on Friday.

The churches were established by the employees of the erstwhile Regional Medical College (RMC) in 1973 for the purpose of worship. Members belonged to communities such as Meitei, Kuki, Vaiphe, Rongmei, Thadou, among others.

The All India Christian Council (aicc) meanwhile condemned RIMS' threat to use force and took up the matter with Member of Parliament, Rishang Keishing.

Keishing has assured to address the concerns after speaking with Chief Minister of Manipur, O Ibobi Singh.

The aicc has also taken up the matter with National Commission of Minorities and Manipur State Minority Commission.

"Christians in Manipur are facing increasing threats from the public as well as the state government. It is the duty of the elected government to protect and serve the interest of minorities in the state," said aicc Secretary General, John Dayal.

According to the advocacy group, many churches in Meitei and Rongmei villages in Manipur have been destroyed and Christians attacked for the last 15 years. Two churches in Naga River, Imphal were also recently served a notice to vacate.

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