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Updated: Jun 4, 2019

The head of the Catholic Church in India, Oswald Cardinal Gracias recommended that citizens vote for a secular party that protect the Indian Constitution, even as he received BJP MP Poonam Mahajan and Congress aspirant Milind Deora who came to seek his support ahead of Monday’s general election in Mumbai.

Cardinal Gracias had issued a pastoral letter March 14 saying that India needs leaders who “understand that authority is service, listen to the people, understand their anxieties and their needs and respond effectively.”

In an interview to TOI Thursday, Cardinal Gracias assessed the economic and social changes that have come into effect since the Narendra Modi government took oath in 2014. The Cardinal had proposed a vote for “good governance” at the time. “I do see a certain insecurity among minorities, although I do not think it is required. India is a free country. Yes, whichever party is elected must uphold the secular traditions of the Indian Constitution, which has the best framework to protect universal rights. Our government must work for the economy, ensure safety of women and children, minorities, tribals and Dalits. Social harmony is important to progress. A country’s greatness is measured by its care for weaker sections,” he said.

Read more: Times of India


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