For the first time, a church led by its supreme head took to the streets to show solidarity with the trade unions who had called for a motor strike on January 24 to protest against the spiraling petrol and diesel prices.
It was the Church of South India (CSI) who came out to protest lead by their Moderator Bishop Thomas K Oommen. The Bishop along with his wife Soosan Thomas and other officer bearers of the Diocese walked down from the Bishop’s House in Chalukunnu to Baker Maidan where the Sesquicentennial Jubilee memorial convention of the church was being held.
“Our protest is not looking at the color of the flag or for those travelling in Benz cars but for those common people including the members of the CSI church who are struggling due to the hike in the fuel price,” he said.
He said that the action of the state and Central Governments cannot be approved since there are several options before them to reduce the price. We are protesting since fuel price hike and hike in travel ticket fares will affect only the common man, he said. The Bishop also said that he is registering the protest of over 45 lakhs members of the CSI church.
The previous day, the Bishop had given strict direction to the believers not to arrive at the convention venue in vehicles to express solidarity with those who have called for the strike. The main entrance of the venue was closed because of this.
Believers as well as many priests came in cycles at the venue. The Bishop had also urged the believers to give peaceful support to the bandh. The Bishop also decided against postponing the programmes on the fourth day of the convention due to the motor strike as a symbol of solidarity with the common man.
source: Times of India