By Robancy A Helen
National Dalit Christian Watch (NDCW), a civil society organization, conducted the Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and Karnataka state chapters in August-September.
NDCW campaigns and advocates for an inclusive and casteless church and society and works as a watchdog to protect the rights of Dalit Christians. It also takes up facts and findings on state, national, and international advocacy.
Through Dalit Christian Digest (DCD), the issues affecting Dalit Christians are highlighted, says Dr. Vincent Manoharan, the chairperson of NDCW.
The state intervention program of the Kerala region of the NDCW was held on August 9 at Marthoma Bible Institute, Kombady, Tiruvalla.
The program was aimed at discerning and discussing the caste-based inequalities inside the Christian churches in the region and seeking to reinforce their involvement on a larger level. Over 40 participants from the Protestant, Independent and Catholic churches participated.
The Telangana State Advocacy meeting was held on September 12 at Jyothirmai, Centre for Pastoral Commissions of the Telugu Catholic Bishops’ Council in Hyderabad.
The Andhra Pradesh State Advocacy meeting took place on September 13 at Ananda Jyothi Renewal Centre, Guntur. The Karnataka State Advocacy meeting was on September 18 at Vidyaniketan, Dharwad.
The objective of these meetings is to identify the pressing issues in the church and society of the State chapters and to plan their intervention soon.
The participants shared their concerns and promised that as a state chapter they would collaborate with the NDCW team and address the issues in the church and society.
NDCW also envisions creating second-generation leaders to actively involve themselves in rights-based activities and to become human rights defenders.
Dalit Christian Digest, a news portal, will capacitate the youth to become journalists and take leadership roles in the Church, said Father Devasagayaraj Zackarias, the managing editor of DCD.