So Who is referred to as Christian in India, it is a fundamental question that needs to be answered. But how did this question came into existence and why it is so important for us to consider this at this point. We try to analyse & point out issues that arise while answering this question.

Recently Mr Ravi Shankar Prasad while answering the question in the Rajya Sabha informed that according to the Constitution of India, Scheduled Caste Hindus are eligible for reservation benefits but they cannot avail the benefits if they convert to Christianity or Islam. He further states that Scheduled case people belonging to Hindu, Sikh & Buddhism faiths are eligible for contesting the elections on the seats reserved for SC & ST categories.

Image sourced from Internet

This created an uproar in social media & many people applauded the Law Minister for his courage & the opportunity that is provided to the SC & ST category people in participating in democratic process. We take this argument in a bigger context by not only restricting to elections,

In a historic Kailash Sonkar Vs Maya Devi judgement, the Honourable Supreme Court applied the doctrine of eclipse to the caste. Once the person converts from Hindu to Christianity or Islam the case of the person goes into an eclipse & in event of same person reconverting back to his Hindu faith, the caste of the person revives. To ensure that the people of SC & ST community continue to get the benefit of the reservations & also able to practice Christianity, the Missionaries came up with an idea of converting people stealthily & register them as non registered Christians. So Christians have 2 groups the official registered Christians & non registered Christians.

The second judgement of the Supreme court in a plea of Mohammed Sadique an elected Congress MLA from Bhadur Punjab Vs the SAD – BJP contestant Darbara Singh Garu. The court ruled that that “it is not essential for anyone to change one’s name after embracing a different faith”. This judgment further implies that the person visiting a place of any faith cannot be deemed to be a person practising the faith itself.

Keeping the above 2 judgements in perspective we can safely say that people visiting any place of worship of any faith does not deem them to be a person of particular faith & people may have a particular faith & caste on paper while they are believers of a different faith. This leads to rise & justification of what is called as a Crypto Christians.

Data sourced from Census 2011

In table 1: you can see the comparison between the 1971 & 2011 census, It shows the significant drop in the percentage of the Christian population in various districts of Andhra Pradesh. Even when we know that Andhra Pradesh is primary center of Missionary activity & supported by Political establishment.  So what explains the reduction in the Christian population in this district.

Table2: provides you the percentage change in Christian & SC population in the state of Andhra Pradesh. The migration from being a registered Christian to being a Crypto Christian is clearly visible.  Such is a situation in Tamil Nadu too.

Data sourced from census 2011

A registered Christian is a Christian & a Crypto Christian is a Christian. But this double standards of Missionaries have taken up the political space, they have the benefit of Foreign donors & the political class. Considering the above postulate, the statement made by our Honourable Law Minister have little credence & it will actually not serve any purpose of giving the reservations to the right set of people that includes reservations in Universities, Government Jobs & many more places including Supreme Court of India

In the whole analysis, the SC & ST Hindus in these states will always look at themselves as a much more marginalised class, as their Christian believers are not only enjoying all the facilities provided by the Government, but also the benefits that Missionaries provide like rice bags with foreign funds. It is leading to a stabilised society of people who are forcefully moved away from their Sanatan Dharma & making a social class that can swap identity at will.

Does Government need to have a fresh look at the problem & look at the repurcussions that may result if more & more people start becoming Crypto Christians.

Does Government need to have a fresh look at the problem & look at the repurcussions that may result if more & more people start becoming Crypto Christians.

These are just the few question that we wish to seek the answers for in a coming decade & new census.

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