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Salesians meet External Affairs Minister for Uzhunnalil’s release 

Bangalore: A Salesian team led by the Bangalore provincial has recently met External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to plead for the release of Father Tom Uzhunnalil, who was abducted in Yemen more than a year ago.

Swaraj told the team that she felt with Uzhunnalil, who has faced “unimaginable trauma and suffering” for the past 18 months. The Indian government has listed the priest’s safety and release as one of its top priorities, she added.

All efforts are made with utmost urgency by the Indian government and help is sought from governments, organizations, and people who could assist in this process, the minister told the Salesian team on August 17 when it visited her in her office in New Delhi.

She reiterated that Uzhunnalil is alive and safe and that the Indian government believes he would be released soon.

The delegation submitted a letter of appeal that highlighted its concerns and hope for Uzhunnalil’s early release.

Besides Bangalore provincial Father Joyce Thonikuzhilyil, the team included vice provincial Father Jose Koyickal, Father George M.K. and Delhi provincial Jose Mathew. Father Anand David Xalxo from the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India accompanied them.

Uzhunnalil was abducted on March 4, 2016, from a home for the aged and destitute in Aden, a southern port city. Armed terrorists stormed the home managed by the Missionaries of Charity and shot dead four nuns and 12 employees.

They abducted Uzhunnalil, a member of the Bangalore province of the Salesians who attended to the spiritual needs of the nuns.

The meeting with Swaraj was arranged by Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas, secretary general of CBCI.

(Source: Bosco information service)

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2 Responses to Salesians meet External Affairs Minister for Uzhunnalil’s release

  1. Monica Rohom

    It is very heart breaking to think of the plight of Fr Tom. He has faced unimaginable trauma and suffering. Let’s hope and pray for his safe and early release.

  2. Thankapan vaidhyar

    Which youth will venture to join for priesthood to Salesian congregations in forthcoming years? Shame to see u photo facing with Swaraj, were you not contemplating for this photo session since Tom in the hands of the terrorists? Member of your congregation is in persecution, since 18 months. Where where you until now?
    We observe you people in Delhi offices for CBSE school recognition, a tertullian task, and you achieve it soon, we do not know how…. Any way, shame to the Salesians and the CRI, who could not do anything concretely, or could not made known publically (if you argue, you did?)It was a public issue. You should have had the lead from the day one or the first hour of the hazard. BJP govt is better than you and congress system, for the suffers in the church. The new generation will join in BJP than the congregation, the photograph inspires for it. Sorry to spell it in public. But… Who will tell otherwise?
    This is the answer for the fall of vocation to religious life….