Madurai, Dec. 26, 2018: Some members of the Madurai-Ramnad Church of South India diocese have asked bishops to discharge only religious duties and not involve in asset management.
“Bishops, who receive salaries, must only discharge religious duties,” C. Joel Sam Asir, a member of the diocese told a press conference on December 24 in Madurai.
The CSI Trust Association (CSITA), a company registered under the Indian Companies Act, has the responsibility to manage all assets and institutions of the Church.
“The widespread irregularities in the functioning of the CSITA included tacit granting of enormous powers to bishops to manage church properties and administer educational institutions,” Asir alleged.
According to him, the memorandum of association of the CSITA specifies that bishops must only discharge religious duties for which they receive salaries.
“Ideally, the bishops cannot even interfere in the management of educational institutions, particularly appointment of staff,” he claimed.
Paapu Manickam, another member, alleged that Madurai-Ramnad Diocese has a unique body called Madurai-Ramnad Diocese Management Association, which had been managing the properties when it had no such powers.
When contacted, the Madurai-Ramnad Diocese Bishop’s office said it was yet to receive a copy of the recent order of the Madras High Court and it would soon meet the media to reply to all allegations.