KOLKATA/RANCHI: West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday alleged that BJP was making “malicious attempts to malign” Missionaries of Charity (MoC) even as the Roman Catholic Church came out in support of the organisation founded by Mother Teresa. MoC is in the centre of a controversy after an employee and a nun at its Nirmal Hriday home in Ranchi were arrested last week on charges of selling off babies of unwed mothers.
Mamata took to Twitter, saying, “Mother Teresa herself set up Missionaries of Charity. And now they are also not being spared. Malicious attempts to malign their name. The Sisters are being targeted. BJP wants to spare no one. Highly condemnable. Let MoC continue to do their work for the poorest of the poor.”
Mother Teresa herself set up Missionaries of Charity. And now they are also not being spared. Malicious attempts to… https://t.co/wisHTn69JH— Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) 1531382458000
In her attack, Mamata found an unlikely ally in CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury, who singled out RSS for being behind the controversy. “The allegations (against MoC) seem unbelievable. Despite our ideological differences, we have had nothing but respect for Mother Teresa and the organisation...”
Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas, secretary general of Catholic Bishops Conference of India, the highest body of the Roman Catholic Church in the country, rubbished all the allegations. He said Sister Koncilia, who was arrested from Ranchi last week, has told her lawyers that she was forced by cops to sign a confessional statement.
“The sister was arrested on July 4, but a copy of the FIR was not handed over to our advocates. We had to move the court for it… our advocates were also denied permission to meet the nun for a week,” Mascaren said. Mascarenhas said the church would welcome a probe. “We are also not against a CBI probe. However, what is happening under the garb of a police probe is a deliberate attempt to malign MoC.”