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Indian Catholics demand strict action in Bible burning incident

A Muslim man in southern Kerala state has been arrested for the act said to be in retaliation to Quran burning in Europe
Members of the Students Christian Movement of India and other activists stage a protest in Bangalore on Jan. 19, 2016

Members of the Students Christian Movement of India and other activists stage a protest in Bangalore on Jan. 19, 2016. (Photo: AFP)

Published: February 01, 2023 12:54 PM GMT
Updated: February 02, 2023 04:06 AM GMT

Catholic bishops in southern India have deplored the burning of the Bible allegedly by a Muslim man who also uploaded video footage of it on social media.

Kerala state police arrested the accused after the communally sensitive video footage went viral.

“It is a deliberate attempt to create communal discord and he should be punished,” Father Jacob G. Palakkappilly, the spokesperson of the Kerala Catholic Bishops Council told UCA News on Feb.1.

Father Palakkappilly appreciated the quick action by the police but demanded that the man be tried for attempting to disrupt peace.

“This is a very heinous act,” the priest said while pointing out that the same man had removed the statues of infant Jesus and others from a crib in a government hospital last Christmas.

The man identified as Mohammed Mustafa, a resident of Kerala’s Kasargod district, is seen in video footage burning a Malayalam language copy of the Bible.

He is also heard saying that his act is in retaliation to the burning of a copy of the Quran in Sweden last month. A far-right Danish politician Rasmus Paludan reportedly committed the act outside the Turkish embassy in Stockholm.

Enraged Muslims in many parts of the world staged protests against the act but those in India desisted from reacting in a similar manner.

The accused Mustafa is said to be mentally unstable but many now believe he may be creating a false impression to escape the law.

Father Palakkappilly appealed to every law-abiding citizen to condemn such acts and ensure peace and harmony in society.

The Kerala bishops' Commission for Social Harmony and Vigilance too condemned the burning of the holy Bible and urged the government to take stringent action against the accused.

Father Michael Pulickal, CMI, who is secretary of the commission, in a statement on Jan. 31 called it a “very painful thing for Christians in India and across the world.”

The priest also questioned the silence of political, intellectual and other religious leaders over such actions and appealed to everyone to isolate such people who continue to threaten and disturb peace in society.

Father Pulickal appealed to the Kerala government to ensure stringent punishment for the culprit to send the message to people that “our society does not have any space for such communally divisive actions.”

Christians are the third largest religion in Kerala and account for 18.38 percent of its 33 million people. Hindus form 54.56 percent followed by Muslims who make up 26.56 percent of the southern state’s population.

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13 Comments on this Story
JOHN MASCARENHAS
it is a SHAME that this person thought that by burning the bible, he could compensate or retribution for the burning of the koran in sweden. these are 2 different incidences in 2 different countries with the same intent.... HATE! which religion teaches hate? be educated. uneducated people and fanatics have cattle mentality.
BLAISE
An eye for an eye is the punishment dictated by koran. What do you expect
MOHAMMAD SHAFI
Person arrested for the incident doesn't know that Jesus peace b upon him is also prophet of Muslims n Mary pbuh has been declared in Quran as the most exalted among the women of the world. Even their names come much more frequently in Quran than the name of Prophet Mohammad pbuh Wether anyone burns Quran or Bible or Tohra should hardly b a matter for us becoz they live in our hearts n souls. Whatever tormenting prophets suffer is to teach us lesson about how to b pateint.
UMMER FAROOK ABDULLA
And the Quran burning in Sweden?
FAROOQ
I apologise to all Christian, this is not the way of Islam, Qur'an forbids muslims to talk bad about other religion heads or priest's and their practices, as per Qur'an it is " to you your religion and to me mine".
MOHSIN HAIDER
Even Muslims consider Bible (Engeel) as a divine Holy Book. No true Muslim can do this shameless act. Law enforcement officials Should enquire in deep.
MD SAIF ALI
Chaahe koi bhi religion ho per jo Sweden Denmark mein Quran ko jalaya gaya usper koi action nahi aise logo ko saja milna chahiye jo tension tnaw paisa karta ho
LESLIE MENEZES
Kaunsa quran jalaya gaya? Uthman version woh to muhamad ka nahin hai ya muhamad version woh to kisi ke paas nahin hai? Asli quran to is samay kisi ke pass nahin hai. Jo quran hai woh bhi. Agar quran kisi ka fir ne print ki hai toh kya woh jalal hai?
HUMAN
To be Godly means to tolerate, which is respect of life. Religion isn't only about what would happen after death but what good can it contribute to our lives. May peace prevail.
LESLIE MENEZES
Muslims are supported by the Christians as minorities. Christians should stop supporting Muslims for anything.
FELIX PEREIRA
By burning any Holy Books of any religion one will not achieve anything. He may be a misguided youth. Forgive him and he will realise his mistake. However such type of act should not be tolerated by anyone and such people should be isolated
AYESHA
I apologize for the ignorant muslim's mistake, also we muslims condemn, Islam never teaches to malign other religion, we respect Jesus as a prophet similar to Mohammed, we make no distinction between Mohammed or Jesus,infact Adam, Abraham, Noah, Moses, David, Solomon, Jesus they all came with the message to worship one lord Allah, in Hebrew its elohim. Elohim is nothing but Allah. Eloh of hebrew means Ilahi in Arabic, The Im refers for honour. Royal honour.
HAJRA
˹O believers!˺ Do not insult what they invoke besides Allah or they will insult Allah spitefully out of ignorance. This is how We have made each people’s deeds appealing to them. Then to their Lord is their return, and He will inform them of what they used to do. Surah An'am:108 Islam is a religion of peace. And Jesus AS is one of the greats Prophet we believe in. An entire chapter of Quran is dedicated to the pious mother of Jesus "Surah Maryam". We condemn any such act!
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