Protest calling for bishop’s resignation turns violent

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Police in the southern Indian city of Thiruvananthapuram clashed on Sunday with members of the Church of South India during a protest march calling for the resignation of Dharmaraj Rasalam – the Bishop in South Kerala and primate of the CSI.

Anti-corruption activists called for a protest march after Bishop Rasalam was interrogated by police in connection with corruption and money laundering charges. 

News reports from Kerala state the police refused the protestors permission to march on the bishop’s home. By the time the rally reached Marty’s square, a police line had formed. After ignoring an order to disperse, police charged the demonstrators wielding batons.  Approximately 65 people were taken into custody and  minor injuries were reported.

On 25 July 2022 police raided the offices of the Diocese in South Kerala, the homes of the bishop and key diocesan staffers, and the Dr Somervell Medical College in Karakoram seeking evidence of corruption and fraud. The following day immigration authorities blocked the bishop from leaving India for the 2022 Lambeth Conference and on Wednesday the 27 the bishop was questioned for over ten hours by federal investigators.