Police try to seal Moovattupuzha Jacobite church

In July 2017, the Supreme Court ordered to hand over all the Malankara parishes to the Orthodox church

The State revenue authorities, backed by the Muvattupuzha police, entered the compound of the St. George’s Jacobite Syrian Church, Mudavoor, near Muvattupuzha, about 11 a. m. on Tuesday. However, the police and revenue authorities did not enter the church or seal, eye-witnesses said.

The Supreme Court ordered in July 2017 to hand over all the Malankara parishes to the Orthodox church, and the State authorities have been sealing the churches in an attempt to implement the court order. The court had ordered that there should be no parallel administration of the churches and they should be administered by the Orthodox group. The State government held three rounds of talks with the Jacobite and Orthodox factions of the church to reach an amicable solution.

The High Court of Kerala is considering a petition on the Kothamangalam Cheriya Palli (Marthoman Church), which is now under the Jacobite administration. According to the Supreme Court order, the church should be handed over to the Orthodox group.

A Jacobite church committee member claimed that there were around 360 families of the Jacobite group under the Mudavur church. The number of Orthodox faction families was much less, he said.

He said that initially the police and revenue authorities arrived at the church campus with the intention of sealing the church. However, they withdrew from the efforts later.

Hundreds of members of the Jacobite group had gathered before the church after hearing the news of police action, he added.

This article originally appeared on The Hindu