Janet D’Souza, Vice-Chairperson, Maharashtra State Minorities Commission, on Sunday said that Christian cemeteries were being encroached upon at various places in the state. She was speaking at a function organised by the Catholic Association of Poona at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in the city. D’Souza is the first woman appointed to the post of vice-chairperson of the commission.
D’Souza, who recently visited Aurangabad, Parbhani and Jalna, said the major complaint she received from people was that of lack of decent burial places. “We conducted our own inspection and found that several cemeteries were being encroached upon,” she said, adding that the collectors of respective districts have been asked to chalk out a plan to address the issue.
D’Souza said there have been reports of attacks on churches and minority educational institution authorities being harassed.
“We need to address these issues and the commission has a great responsibility. However, the community also needs to be pro-active in addressing issues and getting involved in the political process,” she said.