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Visa to South African pastor politicized


The denial of Visa to the South African Baptist Pastor was unnecessarily politicised by BJP opponents, mainly by the Congress party in Meghalaya, in order to draw political mileage from the present politically fluid situation by putting the blame squarely on the BJP led NDA government at the centre. I consider this absurd and with no logical base. One does not know the real reason/s as to (i) why he was initially denied a visa and (2) why was he the only one who was denied visa to come to India out of the thousands who had applied for it? After all, those in the opposition tend to find fault with everything to gain political mileage especially during an election. Sane people should shun this quick-fix cheap politics. I firmly believe that people, of Garo Hills and elsewhere are not as gullible as some tend to believe and I am sure they can see through all this nonsense. 

In fact the sesquicentennial celebrations of the Baptist Church at Rajasimla was a grand success without the Pastor from South Africa and the Baptist Christian faith in Garo Hills has not lessened, in fact it grew more fervent and stronger in faith with the celebrations of the Sesquicentennial there. Of course the celebrations would have been more colourful and would have added dimension with the presence and living message from the Pastor but to me the Rajasimla celebrations did not lack anything. It has in fact instilled more hope, peace and unity among the Baptists of the Garo Hills.

Yours etc.,

Philip Marwein,

Via email  

Stop politicising Christ!  


Those who live by  extortion, blackmail , kidnapping, rape, killings, molestation , flesh trafficking.  Illegal drug trade are themselves  anti-Christian. It is no use dubbing BJP with that tag when we look at ourselves in the mirror of Christianity ! James Chapter 4:17 says, “Therefore,  to him who knows to do good  and does not do  it  to  him  it is sin. “  I am not pro-BJP  but I support a balanced view. Suppose you apply for a loan  from a bank and your application is rejected  due to an error in filling up of the loan  application form, shall you call the bank  anti-Christian  and now during election time in course of filling  nomination  papers if  there is an error while filling up of the nomination papers, shall we call  Mr Ram Singh the DC or (Returning Officer) West Garo Hills as anti-Christian or anti Garo  for rejecting the nomination papers?  No we cannot!

Similarly  for  the  Indian Consulate’s  action  on rejection of the preacher’s  visa  in South Africa  shall we  blame the Government in Delhi? It is important to view the issue in the proper perspective and not politicize it.  Reportedly Mr K J Alphons, Union Tourism Minister had clarified  that none of the senior Baptist leaders  ever  broached him on the subject of visa rejection  (ref. ST report  2nd para of page 5  of Friday  Feb 9th ) Slander just  for the sake of gaining political mileage  is a low blow and  shall never stand scrutiny  in  the eyes  of   God  Almighty come Judgment Day! We always pray; Let Your Will be done on earth  and May Your Kingdom  come  etc.  Did  Jesus  ever want  a  kingdom packed with  extortion, blackmail kidnapping  rape, killings, molestation, flesh trafficking. drug conduits  and  a  few compromising churches?   Is this what Christianity   in most of us is all about?  I’d  rather like  to be  called an atheist than be such a hypocrite!  Neither marathon temple hopping spree of 32 temples in Gujarat polls could help Rahul Gandhi the Congress president earn the Gujarat throne nor did  Christmas  Carol bashing  in Rajasthan help the saffron party in Rajasthan  and the MP by-polls. So what  gives? The normative way of God!  It shows that God has a panacea for all kinds of ailments including  that of  malaise in governance or misadventure! Let us  try to  be the kind of  Christians that Jesus would want us  to be here and not always live by the rhetoric anti-Christian while living and doing exactly the opposite of what a Christian’s life  is supposed to be. Jesus never said in the Bible that  HE came to save the Christians only nor did  HE  ever try to please people  but preached and practiced the Truth and in fact  almost all people hated  HIM  for exposing  them for what they are ! If one is a true follower of Christ  Jesus  then   he will never be a man-pleaser.!  (Galatians Chapter 1 vs 10) Truly sorry for the hard plain talk

Yours etc.,

Sonaram M Sangma, 



Invalid ST certificates?


I wish to inform you of an incident that occurred on February 5, 2018, when I went to file my nomination papers for the 18-West Shillong constituency. While inspecting my papers, the Returning Officer informed me that the Scheduled Tribe Certificate issued by the competent authority of the former composite United Khasi and Jaintia Hills District had become invalid and I was advised to obtain a fresh certificate which I, fortunately, could obtain since I filed my papers well before the deadline of February 7, 2018 for had I decided to file my papers on the last day itself, I am sure that I would not have been able to complete the process.

In this connection, what is perplexing is that the relevant notification which rendered the Scheduled Tribe certificate, issued by the United Khasi and Jaintia Hills District, invalid, has not been given wide publicity so as to enable the affected parties to do the needful as the implications in this regard are wide ranging.

For instance, if the above mentioned ST certificates have indeed become invalid, it logically follows that the possessors  of such ST certificates (which I am sure number in the thousands) have ceased to be Scheduled Tribes and are, therefore, liable to be served with Income Tax Payment Notices.

Hence for the convenience of the affected parties, I request the concerned District authorities to kindly clarify on the above matter.


Yours etc., ,

Donald Shanpru

Shillong- 2


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