New Delhi: Taking note of the alleged
anti-Christian speeches made during the Narmada Samajik Kumbh
Mela in BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh last month, a minority panel
has decided to conduct an on-the-spot investigation into the
A full team of the National Commission for Minorities
(NCM) will visit the state soon to examine the complaints
received by various Christian bodies in this regard.
NCM Vice Chairman H T Sangliana said hate speeches
were allegedly made during the mela attacking Christian
The Commission discussed the issue threadbare in its
meeting held last week and decided that "given the gravity of
the complaints relating to anti-Christian news and
propaganda...the full commission will visit Madhya Pradesh."
Sangliana said though no untoward incident took place
during the three-day mela from February 10, the spirit of the
speeches made during the fair were not the ones that promoted
integrity and unity among various communities.
"We are absolutely firm against such hate speeches.
They should be banned. We have received complaints and we will
examine the issue after going there. Meanwhile, we recommend
that civil societies should strongly and loudly come out
against such communal propaganda," Sangliana said.
An estimated two million people are said to have
participated in the event.
Even before the event took off, several Christian
organisations expressed concerns that the festival could be
used to trigger anti-Christian violence in the state. After
the event came to an end, the NCM received many complains
alleging Christians and Christian bodies were put in poor
light during the Mela.
The event has faced opposition from the Christian
community and Congress party on the conversion issue.
Madhya Pradesh Congress president Suresh Pachouri had
also written a letter to Home Minister P Chidambaram and state
Governor Rameshwar Thakur to draw their attention to the event
and raised the issue of religious conversions and distribution
of pamphlets and literature depicting Christians in poor light
prior to the Kumbh.