Abstract of applications received on tour
The 15th October 1954.
15th October 1954.
Chairman explained the object of the State Government in setting up the committee.
Shri S. G. Dabir, President, Bar Association: American Mission does not aim at service to humanity. The hospital here is used as an institution for preaching Christian religion. Some time back I had sent a girl to the hospital for treatment. Two missionary ladies tried to impress on her that Hindu religion is bad and she should embrace Christianity. They attack such articles of our religious belief as Mangalsutra and bangles by asking them to be removed at the time of giving chloroform without any reason. This leads us to the belief that it is deliberately done against Hindu religion to hurt our feelings. This is also my own experience in regard to my daughter-in-law and one other girl who was sent with her. There is no admission to males in the hospital because it is a female hospital. Men are not informed what their women are suffering from. We are simply required to pay. Therefore they have got a free state in the hospital. From the political point of view, I may say that Pakistan was conquered by force of religion. Missionaries are on very good terms with America. It is, therefore, feared that politically this may lead to antinationalism. Prayers are compulsory every morning. Advantage is taken of psychological movements for impressing Christ’s Dressings to the patients. There are two preachers, a man and a woman, who preach to the patients in the hospital. The male preacher comes from the hospital itself. Why he is allowed to enter the hospital when no other males are allowed. Diagonosis is not made known to patients. When prayers are offered, patients are informed that they are for their cure. Once there was a quarrel between a man and a woman. The woman was given shelter in the hospital and later she became a Christian.
Shri Bhatkhade, Pleader: There was a nurse. She was Christian and her surname was Sathe. Twins were born to a woman in the hospital. One of the twins was requested to be given to the hospital. This is an indirect attempt to convert.
Shri Yeshya son of Ganya Mahar of Ukali: This is a case of last year. I am a poor person. My son got burns. I was given to understand by Missionaries that he would be given free medicine. He was kept in the hospital for two months. Having admitted as free, I was given a bill for Rs. 60, when I refused to be converted I paid off the bill and took away my son.
Shri Narayan Nagane, Pleader: In weekly markets, Christian preachers use abusive language against Hindu Gods in their propaganda. Krishna was said to be a debauch. Maruti was said to have a tail. Kunti gave birth to five sons. And it was explained that human beings cannot have tails or give birth to five sons. Hindu Gods are, thus, said to be imaginary. On this, there was great commotion and agitation. There was danger to peace and order. But the mass was pacified. Government must first check the finances of missionaries. If the Mission Hospital here is closed, we would have no objection. The hospital is about 15 to 20 years’ old.
Dr. Spiker: We do not baptise, we merely preach. We do not expect patients to come for prayers. There are no prayers in wards. Regarding the allegation of Yesha, you can see our account books. We have come to India out of sheer love, for the people and the country. We spread the love of Christ wherever we go. We do not force anybody. We have come with love for people. That is Christ’s message. In our opinion, there will never be a Krististan in India.
Rev. Gaikwad: Our work is on the lines of the message of Christ. Christ says, “Preach, Teach and Heal”. The missionary preacher alleged to be living in the women’s hospital, lives in the compound and he preaches behind the hospital, outside the building. I am from Washim only. I was educated up to Matric here and then I went to Mysore for theological training. I get Rs. 70 per mensem as pay. The amount is received from India District Assembly, which is an organised society. Shri S. P. Dongardeve is the treasurer of this fund. There are 1,400 Christians in this area. Missionary work started here since 1912. There are ten reverends, 22 missionaries and about 45 other preachers. If we are not allowed to preach, there is no point in our running the hospital. The Christian population here has not increased by even 150 within the last ten years because the position of Christian Mandli was unsound. Now, it is functioning all right. There was practically no work during the last ten years. But since the last month, there is spread of love and consequent good work. There is a vast change now. We want that Christians should be good nationals. We do not say anything about America. I am not a national of America. I shall spread the Message of Christ so long as I am alive.
Shri Bandhe, Pleader: I had a Tahsildar friend Dhamdhere. He was a convert. Once he told me that there still prevails a feeling of casteism among the converts. And a Brahmin convert will give his daughter in marriage to a Brahmin convert only and not to a Mahar convert.
Dr. Spiker: If Indian Christian preachers speak anything, which would offend your religion, please inform us. If there is any trouble on religions grounds in the hospital, please inform me. I will set the matters right.
Shri Bandhe, Pleader: Christian literature was distributed here in the Balaji fair last year. Similarly, they play havoc in Loni Fair. Yesterday, there was a fair here, but they did not distribute any literature this year because of the Commission’s visit to this place.
Rev. Gaikwad: A community convention is going on in Yeotmal. Therefore, all of us were there. Otherwise we would have distributed literature this year also. We speak against idol worship because it has been mentioned in our religion.
Dr. Spiker: Our Central Body in America is known as Church of Nazerene. Within the last ten years we did not have more than 50 converts. I am not sad over it, because one convert means one world.
Chairman concluded with thanks.
The 15th October 1954.
Chairman explained the object of the State Government in setting up the Committee and introduced the members.
Shri R. B. Athale: As far as I know, missionaries are doing useful work. They are not taking part in anti-national activities. I have received no complaints against them. No complaints about conversion by force. . There may be inducement, but it is not on a scale worth the name.
Shri Khandare of Scheduled Castes Federation-Mahars: Those who have been converted to Christianity, are holding good posts in life, Mahars have been the victims of all-Musalmans in Musalman Raj, Christians in English Raj and Harijans in Congress Raj. There is no Government help to Mahars even after independence. Conversions are mostly from our community.
Christianity Missionary: There is no problem as such in Akola. There are prayers in the morning and evening in our hostel. Anybody is admitted to it on payment of the prescribed fees. We go out preaching for some days is a week or a month but that has nothing to do with our hostel. There is no appreciable increase or decrease in recent years in the Christian community here.
Funds are received from America. They come for Mission work. Our churches are becoming self-supporting now. We do not gain anything by converting people by showing them allurement. We do give some scholarships and help to needy persons.