Pastoral letter against Prof TJ Joseph read out in 120 churches



Kochi: A Pastoral letter condemning the 'irresponsible action' of Prof TJ Joseph, for preparing a question paper hurting the religious sentiments of a community, was today read out during the Sunday mass in 120 parish churches under the Kothamangalam Dioceses in Ernakulam district.

Coming out against the lecturer, whose is recovering after a brutal attack on him by radical outfit, Popular Front of India (PFI), which hacked his right arm, the Kothamanagalm dioceses bishop, George Punnakottil, said the attack does not nullify the 'crime' committed by Joseph. Such an 'irresponsible' act cannot be expected from the lecturer.

The college was accused of being an accomplice in hurting the religious feelings of the Muslim community. So the management had to take a decision to distance itself from the act of the lecturer, it said.

The pastoral letter also supported the management of the Newman College for sacking him.

Despite his repeated pleas for pardon, the management has been adamant with regard to its stand.

The Bishop said the aggrieved lecturer can approach the court to redress his grievance and the management would abide by the decision.

As controversy broke regarding the question paper, Joseph was suspended by the management.

The lecturer has decided to approach the university appellate tribunal for his re-instatement as his pleas to the college management to reconsider its decision, has fallen into deaf ears.

“We have no other choice,” Stella, his sister, who is a nun, said.

The family is 'upset' and 'scared' with the letter being read out in the churches.

Joseph today said he had not done anything wrong to apologize to the church and accepts favour from it.

"I have not done anything wrong. I am a religious person and respect all religion. Knowingly I have not hurt any religious community. Why is the Church asking to me apologize for a wrong doing I have not done?"

PTI