Aizawl, Oct 14: A church which is under construction in Bawngkawn locality of Aizawl city was found vandalised by locals on Wednesday evening, triggering outrage among the members of local Christian community.
A group of local of Bawngkawn being instigated by the Local council hurled stones and damaged the wall of a church belonging to Baptist Church of Mizoram (BCM) that stand near Brigade Field in Bawngkawn over long standing land dispute. No person has been arrested in connection with the rampage, police said.
The incident occurred around 7 pm on Wednesday evening.
Lenghaia, the church elder who belonged to the damaged church of BCM said that the local council of Bawngkawn on Wednesday evening around 6 pm made public announcement asking the locals to assemble. Subsequently, the locals being instigated by the local council rushed to the site, hurled stone at the Assam typed church building and damaged almost all the walls and windows. The incident occurred around 7 pm, he said.
FIR was lodged at Bawngkawn police station in the same evening against the perpetrators. The BCM in its FIR alleged that Lenghaia, the chairman of the local church had earlier in the evening served a verbal notice and warned Bawngkawn police against the possibility of vandalism. However, no action has been taken by the police prior to the incident, the BCM alleged.
Denouncing the allegation, Bawngkawn police told the Mizoram Post that on being informed about the incident, some personnel rushed to the scene and dispersed the irate locals. Lenghaia said that the church building stands at the appropriate land which the BCM purchased from one individual known as R Kapthanga. “We are allowed to occupy the church as per court order,” he added.
While speaking to our reporter, a leader of BCM whose name has been withheld said that such act of savagery was too indecent and abhorrent to be happened in a Christian dominated state like Mizoram. “We have filed FIR and we hope the law enforcing agency will do their duty. But it seems they are not taking sincere effort in pursuing the case”, he added. The vandalism raised serious issue in the state as PC Zoramsangliana, a legislator from Kolasib assembly constituency vehemently criticized the act in the assembly today and wanted that such vandalism on church do not happened in future.
Meanwhile, the government has ordered the BCM and the Local Council not to lay hand upon the church building.
The police have sealed the place and deploy duty at the site.
Sources said that the land where the BCM constructed church has a long standing dispute. Despite being reserved for Government site, the land belongs to an individual and it is a proposed land where Bawngkawn Local Council is intending to construct Auditorium.
The government had earlier served a show cause notice to the BCM and stayed the construction. At this BCM then moved to a bench of senior civil judge in Aizawl as a result of which the stay order has been put on stay again.
Having learned that the revenue department’s stay order has been put on stay by a court, the member of the local church on last Monday evening gathered in the church and held thanks giving programme which ostensibly infuriated the local council.