BJP hits out at Goa Church

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Panaji, Aug 30: Slamming an article published in a Goa Church magazine on the Panaji by-poll eve, comparing contemporary Goa and India to Nazi Germany, the BJP on Wednesday hit back, terming the criticism unfair and that Nazism was popular in Germany since the population then was almost 100 per cent Catholic.

Addressing a press conference here to specifically respond to the criticism by Goa’s influential Roman Catholic Church, BJP MLA and official party spokesperson Nilesh Cabral also said, that the Church needed to tone down the language used in its official magazine “Renovacao”, in which an article also made unflattering remarks about ruling political leaders likening them to dogs.

“Similar Nazism was at that time popular in Germany, where 100 per cent almost Catholics (were) supported by the Church. So what are they trying to say. What are they giving in this magazine?”

However, his claims about Germans’ religious orientation in the Nazi era seemed to be factually inaccurate. According to the official census in Germany in 1933, over 62 per cent of the population in the year that Hitler took over as the Chancellor, was Protestant, while 32.5 per cent were Catholic, while 0.7 per cent followed the Jewish faith.

The article published in “Renovacao” — a pastoral bulletin of the Archdiocese of Goa and Daman — on poll eve had urged Goa voters to vote against communal forces in order to halt the march of “nationwide fascism”. “Anybody who read William Shirer’s ‘The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich’ or Alan Bullock’s ‘A study of tyranny’ or Hitler’s own ‘Mein Kampf’ will find an extraordinary identity between the growth and rampage, of Nazism in Germany in 1933 onwards and India in 2014,” it said.

Cabral however said, that Goa Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao, whom he described as a “good man”, should ensure that the magazine which operates from the Bishop’s House here, should not contain polarising content. He said that he would write to the Archbishop to complain about the contents of the magazine and urge him to ensure that the articles are properly vetted. (IANS)

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