While paying tributes to Karunanidhi, Father Vincent Chinnadurai, former chairman of the state's Minorities Commission said: “The self-proclaimed atheist politician "always had a soft corner for religious minorities and especially for Christians whether in power or not.”
The statement of Father Chinnadurai indicates the veiled agenda of the Dravidian Movement and the swift expansion of the Church in the state for past six decades. Church leaders also praised Karunanidhi for his wholehearted support to the “freedom of religion” despite being an “atheist”.
M. Karunanidhi died on Aug 7 of an age-related illness in a hospital in state capital Chennai. He was 94. Thousands poured with grief while walking with the mortal remains of their beloved leader totally unaware of the pro-activeness about the minorities and visible hatred for the common Hindu community.
During his last term as chief minister from 2006-11, Karunanidhi gave special reservations for low-caste Christians in educational institutions and government jobs, Father Chinnadurai said.
The priest even noted: “Even though he was an atheist, he always supported the right of every citizen including Christians to propagate their faith. He was a strong opponent of the anti-conversion law enacted by the state government in 2002.”
The Church leaders have unreservedly mourned the death of Karunanidhi. The Church and Christian leaders are not so univocal. On such sentimental issues, their responses are customarily very much formal or official. But in the case of expressing about the death of Kalaignar, their mourning is visible when they say: “Karunanidhi's death is a big loss to religious minorities and other oppressed groups like Dalits.”
Similarly, let’s see the phrasings in the press statement of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of India. It read: “The politician was "a towering Dravidian icon" who with his great intellectual prowess and pragmatism shaped the political narrative in Tamil Nadu and worked hard to uplift the common man. The church "will remember with affection this tall personality," it said, adding that the bishops expressed their gratitude for all the support and encouragement he gave the Christian community and its activities.” What a confirmation of Comradeship and what an expression of solidarity!
Missing Karunanidhi’s cordiality, Jesuit Father Joe Anthony, former editor of Catholic fortnightly newspaper The New Leader, said the state's bishops always felt free to approach him whenever his party was in power and he always welcomed them and listened to them.
While venting the angst Bishop Ezra Sargunam went further to praise Karunanidhi for his atheism proclaiming that: “He always protected religious minorities from hard-line Hindu groups!” Yes, Dear Father, we can understand the real significance of your real reason for anguish. Surely there will be no more Karunanidhi to propel you or the conditions suitable to spread the ‘Good News’ anymore!
Research says- Christian community recorded the most remarkable growth of population during the 1951 to 2011 period.
In 2016, a study by AP Joshi, MD Srinivas and JK Bajaj of the Centre for Policy Studies, a Chennai think-tank was published with shocking revelations. The researchers found that found that the Christian community recorded the most remarkable growth of population during the 1951 to 2011 period. The three experts analysed the census results from 1951 to 2011 which threw out the interesting findings.
The CPS commented: Tamil Nadu is one of the rare States where Christians have grown faster than the Muslims in the period following Independence. Between 1951 and 2011, the number of Christians has risen from 14.3 to 44.2 lakh, while that of Muslims has grown from 14.4 to 42.3 lakh. In the same period, the share of Muslims in the population has grown from 4.79 to 5.86 per cent and of the Christians from 4.74 to 6.12 per cent.
The research and its conclusion is evident to see the share of Karunanidhi in the surprising spread of the Church and Christianity in Tamil Nadu.
This revelation concurrences with the Priests and Church leaders’ sentiments that the ‘Death of atheist Indian politician saddens church people”.
Karunanidhi was always an atheist. In 2007, while the whole nation stood against Congress and Sonia’s decision to dent the historical and sacred Ram Sethu, Karunanidhi was ahead to prove the historic value of Ram and Rama sethu. Quoting former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, he had said that Ramayana was a story based on the fight between Aryan and Dravidian races. "Lord Ram is an imaginary character and Ram Sethu is not a man-made bridge. The Centre should not do anything to disturb the Sethusamudram project," he had said.
Noted commentator Vinay Joshi who expressed his candid remarks on socio-political issues comments that the “sole objective of creating and spreading Dravidian Political Movement wad to drive away Hindus from Hindu traditions and religion and then Church can poach them at ease. The language and lavish praises which Church showered on Karunanidhi in the name of offering condolences only proves the point that Dravidian Movement was highly successful in throwing Tamil Nadu to Church's kitty.”
Expressing his view via FB post, Joshi tells that the Church has wreaked havoc of religious conversions of Hindus in Tamilnadu days. The church is a sprawling business enterprise in the Dravidian heartland.
Jaylalaita had promulgated anti-conversion law in Tamilnadu which was vehemently opposed by Karunanidhi. Later she herself wound up that law as she buckled under tremendous pressure from Church, adds Joshi.