Trying to settle church row, govt tells court

Seeks more time for peacefully resolving the issue

The State government is making all efforts to settle the dispute peacefully between the two factions of the Malankara Syrian Church, according to an affidavit filed by the government in the Kerala High Court.

The affidavit was filed in response to a petition filed by the vicar of the St. Mary’s Orthodox Syrian Church, Piravam, seeking police protection for offering religious services at the church. The government pointed out that Moran Mor Ignatious Phrem II, Patriarch of Antioch and all the East, met Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan recently and assured his interference in the matter. The religious head was optimistic about resolving the disputes peacefully.

The affidavit added that it was one of the prime duties of the State government to maintain law and order and protect the life and property of citizens. The Patriarch, who was the spiritual head of the Church, had already interfered to bring about an amicable settlement between the two factions.