How do you react to the prime minister's suggestion for a national debate on conversions?
How can a prime minister make such a statement without any basis? Look at the facts. The Christian population, according to the census, is going down. In Kerala, it has fallen. In the northeast, it is static. If there is a sudden increase, I can understand. On the other hand, it has fallen. The prime minister is just being pressurised by the Sangh parivar. I know Vajpayee as a reasonable man. The church has welcomed the debate; let the country know the facts. In a nation of one billion, we are just 2 per cent.
The church has a very proud record of dedicated service to the nation in education, medical care and service to the poor. Why has it become a target of attack and atrocity? What disturbs me is that the secular image of the country is being tarnished. India will get further isolated internationallyit already is after the nuclear testsand we cannot afford this.
Why this campaign against conversions?
They (the Sangh parivar) are panicky. They are acting...