Two Meghalaya Churches Refuse to Financially Benefit from Center

Published 29 January 2018  |  
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Two mega churches in Meghalaya have not registered for an aid package of Rs 70-crore announced by the central government for development of places of worship in the state.

The Catholic Church and the Mawkhar Presbyterian Church have decided not to take any financial aid from the center and hence, rejected the package announced by Union Tourism Minister K. J. Alphons on Jan. 8, under the 'Swadesh Darshan' scheme of the Ministry.

"We have not applied for any financial assistance from the government for face-lifting of the Cathedral. The ongoing face-lifting is being carried out solely through the generous contributions of the faithful," read a statement issued by the Parish Pastoral Council of the Cathedral of Mary Help of Christians on Jan. 19.

Fearing the direct involvement of the churches in electoral politics, Barnabas Nongbah, the council's secretary, said the announcement for financial help ahead of elections in the state is not commended.

"There was no communication made between the ministry and the church before and after the announcement by Tourism Minister KJ Alphons, and that the consultants had not officially visited the premises till date," said Nongbah.

The state election in Meghalaya is set to kick off late February.

The announced scheme will provide aid for a total of 48 places of worship.

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