Nagaland Pradesh Congress Committee (NPCC) has denied and condemned the “baseless allegation” of deputy chief minister Y Patton that the Congress was an anti-Christian party, with reference to the party’s stand on the ongoing Israel-Palestine conflict.
In a rejoinder, NPCC also urged him to dispense his wisdom towards the good of the people of the state instead of indulging in infantile schemes that ended up doing disservice to the august chair that he occupied. Clarifying that the Congress had always espoused the spirit of equality and unity in diversity, and endeavoured to foster mutual respect among all faiths, the party’s state unit reiterated to continue condemning and opposing any agenda that bred religious bigotry and incited hatred along communal lines, “both within the confines of our borders and beyond”.
NPCC said it came as quite a shock when the deputy chief minister decided to baselessly label the Congress as an anti-Christian party. The party clarified that it had officially condemned the brutal attack on the people of Israel in the clearest of terms possible, but said it came as no surprise that the “jaundiced eyes” of a sangh parivar devotee picked up a tragic incident happening somewhere halfway across the globe and use it to conjure and stir up a communal cauldron back home.
Thirdly, considering the nature of the accusation coming from the ideologue of a party that prided itself on teaching a lesson to the minority communities of the country, NPCC said that one could not help but marvel at the irony of the situation.
Finally, the party maintained that condemning or supporting either Israel or Palestine was in no way a reflection of either being for or anti-Christian, pointing out that neither Israel nor Palestine was a Christian state.
If at all Patton aspired to lend his voice in favour of the Christians stuck in the conflict zone, the NPCC asked him to start from a place that acknowledged the fact that Christians at present constituted a mere 1.5% – 2% of the total population of both Israel and Palestine, and had historically been victims of both intended as well as unintended persecution on both sides of the border, comparatively more so from the actions of Israel.
It should also stem from the realisation that the Israel-Palestine conflict was a protracted and complicated matter, and the only path to solution was through peaceful dialogue and negotiations, it sated.